About the author: The Rev. Dr. Wojciech Kowal, O. M. I. Received master’s degrees in theology at the Pontifical Faculty of Theology in Poland and in cosmology from the Catholic University in Poland. He completed his study in canon law at Saint Paul University in Ottawa, receiving his M.C.L., J.C.L., J.C.D., and PhD degrees. He served as chancellor of the Archdiocesan Curia in Keewatin-Le Pas, Manitoba, and is currently lecturer in canon law at Saint Paul University, Ottawa.2000 0-7734-7773-X
This study formulates a theory of understanding which incorporates pertinent results of hermeneutical reflection, for the interpretation of canon law, in particular, Canon 17 of the 1983 Code. Hermeneutics creates the awareness that the meaning of a legal text is not simply offered to a passive subject-interpreter in any routine procedure, but presents itself as a dynamic and creative reality requiring constant interaction between various subjective and objective, textual and extra-textual factors.