VATICAN CITY (CNS): The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith is to participate in an inventory of archival material on the Inquisition to assist international research.
Secretary of the doctrinal congregation, Archbishop Angelo Amato, signed a collaboration agreement on November 9 with representatives of the Italian Ministry of Cultural Goods and the University of Trieste’s Centre for Research on the Inquisition.
Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls said the project would attempt to catalogue documents held in Church, state and private archives, as well as Italian and foreign libraries.
The documents will include those related to the Roman Inquisition, which began in the 16th century, the earlier Spanish Inquisition and similar trials conducted by secular authorities for “heresy, witchcraft and other crimes against the faith”, the Vatican spokesman said.
The inventory is meant not only to safeguard the documentation, “but also will facilitate knowledge in many fields of research”, Mr Navarro-Valls said.
Creating a unified catalogue of the material in Church, state and private hands would make it easier for scholars to find the information they need for their research, he said.