In December 1886 Father Dehon began the process of obtaining approval for his Institute. In accordance with the legislation in force at the time, he first collected a series of documents that testified to the Institute: constitutions, status of the houses and staff, and recommendations from bishops. After some time, twenty-seven testimonies from cardinals, archbishops and bishops had arrived in Rome in favour of the young Institute, and on February 25, 1888, the Sacred Congregation of Bishops and Regulars issued the decree of approval, which was signed by its prefect, Cardinal Masotti. The “Decretum Laudis” was received with great joy after many difficulties and many storms.
- Decretum Laudis (english)
- Decretum Laudis p. 1 (JPG)
- Decretum Laudis p. 2 (JPG)
- Decretum Laudis v. 1 (PDF)
- Decretum Laudis v. 2 (PDF)
A different story of our origins
One can tell the story of our Congregation, especially the story of our origins, in many different ways. Starting with a controversial published in Dehoniana, Fr. Juan José Arnaiz Ecker, former vice-director of the Centro Studi Dehoniani, examines the juridical aspects of the birth of our Institute. In fact, many years of Fr. Dehon’s life are marked by countless attempts to be recognised by the Holy See as a Congregation. After the dissolution of the Oblates of the Sacred Heart in 1883, the creation of the Priests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in 1884 as a diocesan society, the decretum laudis of 25.2.1888 constitutes an important step – with conflicting interpretations already at the time… In any case, many initiatives were still needed, and not a few resistances had to be overcome, in order to arrive at the definitive approval of the Congregation in 1906 and that of the Constitutions in 1923. The study, entitled “Generazione canonica della Congregazione SCJ” (Canonical Generation of the Congregation of the SCJ) follows and documents this process, presenting the different protagonists of the process with their different interests…