The Pontifical Oriental Institute (Orientale), is a Catholic institution of higher education located in Rome. The plan of creating a school of higher learning for Eastern Christianity had been on the agenda of the Catholic Church since at least Pope Leo XIII, but it was only realized in 1917 by Pope Benedict XV (1914-1921). The Orientale forms part of the consortium of the Pontifical Gregorian University (founded in 1551) and the Pontifical Biblical Institute (founded in 1909), both in Rome. All three institutions are run by the Society of Jesus (Jesuits). While the Orientale depends on the Holy See, its management is entrusted to the Society of Jesus. Its Chancellor is the Prefect of the Congregation for the Eastern Churches and its Vice-chancellor is the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, while the Congregation for Catholic Education is the dicastery competent for approving the academic programmes of the Orientale.
The student population for the academic year 2018-2019: 351 in the Faculty of Eastern Ecclesiastical Sciences (SEO); 71 in the Faculty of Eastern Canon Law (DCO); Total: 422, of whom 242 were guest students. Each year, another approximately 400 scholars visit the library for research purposes.
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