05 - Governance and Structure
Resolved, the House of Bishops concurring, That Title I, Canon 1, Section 2 be stricken in its entirety and replaced to read as follows:
Sec. 2 (a) The General Convention by Canon may establish Standing Commissions to study and draft policy proposals on major subjects considered to be of continuing concern to the mission of the Church. The Canon shall specify the duties of each Standing Commission. Standing Commissions shall be composed of five Bishops, five Priests and/or Deacons of this Church and ten Lay Persons, who shall be confirmed adult communicants of this Church in good standing. The Priests, Deacons, and Lay Persons are not required to be Deputies to General Convention.
(b) The terms of all members of Standing Commissions shall be equal to the interval between the regular meeting of the General Convention preceding their appointment and the adjournment of the second succeeding regular meeting of the General Convention, and such terms shall be rotated so that, as near as may be, the term of one-half of the members shall expire at the conclusion of each regular meeting of the General Convention. The term of a member shall become vacant in the event of two absences from meetings of the Commission occurring in the interval between successive regular meetings of the General Convention unless excused by the Commission for good cause.
(c) The Presiding Bishop shall appoint the Episcopal members and the President of the House of Deputies shall appoint the Lay and other Clerical members of each Commission as soon as practicable after the adjournment of the General Convention, but not later than 90 days after adjournment. Episcopal members appointed after the adjournment of any General Convention at which a Presiding Bishop is elected shall be appointed by the Presiding Bishop-elect. Vacancies shall be filled in similar manner; provided, however, that vacancies occurring within one year after the next regular General Convention shall not be filled unless requested by the Commission.
(d) The Presiding Bishop and the President of the House of Deputies shall jointly appoint members of the Executive Council as liaisons to facilitate communication between the Executive Council and each Standing Commission and the coordination of the work of each Standing Commission and the committees of Executive Council. Notice of such appointments shall be given to the Secretary of General Convention. These liaisons shall not be members of the Commission but shall have seat and voice. The reasonable expenses of these liaisons shall be provided for by the Executive Council. Each Commission shall have staff support from the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society designated by the Presiding Bishop. Each Commission may constitute committees from among members or non-members of the Commission, and, subject to the Commission's budget, engage the services of consultants and coordinators necessary to complete its work.
(e) The Presiding Bishop and the President of the House of Deputies shall be members ex officiis of every Commission, or may appoint personal representatives to attend any meeting in their stead, but without vote.
(f) The Executive Officer of the General Convention shall, not later than 120 days following the meeting of the General Convention, notify the members of the General Convention of the Commission appointments and their duty to present reports to the next Convention and shall schedule an organizational meeting for each Commission. One year prior to the opening day of the Convention, the Executive Officer of the General Convention shall remind the Chairs and Secretaries of all Commissions of this duty.
(g) Every Commission shall elect a chair, vice chair, and secretary.
(h) The General Convention may refer a relevant matter to a Commission for its consideration; but may not direct the Commission to reach any particular conclusion.
(i) A Commission shall give timely and appropriate notice to the Church of the time, place, and agendas of meetings; and instructions on how members of the Church may address their views to the Commission.
(j) Every Commission shall prepare a report, which, together with any minority report, shall be sent, not later than 150 days prior to the opening day of each Convention, to the Executive Officer of the General Convention, who shall distribute the same to all members of the Convention.
(k) The Report of every Commission presented at the General Convention shall:
Set forth the names of its original members, any changes in membership, the names of all those who concur in, and all those who dissent from, its recommendations.
Summarize the work of the Commission, including the various matters studied, the recommendations for action by the General Convention, and drafts of Resolutions proposed for adoption to implement the recommendations of the Commission.
Include a detailed report of all receipts and expenditures, including moneys received from any source whatsoever, and if it recommends that it be continued, the estimated requirements for the ensuing interval until the next regular meeting of the General Convention.
(l) Every Commission, as a condition precedent to the presentation and reception of any report to General Convention in which such Commission proposes the adoption of any Resolution, shall, by vote, authorize a member or members of General Convention, who, if possible, shall be a member of the Commission, with such limitations as the Commission may impose, to accept or reject, on behalf of the Commission, any amendments proposed by General Convention to any such Resolution; provided, however, that no such amendment may change the substance of the proposal, but shall be primarily for the purpose of correcting errors. The name of the member or members of General Convention upon whom such authority has been conferred, and the limitations of authority, shall be communicated in writing to the Presiding Officers of General Convention not later than the presentation of such report to the General Convention.
