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MAY LAWS

A series of regulations enacted in Germany by the Prussian Landtag in 1873; they aimed to bring the Catholic Church in Germany entirely under state control, thereby detaching it from Rome. German civil authorities were to be sole arbiters of ecclesiastical discipline; clergy could leave their posts by manifesting their desire to a secular judge; church appointments depended on the state examinations solely; clergy dismissal was under state control; vacant sees became state dominated; religious communities were suppressed, nursing alone excepted. Any clergy dissenting were to forfeit all temporalities. These laws were in effect until 1887, when they were substantially modified. They were not abrogated until 1905.

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

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