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Code of Canon Law

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  • BOOK II : THE PEOPLE OF GOD
    • PART III : INSTITUTES OF CONSECRATED LIFE AND SOCIETIES OF APOSTOLIC LIFE
      • SECTION I: INSTITUTES OF CONSECRATED LIFE
        • TITLE II: RELIGIOUS INSTITUTES (Cann. 607 - 709)
          • CHAPTER III : THE ADMISSION OF CANDIDATES AND THE FORMATION OF MEMBERS
            • ARTICLE 1: ADMISSION TO THE NOVITIATE
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CHAPTER III : THE ADMISSION OF CANDIDATES AND THE FORMATION OF MEMBERS

ARTICLE 1: ADMISSION TO THE NOVITIATE

Can. 641 The right to admit candidates to the novitiate belongs to the major Superiors, in accordance with the norms of the institute's own law.

Can. 642 Superiors are to exercise a vigilant care to admit only those who, besides being of required age, are healthy, have a suitable disposition, and have sufficient maturity to undertake the life which is proper to the institute. If necessary, the health, disposition and maturity are to be established by experts, without prejudice to can. 220.

Can. 643 §1 The following are invalidly admitted to the novitiate:

One who has not yet completed the seventeenth year of age;

a spouse, while the marriage lasts;

one who is currently bound by a sacred bond to some institute of consecrated life, or is incorporated in some society of apostolic life, without prejudice to can. 684;

one who enters the institute through force, fear or deceit, or whom the Superior accepts under the same influences;

one who has concealed his or her incorporation in an institute of consecrated life or society of apostolic life.

§2 An institute's own law can constitute other impediments even for the validity of admission, or attach other conditions.

Can. 644 Superiors are not to admit secular clerics to the novitiate without consulting their proper Ordinary; nor those who have debts which they are unable to meet.

Can. 645 §1 Before candidates are admitted to the novitiate they must produce proof of baptism and confirmation, and of their free status.

§2 The admission of clerics or others who had been admitted to another institute of consecrated life, to a society of apostolic life, or to a seminary, requires in addition the testimony of, respectively, the local Ordinary, or the major Superior of the institute or society, or the rector of the seminary.

§3 An institute's own law can demand further proofs concerning the suitability of candidates and their freedom from any impediment.

§4 The Superiors can seek other information, even under secrecy, if this seems necessary to them.




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