1st Edition

Legal Thought and Eastern Orthodox Christianity The Addresses of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I

Edited By Norman Doe, Aetios Nikiforos Copyright 2024

    Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, the spiritual leader of Eastern Orthodox Christians worldwide, has thought profoundly about the role of law as it applies to the church, to civic life in Europe, to human rights, to religious freedom, and to the environment. In this book, leading scholars across the world reflect critically on the significance of his legal thought for human flourishing, for Christian social teaching, and for Christian unity. His legal thought is summed up in five key public addresses that he has delivered around the world in recent years, on: church law as an ecumenical instrument; the role of religion in a changing Europe; Orthodoxy and human rights; religion and freedom; and climate change, ecumenical imperatives. The collection presents critical reflections on the legal thought in these five important, distinct, and topical fields of human life. Its ten chapters, with two chapters devoted to each of his five addresses, are written by leading scholars across the world from different Christian traditions with expertise in the fields studied. They provide an analysis of the legal thought of the Patriarch, explain its significance legally, theologically, and politically, and propose its unifying value for the whole of global Christianity today. The book will be essential reading for academics and researchers working in the areas of law and religion, legal philosophy, comparative canon law, theology, and ecumenical studies.

    Preface – Norman Doe and Aetios Nikiforos

    List of Contributors

    Introduction – Norman Doe and Aetios Nikiforos

    Address I: Canon Law and Christian Law

    Chapter 1: The Canonist Patriarch: His All-Holiness Bartholomew and the Development of Canon Law – Aetios Nikiforos

    Chapter 2: The Principles of Christian Law – Norman Doe

    Address II: Religion in a Changing Europe

    Chapter 3: The European Union and Religion – Frank Cranmer

    Chapter 4: The States of Europe and Religion – Miguel Blanco

    Address III: Human Rights

    Chapter 5: Human Rights and Orthodox Christianity: Learning from Our Differences – John Witte

    Chapter 6: Better Human Rights: The Orthodox Lesson – Andrea Pin

    Address IV: Religious Freedom

    Chapter 7: An Eastern Orthodox Approach to Religious Freedom – Isidoros Katsos

    Chapter 8: Ecumenical Approaches to Religious Freedom – Mark Hill

    Address V: The Environment

    Chapter 9: From Crisis to Kairos: The ‘Green Patriarch’ and Environmental Law – M. Christian Green

    Chapter 10: Climate Change, Christian Ethics, and Christian Theology: Ecumenical Imperatives – Frederick Simmons

    Conclusion: Reflections – Christopher Hill



    Norman Doe is Professor and Director, Centre for Law and Religion, Cardiff Law School, Academic Bencher, Inner Temple, and Chancellor, Diocese of Bangor, Church in Wales.

    Aetios Nikiforos, The Very Rev Grand Ecclesiarch, is Director of the Private Office of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, Secretary of the Synodal Commissions on Canon Law Issues and on Inter-Orthodox Affairs, and Doctoral Candidate in Canon Law at Cardiff University.