The Society for the Law of the Eastern Churches 

Society for the Law of the Eastern Churches 
c/o Department for Legal Philosophy

Institut für Rechtsphilosophie

Schenkenstraße 8-104. Stock, Stiege 2

1010 Wien, Austria

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This page is dedicated to recent news and events from the members of our Society which are of interest to our Society, but may not be directly related to the its own endeavors. This can include, but is not limited to, upcoming conferences our members are organizing, upcoming talks they are giving, publications they would like to announce, and other similar announcements. 






































The Society for the Law of the Eastern Churches would like to wish a heartfelt congratulations to Fr. Dan Smilanic on his new position as the Judicial Vicar for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Gaylord, Michigan. 





An International Conference sponsored by Georgetown University, Oxford University, and Tübingen University will be taking place in Stuttgart, Germany between 19-21 July, 2019.

The conference theme will be: "Stolen Churches” or “Bridges to Orthodoxy”? Impulses for Theological Dialogue Between Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Churches

Please see the PDF below for more details:







First International Conference Organised by the International Orthodox Theological Association (IOTA)

Pan-Orthodox Unity and Conciliarity


       From January 9 - 12, 2019, IOTA, constituted as an association in 2017, organized its first international conference in Iaşi (Romania). Our President, Prof. Astrid Kaptijn, participated in the conference to represent our Society.


        Under the title “Pan-Orthodox Unity and Conciliarity” different parallel sessions were proposed, some concentrated on classical disciplines like Bible studies, patristics, Church history, dogmatic theology, missiology, canon law, or sacred art, others focused on a specific topic such as ecumenical dialogue, Church in the modern world, or autocephaly in Ukraine.


       The keynote address was given by Metropolitan Kallistos of Diokleia. His Excellency spoke in a general way about unity and synodality in the Church, applying his assertions to the events in Ukraine, and then turned more specifically to the Great and Holy Synod of Crete. His conclusion was that it can be criticised for many reasons (the real problems were not discussed, the representation of the different Churches and the procedures, for instance regarding the votes, were not ideal), but the positive aspect is that, finally, it took place.  The long applause after his talk reflected the appreciation of the audience.


       Some 280 scholars participated in the conference, many of them were also speakers. A majority of the participants came from the USA and Canada, but Great Britain, the Scandinavian countries, Germany and, of course, Romania, as well as Greece were also present. Some participants came from Australia and Asia. In all, some more than 40 countries and 6 continents were represented. Some participants came from other Churches: Coptic Orthodox, Roman and Greek Catholic, Anglican, Reformed, and Evangelical.


       The origin of the participants showed the diversity of Orthodoxy, but also expressed the extension of the Orthodox diaspora. On the other hand, it also was clear that Orthodoxy in diaspora attracts a lot of persons of other religions who convert to the Orthodox Churches. 


       The conference presented a broad overview of theological developments and current discussions in Orthodoxy and gave the opportunity to establish many interesting, collegial contacts. The local “touch” has been assumed by His Eminence, Metropolitan Teofan of Moldavia and Bucovina, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Iaşi, through the different liturgical events, visits, and several receptions. The tourist aspect was not forgotten as the participants could take part in two excursions to visit several monasteries, museums, and churches.  


       It was a highly interesting and encouraging event. The next conference is planned in four years (the president of IOTA, prof. Paul Gavrilyuk, spoke of the “Orthodox Olympics”).

       In the meantime, further information and details can be found on their website or on youtube: