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e., judex ) An Ordinary in ecclesiastical language, denotes any person possessing or exercising ordinary jurisdiction, i.e., jurisdiction connected permanently or at least in a stable way with an office, whether this connexion arises from Divine law, as in the case of popes and bishops, or from positive church law, as in the case mentioned below.

Ordinary jurisdiction is contrasted with delegated jurisdiction, a temporary communication of power made by a superior to an inferior; thus we speak of a delegated judge and an ordinary judge.

A person may be an ordinary within his own sphere, and at the same time have delegated powers for certain acts or the exercise of special authority.

Jurisdiction in the internal forum, being partial and exercised only in private matters, does not constitute an ordinary.

Parish priests, therefore, are not ordinaries, though they have jurisdiction in the internal forum, for they have not jurisdiction in the external forum, being incapable of legislating and acting as judges; their administration is the exercise of paternal authority rather than of jurisdiction properly so called. First, they are divided into those having territorial jurisdiction and those who have not.

As a rule ordinary jurisdiction is territorial as well as personal, as in the case of the pope and the bishops ; but ordinary jurisdiction may be restricted to certain persons, exempt from the local authority.

Such for instance is the jurisdiction of regular prelates, abbots, generals, and provincials of religious orders making solemn vows ; they can legislate, adjudicate and govern; consequently they are ordinaries; but their jurisdiction concerns individuals not localities; they are not, like the others, called local ordinaries, ordinarii locorum .

Superiors of congregations and institutes bound by simple vows are not ordinaries though they may enjoy a greater or less degree of administrative exemption. Bishops are the pastors and ordinary judges in their dioceses, appointed to govern their churches by the Holy Ghost ( Acts ).

The jurisdiction of local ordinaries arises from Divine law or ecclesiastical law. Certain bishops have, by ecclesiastical law, a mediate ordinary power over other bishops and dioceses ; these are the metropolitana, primates, and patriarchs.

The pope is the ordinary of the entire church and all the faithful; he has ordinary and immediate jurisdiction over all (Conc. In a lower rank, there is another class of ordinaries, viz., prelates who exercise jurisdiction in the external forum over a given territory, which is not a diocese, either in their own name, as in the case of prelates or abbots nullius or in the name of the pope, like years and prefects Apostolic until the erection of their territories into complete dioceses.

Local ordinaries being unable personally to perform all acts of their jurisdiction may and even ought to communicate it permanently to certain persons, without however, divesting themselves of their authority; if the duties of these persons are specified and determined by law, they also are ordinaries, but in a restricted and inferior sense.

This is vicarial jurisdiction, delegated as to its source, but ordinary as to its exercise, and which would be more accurately termed quasi-ordinary.

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