Dicastery for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life
The competence of the Dicastery is to promote, encourage and regulate the practice of the evangelical counsels, how they are lived out in the approved forms of consecrated life and all matters concerning the life and activity of Societies of Apostolic Life throughout the Latin Church.
It pertains to the Dicastery to approve the Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, to erect them and also to grant permission for the validity of the establishment of an Institute of Consecrated Life or Society of Apostolic Life of diocesan right on the part of the Bishop.
Mergers, unions and suppressions of Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life are also reserved to the Dicastery.
The Dicastery is competent for approving and regulating forms of consecrated life that are new with respect to those already recognized by law.
It is the task of the Dicastery to erect or suppress unions, confederations, and federations of Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life.
The Dicastery works to ensure that Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life make progress in following Christ in conformity with the Gospel according to their proper charism stemming from the spirit of the founder and sound traditions, that they faithfully pursue their own ends and contribute effectively to the building up of the Church and to its mission in the world.
In accordance with canonical norms, the Dicastery deals with matters belonging to the competence of the Apostolic See regarding the life and activity of the Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, particularly with regard to:
1. the approval of Constitutions and their amendments;
2. ordinary government and discipline of members;
3. the incorporation and formation of members, including through specific norms and directives;
4. temporal goods and their administration;
5. the apostolate;
6. extraordinary measures of governance.
The following also belong to the competence of the Dicastery, according to the norm of law:
1. the transfer of a member to another approved form of consecrated life;
2. the extension of absence and exclaustration beyond the term granted by the supreme Moderators;
3. the indult for members in perpetual vows to depart from Institutes of Consecrated Life or Societies of Apostolic Life of Pontifical right;
4. imposed exclaustration;
5. the examination of appeals against the decree of dismissal of members.
It is the competence of the Dicastery to erect international Conferences of Major Superiors, to approve their statutes and to ensure that their activities are ordered to their proper ends.
The eremitical life and the Ordo Virginum are subject to the Dicastery inasmuch as they are forms of consecrated life.
It is the Dicastery’s task to establish associations of the Ordo Virginum at the international level.
The competence of the Dicastery also extends to Third Orders and associations of the faithful erected with a view to becoming an Institute of Consecrated Life or a Society of Apostolic Life.
Apostolic Constitution Praedicate Evangelium