Index of Complementary Norms
When the revised Code of Canon Law was promulgated by Pope John Paul II in 1983, it contained eighty-four canons that call for or permit legislative action by episcopal conferences. Since that time the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (designated the National Conference of Catholic Bishops prior to July 1, 2001) has taken action on twenty-nine canons, thereby establishing particular legislation for the dioceses of the United States.
This website contains a compilation of the complementary norms approved by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. In some instances the bishops voted to retain existing norms or regulations, with due regard for any change or modification warranted by changes in the revised code; in other instances they revised existing norms or created new norms where necessary. Those actions requiring recognitio or approval from the Apostolic See in accord with canon 455§2 have been reviewed by the appropriate Roman dicastery.
It should be noted that the website does not contain the decrees of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops concerning liturgical matters in which the liturgical law of the Latin Church determines that episcopal conferences are competent to legislate.
It is our hope that this compilation will be a useful resource to bishops, canonists, chancery officials, and pastoral ministers. It is our intent to update this website periodically as additional particular legislation is established for the United States.