Resolved, the House of _______ concurring, That the 79th General Convention, pursuant to Canon I.1.2(n)(1)(v), create an Ecumenical and Interreligious Relations Working Group of the Standing Commission on Structure, Governance, Constitution and Canons (SCSGCC); and be it further
Resolved, That the Working Group will address matters of ecumenical and interreligious significance including but not limited to: responding to ecumenical and interreligious issues that may arise between meetings of General Convention; have primary responsibility for developing responses to ecumenical interreligious documents; assisting the Presiding Bishop, appropriate DFMS staff and the Executive Council with formulating and implementing ecumenical and interreligious policy; and providing such other assistance and counsel to the SCSGCC with respect to matters that come before the SCSGCC that have ecumenical or interreligious significance, in collaboration with the Deputy for Ecumenical and Interreligious Relations (or such other officer(s) that may be appropriate in the future); and be it further
Resolved, That the Ecumenical and Interreligious Working Group serve for as long as the SCSGCC determines that it needs the assistance and counsel of the Working Group; and be it further
Resolved, That the membership of the Ecumenical and Interreligious Working Group include up to three Bishops appointed by the Presiding Bishop for three-year terms and up to three Priests and/or Deacons and up to three lay persons appointed by the President of the House of Deputies for three-year terms, and members of the SCSGCC appointed by the SCSGCC; and be it further
Resolved, That the General Convention request the Joint Standing Commission on Program, Budget and Finance add $25,000 to the budget of the Standing Commission on Structure, Governance, Constitution and Canons for the triennium for the Ecumenical and Interreligious Relations Working Group.
The proposed Ecumenical and Interreligious Relations Working Group would be established by the resolution pursuant to Canon I.1.2(n)(1)(v), and not as a Task Force, and serve on a continuing basis until the Standing Commission on Structure, Governance, Constitution and Canons determined that it no longer needed the services of the Working Group. This Working Group would be constituted and serve in manner similar to that of the White & Dykman Working Group of the SCSGCC that exists pursuant to Canon I.1.2(n)(1)(iv). The purpose of the Working Group would be to provide the expertise and experience in ecumenical and interreligious matters needed by the SCSGCC and other bodies and offices of The Episcopal Church, including the Executive Council, when these matters arise, including but not limited to efforts to further our Church’s ecumenical and interreligious relationships.
When ecumenical and inter-religious matters are being formulated it is important that these matters conform to the polity of The Episcopal Church and the Constitution and Canons. The SCSGCC serves as the primary connector for these issues of polity, governance and structure with other bodies and offices of The Episcopal Church pursuant to Canon I.1.2(n)(1)(vi). Therefore, it would be an effective and efficient use of the Church’s resources to have the Church’s ecumenical and inter-religious work coordinated with that of the SCSGCC.
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