Excerpt from the Foreword:
The origin of this book in an extensive votum presented, in 1966, to the Consultors of the Pontifical Commission for the Revision of the Code of Canon Law […] to examine for the first time the possible text of the canon on the rights and duties of the lay faithful in the Church […]. In that opinion, which was to have a decisive influence on the preparation of the project for the new ecclesiastical legislation, del Portillo grappled resolutely with a problem which had been very much at the fore in the work of the recently-concluded Second Vatican Council: that of the theological-canonical meaning of two concepts – faithful and lay person – which were often used interchangeably in ecclesiastical parlance but which differed from each other from an ontological perspective.
Cardinal Julian Herranz
President Emeritus of
the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts