Separate commissions of government and Church

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This page is a translated version of the page Komisje odrębne rządu i Kościoła and the translation is 100% complete.

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SEPARATE COMMISSIONS OF GOVERNMENT AND CHURCH – separate special commissions, established without mutual agreement of the parties and in violation of the provisions of the Polish Concordat of 1993. These are: the Church Concordat Committee (CCC) and the Government Concordat Committee (GCC). Concordat envisages setting up a joint commission with a detailed scope of action including the development of a system of financing ecclesiastical institutions, goods and clergy for the needs of the Catholic Church in Poland. The CCC was unilaterally appointed by the Holy See on 11th May 1998; at the same time, its competence was extended compared to what was envisaged in the Concordat, by the implementation of the provisions of the Concordat and engaging in the problems of Church-state relations. The work of the CCC is supervised by the Apostolic Nuncio in Poland, its president is appointed by the Pope. The GCC was established on 25th May 1998 in response to the action of the Holy See, it is chaired by the minister competent for foreign affairs, and is composed of officials in the rank of secretary of state. Commissions are factual entities, acting without legal basis. They work independently, but they hold joint meetings. They operated intensively in years 1998-2002; during the sessions, numerous decisions were made and discussed, as regards the content of the drafts of various executive acts to the provisions of the Concordat. They concerned, for example, the implementation of the so-called concordat marriage, qualifications required of religion teachers in public schools, the mode of obtaining legal personality by the church institutions under the Polish law. In practice, the church side often treated the sessions of the concordat commissions as an additional sphere of pressure on the government – apart from the → Joint Commission of the Government of the Republic of Poland and the Conference of the Polish Episcopate [ B. Górowska ].

Literature: W. Adamczewski, Prace Komisji Konkordatowych, [w:] Prawo wyznaniowe w systemie prawa polskiego: materiały I Ogólnopolskiego Sympozjum Prawa Wyznaniowego, red. A. Mezglewski, Lublin 2004 ■ B. Górowska, Realizacja konkordatu polskiego w latach 1998–2008, [w:] Dziesięć lat polskiego konkordatu, red. C. Janik, P. Borecki, Warszawa 2009.