USCCB, Particular legislation on canon 1292 §1, 15 April 2004.
In November 2002, the USCCB voted to revise the maximum and minimum amounts for alienation. This revision received the required recognitio from the Congregation for Bishops. What follows is a letter from Bishop Wilton Gregory, President of the USCCB, and the decree of promulgation.
May 6, 2004
Your Eminence/Your Excellency,
I write to you following my visit to the Roman dicasteries last month. During my conversation at the Congregation for the Clergy, the subject of the revised maximum and minimum sums for alienation, in accordance with canon 1292, §1 was raised. In that regard, I was asked to convey to you the following request.
As you will recall, the sums for alienation are now "two tiered." That is, there are different sums for dioceses with a Catholic population of 500,000 or more and all other dioceses. I have been requested to ask that when you write to the Holy See to seek the necessary authorization for such alienation, please indicate the number of Catholic faithful in your diocese. Please also indicate the source of the figure, which, it is suggested might normally be from the Kenedy Directory. Should the number which you cite differ from that reported figure, it would be very helpful if you could add a word of explanation, especially if the difference would result in your request being shifted from one of the two above-mentioned categories to another.
For your convenience, I am attaching a copy of my recent decree promulgating complementary legislation for alienation. I would be very grateful if you would consider sharing this information with your canonical advisors as well.
With prayerful best wishes in this Season of Easter, I am
Fraternally yours in the Lord,
Most Reverend Wilton D. Gregory
Bishop of Belleville
DECREE OF PROMULGATION
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
United States of America
Without prejudice to the prescript of canon 638, §3, when the value of the goods whose alienation is proposed falls within the minimum and maximum amounts to be defined by the conference of bishops for its own region, the competent authority is determined by the statues of juridic persons if they are not subject to the diocesan bishop; otherwise, the competent authority is the diocesan bishop with the consent of the finance council, the college of consultors, and those concerned. The diocesan bishop himself also needs their consent to alienate the goods of the diocese.
On November 13, 2002, the Latin Church members of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops approved complementary legislation for the implementation of canon 1292, §1 of the Code of Canon Law for the Latin Church dioceses of the United States. The action was granted recognitio by the Congregation for Bishops in accord with article 82 of the apostolic constitution Pastor Bonus and issued by Decree N. 296/84 of the Congregation for Bishops signed by His Eminence Giovanni Battista Cardinal Re, Prefect, and His Excellency Most Reverend Franciscus Monterisi, Secretary, and dated June 3, 2002. On March 31, 2004, a subsequent decree with the same protocol number was issued which granted recognitio to the following for a period of two years:
1. the maximum limit for alienation and any transaction which, according to the norm of law, can worsen the patrimonial condition is $10,000,000 for dioceses with Catholic populations of half a million persons or more. For other dioceses the maximum limit is $5,000,000 (cf. can. 1295);
2. the minimum limit for alienation and any transaction which, according to the norm of law, can worsen the patrimonial condition is $1,000,000 for dioceses with Catholic populations of half a million persons or more. For other dioceses the minimum limit is $500,000;
3. for the alienation of property of other public juridic persons subject to the diocesan bishop, the maximum limit is $5,000,000 and the minimum limit is $25,000 or 5% of the prior year's ordinary annual income, whichever is higher;
4. both the maximum and minimum amounts within the region are linked to the consumer price index as determined annually by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, and reported by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to the appropriate offices of the Holy See and to the Conference members.
As President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, I hereby decree that the effective date of this decree for all the Latin Church dioceses in the United States will be April 15, 2004.
Given at the offices of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in Washington, DC, on April 15, 2004.
Most Rev. Wilton D. Gregory
Bishop of Belleville
Rev. Msgr. William P. Fay
General Secretary, USCCB
USCCB, Particular legislation on canon 1292 §1, 15 April 2004, CLSA, Roman Replies and Advisory Opinions, 2004, 25-27.