A148 Amend Canons III.11.1, III.11.3 and III.11.9(c)

Resolved, the House of Bishops concurring, That Canon III.11.1 is hereby amended to add the following, And the subsequent subsections renumbered accordingly:

(c) Prior to any person’s name being placed on the ballot in nomination for election as a Bishop in a diocese, whether by the nominating body or by petition, floor nomination or in any other way, the diocese shall have:

(i) conducted a thorough background check of each nominee according to criteria established by the Standing Committee. Such background check to include but not be limited to criminal records, credit checks, reference checks, sex offender registry checks, verification of education, employment and ordination and review of all available records reflecting complaints, charges and allegations while an ordained person;

(ii) each nominee evaluated by a licensed medical doctor approved by the Standing Committee, using medical forms provided by the Office of Pastoral Development;

(iii) each nominee evaluated by a licensed psychologist psychiatrist approved by the Standing Committee, with psychiatric referral if desired or necessary Office of Pastoral Development;

(iv) each nominee evaluated for substance, chemical and alcohol use and abuse misuse whether as part of the medical examination, psychological psychiatric examination or otherwise by licensed professionals approved by the Standing Committee Office of Pastoral Development;

Reports of all (a) background checks, (b) medical and psychiatric evaluations, (c) evaluations of substance, chemical and alcohol use and misuse and (d) assessments of other forms of addiction background checks, medical, psychological and substance, chemical or alcohol use and abuse evaluations shall be kept permanently on file in the Office of Pastoral Development and remain a part of the permanent diocesan record for the person elected and consented to by Standing Committees and bishops exercising jurisdiction and Standing Committees.

And be it further

Resolved, That Canon III.11.1(b) is hereby amended to read as follows:

Canon III.11.1(b)

(b) In lieu of electing a Bishop, the Convention of a Diocese may request that an election be made on its behalf by the House of Bishops of the Province of which the Diocese is a part, subject to confirmation by the Provincial Synod, or it may request that an election be made on its behalf by the House of Bishops of the Episcopal Church.

  1. If either option in Sec. l(b) is chosen, a special Joint Nominating Committee shall be appointed unless the Diocesan Convention has otherwise provided for the nominating process. The Committee shall be composed of three persons from the Diocese, appointed by its Standing Committee, and three members of the electoral body, appointed by the President of that body. The Joint Nominating Committee shall elect its own officers and shall nominate three persons whose names it shall communicate to the Presiding Officer of the electoral body. The Presiding Officer shall communicate the names of the nominees to the electoral body at least three weeks before the election when the names shall be formally placed in nomination. Opportunity shall be given for nominations from the floor or by petition, in either case with provisions for adequate background checks.
  2. If either option in Sec. 1(b) is chosen, the background checks and evaluations required by Canon III.11.x(y) this Canon III.11.1(c) shall be carried out by the special Joint Nominating Committee unless the Diocesan Convention has otherwise provided for the nominating process. The evidence of the election shall be a certificate signed by the Presiding Officer of the electoral body and by its Secretary, with a testimonial signed by a constitutional majority of the body, in the form required in Canon III.11.3, which shall be sent to the Standing Committee of the Diocese on whose behalf the election was held. The Standing Committee shall thereupon proceed as set forth in Canon III.11.3

    And be it further

    Resolved, That Canon III.11.3 is hereby amended to read as follows:

    Canon III.11.3

    Sec. 3.

    (a) The Standing Committee of the Diocese for which the Bishop has been elected shall by its President, or by some other person or persons specially appointed, immediately send to the Presiding Bishop and to the Standing Committees of the several Dioceses a certificate of the election by the Secretary of Convention of the Diocese bearing a statement of receipt of:

    (1) evidence of the Bishop-elect’s having been duly ordered Deacon and Priest;

    (2) certificates from a licensed medical doctor, and licensed psychiatrist psychiatrist psychologist and licensed substance abuse professional, authorized by the Presiding Bishop, that they have thoroughly examined the Bishop-elect as to that person’s medical, psychological and psychiatric condition and for substance, chemical and alcohol use and abuse misuse and have not discovered any reason why the person would not be fit to undertake the work for which the person has been chosen. Forms and procedures agreed provided to by the Presiding Bishop and The Church Pension Fund Office of Pastoral Development shall be used for this purpose; and

    (3) evidence that a testimonial in the following form was signed by a constitutional majority of the Convention:

    And be it further

    Resolved, That Canon III.11.9(c) is hereby amended to read as follows:

    Canon III.11.9(c)

    (c) Missionary Bishops

    (1) The election of a person to be a Bishop in a Missionary Diocese shall be held in accordance with the procedures set forth in the Constitution and Canons of this Church.

    (2) The Convention of a Missionary Diocese may, in lieu of electing a Bishop, request that such election be made on its behalf by the Synod of the Province, or the House of Bishops of the Province subject to confirmation of the Provincial Council, or the Regional Council of Churches in communion with this Church of which the Diocese is a member. A Certificate of the Election, signed by the presiding officer and the Secretary of the Synod or Provincial House of Bishops, or Regional Council, and a testimonial in the form required in Canon III.11 signed by a constitutional majority of the Synod, Provincial House of Bishops or Regional Council, shall be transmitted by its presiding officer to the Standing Committee of the Missionary Diocese on whose behalf such election was made. The Standing Committee shall thereupon proceed as set forth in Canon III.11, the above Certification of Election and Testimonial serving in lieu of evidence of election and testimonial therein required. If this option is used the background checks and evaluations required by Canon III.11.1(b) shall be carried out by the Synod of the Province or the House of Bishops of the Province, whichever body conducts the election.

    (3) The Convention of a Missionary Diocese may, in lieu of electing a Bishop, request that such election may be made on its behalf by the House of Bishops. Such choice shall be subject to confirmation by a majority of the Standing Committees of the several Dioceses. The medical certificate as required in Canon III.11 shall also be required of Missionary Bishops-elect.

    (i) When the House of Bishops is to elect a Bishop for a Missionary Diocese within a given Province, the President of the Province may convene the Synod of the Province prior to the meeting of the House of Bishops at which a Bishop for such Missionary Diocese is to be elected. The Synod of the Province may thereupon nominate not exceeding three persons to the House of Bishops for that office. It shall be the duty of the President of the Province to transmit such nominations, if any be made, to the Presiding Officer of the House of Bishops, communicate the same to the Bishops, along with other nominations that have been made, in accordance with the Rules of Order of the House. Each Province containing a Missionary Diocese shall, by Ordinance, provide the manner of convening the Synod and making such nomination. If the Synod of the Province nominates persons as provided in this subsection, the background checks and evaluations required by Canon III.11.1(b) shall be carried out by Synod of the Province. The House of Bishops shall carry out the background checks and evaluations required by Canon III.11.1(b) for all persons nominated in accordance with the Rules of Order of the House.


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