(m) Every Commission whose Report requests expenditure out of the funds of the General Convention (except for the printing of the Report) shall present to the Joint Standing Committee on Program, Budget, and Finance its written request, on or before the first business day of the session. Resolutions requiring additional expenditures shall be immediately referred to the Joint Standing Committee on Program, Budget, and Finance. No resolution involving such expenditures shall be considered unless so presented and until after report of the Joint Standing Committee on Program, Budget, and Finance.
(n) There shall be the following Standing Commissions:
(1) A Standing Commission on Structure, Governance, Constitution and Canons. It shall be the duty of the Commission to:
Review such proposed amendments to the Constitution and Canons as may be submitted to the Commission, placing each such proposed amendment in proper Constitutional or Canonical form, including all amendments necessary to effect the proposed change. The Commission shall express its views with respect to the substance of any such proposal only to the proponent thereof; provided, however, that no member of the Commission shall, by reason of membership, be deemed to be disabled from expressing, before a Legislative Committee or on the floor of the General Convention, personal views with respect to the substance of any such proposed amendment.
Conduct a continuing comprehensive review of the Constitution and Canons with respect to their internal consistency and clarity, and on the basis of such a review, propose to the General Convention such technical amendments to the Constitution and Canons as in the opinion of the Commission are necessary or desirable in order to achieve such consistency and clarity without altering the substance of any Constitutional and Canonical provisions; provided, however, that the Commission shall propose, for the consideration of the appropriate Legislative Committees of the General Convention, such amendments to the Constitution and Canons as in the opinion of the Commission are technically desirable but involve a substantive alteration of a Constitutional or Canonical provision.
On the basis of such review, suggest to the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society such amendments to its By-laws as in the opinion of the Commission are necessary or desirable in order to conform the same to the Constitution and Canons.
Conduct a continuing and comprehensive review and update of the authorized “Annotated Constitution and Canons for the Government of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America otherwise known as The Episcopal Church” to reflect actions of General Convention which amend the Constitution and Canons and, in the discretion of the Commission, develop other materials which are appropriate to the purpose of the “Annotated Constitution and Canons,” and facilitate the publication of this document and related materials. The Commission may provide or support forums to promote commentary, discussion, and understanding of the Constitution and Canons.
Discharge such other duties as shall from time to time be assigned by the General Convention.
Study and make recommendations concerning the structure of the General Convention and of The Episcopal Church. It shall, from time to time, review the operation of the several Committees, Commissions, and Boards to determine the necessity for their continuance and the effectiveness of their functions and to bring about a coordination of their efforts. Whenever a proposal is made for the creation of a new Committee, Commission, Board or Agency, it shall, wherever feasible, be referred to this Standing Commission for its consideration and advice.
(2) A Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music. The Custodian of the Book of Common Prayer shall be a member ex officio with voice, but without vote. It shall be the duty of the Commission to:
Discharge such duties as shall be assigned to it by the General Convention as to policies and strategies concerning the common worship of this Church.
Collect, collate, and catalogue material bearing upon possible future revisions of the Book of Common Prayer.
Cause to be prepared and to present to the General Convention recommendations concerning the Lectionary, Psalter, and offices for special occasions as authorized or directed by the General Convention or Convocation of Bishops.
Recommend to the General Convention authorized translations of the Holy Scripture from which the Lessons prescribed in the Book of Common Prayer are to be read.
Receive and evaluate requests for consideration of individuals or groups to be included in the Calendar of the Church year and make recommendations thereon to the General Convention for acceptance or rejection.
Collect, collate, and catalogue material bearing upon possible future revisions of The Hymnal 1982 and other musical publications regularly in use in this Church, and encourage the composition of new musical materials.
Cause to be prepared and present to the General Convention recommendations concerning the musical settings of liturgical texts and rubrics, and norms as to liturgical music and the manner of its rendition.
At the direction of the General Convention, to serve the Church in matters pertaining to policies and strategies concerning Church music.
(o) At the first meeting of the Executive Council following the adjournment of a General Convention, and subject to budgeted funds available for the purpose, the Presiding Bishop and the President of the House of Deputies, having reviewed the resolutions adopted by the General Convention that provide for any study or further action, shall thereupon recommend to Executive Council, the creation of such study committees and task forces as may be necessary to complete that work. Any Executive Council resolution creating a task force or study committee shall specify the size and composition, the clear and express duties assigned, the time for completion of the work assigned, to whom the body’s report is to be made, and the amount and source of the funding for the body. The members of each such body shall be jointly appointed by the Presiding Bishop and the President of the House of Deputies, and the composition of such committees and task forces shall reflect the diverse voices of the Church and a balance of the Church’s orders consistent with the historic polity of the Church. Those committees and task forces so appointed shall expire at the beginning of the next General Convention following, unless reappointed by the Presiding Bishop and President of the House of Deputies and reauthorized by the Executive Council.