Thinking about Being a Delegate?

What Diocesan Synod Delegates do:

The primary responsibility of delegates to synod is to participate in any meeting of the Diocesan Synod that may be called.  Normally, this will mean attending one meeting over a three year period.  The meetings are three days long and include reports on the operation of the diocese, resolutions for discussion and decision, election of officers, and a presentation from a guest speaker.  There may occasionally be a special meeting of the synod called in addition but this would only be under very particular circumstances.

Synod delegates are called to vote according to their conscience and what they think is best for the diocese while being mindful of the needs of their particular congregation.  Synod delegates are not expected to vote the way congregational leadership wants nor are they expected to try and assess what everyone in their congregation thinks is best on every issue.  This is why it is important for congregations to elect people as delegates who are thoughtful Christians who are trusted by the congregation.

Any delegate can propose a resolution for discussion.  This is an important piece of the work of Synod and it is best to prepare resolutions in advance of the synod meeting if possible.  A resolution has a much better chance of being discussed at synod if it is prepared in advance (see Canon 4 for the details of this process).  Resolutions must be submitted to the Resolutions Committee using a special form which requires a rationale for the resolution. Resolutions can cover any number of topics from policy to practice.  Canonical changes, however, follow a different process and cannot be moved from the floor of a synod meeting already in progress though they can be referred to committee for study (see Canon 24 for the process of amending a canon).   

Also, any delegate may be nominated for any elected position for which they are eligible (ie. any lay synod delegate may be nominated as lay secretary).  As delegates prepare for Synod 2018 it would be helpful to review the elected positions and prayerfully consider whether to seek nomination and election.  The various committees and offices elected by the Synod do important work between synod meetings and are essential to the healthy functioning of our diocese.  They are also an excellent way to learn more about our church!

 WHO’S WHO?

1.    The Bishop

  •  Current Bishop:  The Most Rev John E. Privett, the ninth bishop of the Diocese of Kootenay
  •  Consecrated bishop September 17, 2005
  •  Is the Chair of Synod when it is in session. He can appoint the Chancellor or any other officer of Synod to chair the meeting at any time.

2.   The Chancellor

  • Current Chancellor: Mr. Geord Holland, LLB
  • Appointed by the Bishop
  • Is the chief legal officer of the Diocese
  • Advises the Bishop on procedure during Synod as well as the Resolutions Committee
  • A member of the Canons Committee of the Diocese.
  • If there are issues of discipline or legal matters affecting the diocese, the Chancellor is the first lawyer with whom the Bishop consults.
  • Reviews deeds and legal documents that involve the Synod. If your parish wants to purchase or sell property, the Chancellor will act as your lawyer, as it is really the Diocese doing the buying and selling.
  • Sits on Diocesan Council and Administration Committee
  • Is a signing officer of the Diocese.

3.    The Vice-Chancellor and Registrar

  • Current Registrar and Vice-Chancellor:  Vacant
  • Endorses all lay and clergy licenses, after the Bishop has signed and sealed them.
  • Responsible for the supervision of all official registers of the Diocese
  • Sits on Diocesan council and Administration Committee
  • Is a signing officer of the diocese
  • Acts as legal back-up in the absence of the Chancellor

4.     The Dean

  • Is the incumbent of the Cathedral
  • Acts as mentor to Diocesan clergy
  • Is a signing officer of the Diocese
  • Often acts as Commissary for the Bishop

5.   The Clerical and Lay Secretaries

  • Current Clerical Secretary:  The Rev. Rick Paulin
  • Current Lay Secretary:  Ms. Helen Hall
  • Responsible for ensuring the orderly recording of the minutes of the meetings of Synod, Diocesan Council and the Administration Committee of the Diocese
  • Are elected first thing at Synod
  • Are signing officers of the Diocese

6.   The Treasurer

  • Current Treasurer:  Mr. Gerald Fitz-Gerald
  • Appointed by the Bishop
  • Responsible for the oversight of the finances of the diocese, in consultation with the Bishop, Administration Committee and Bonnie Bailey, Finance Manager
  • Sits on Diocesan Council, the Administration Committee, as well as other financial committees of the Diocese

7.   Executive Officer

  • Current Executive Officer:  The Ven. Trevor Freeman
  • Assists the Bishop in oversight of the Diocese, working with parishes, supporting clergy and representing the Bishop on many Diocesan Committees
  • During Synod sits at the front with the Bishop working as an extension of the Bishop’s ministry of oversight
  • Not an officer of Synod but is a signing officer for Synod

 8.   Sessional Committees

      The Bishop may appoint Committees to begin work before Synod and during Synod after which their work is complete.

  • The Scrutineers are persons appointed to count ballots and tabulate election results.
  • The Nominations Committee has responsibility for the nomination of suitable candidates for Diocesan Council and other elected positions.
  • The Resolutions Committee is responsible to be sure that the motions put forward are proper and in the best language to be clearly understood and debated.
  • The Synod Planning and Agenda Committee, who in consultation with the Bishop, plans the theme and programme of Synod
  • Any other committee the Bishop feels is appropriate.

9.   Diocesan Staff

  • Executive Officer:  Trevor Freeman (part-time)
  • Administrative Assistant:  Kathryn Lockhart (part-time)
  • Finance Manager: Bonnie Bailey (full-time)
  • Archivist:  Kathryn Lockhart (part-time)

 WHAT’S WHAT?     The Process Simplified

Nominations         

Simply fill out the nomination form with the name of the person you wish to nominate. Get a second person to nominate with you and have the nominee sign the appropriate place on the form and fill out the space for information at the bottom. Give it to a member of the Nominations Committee by 3:00 p.m. on Saturday.

Resolutions

Write out your proposed resolution on the special form and give it to a member of the Resolutions Committee for their comment and reflection. At the same time, when notice of motion is called for, rise and give synod the content of your motion as it was written. Motions will be discussed in the order that they are received. If there is not sufficient time at synod for all motions to be debated, those left over are referred to the Diocesan Council for debate. The Council acts as synod between synods.  Notice of motion will be open until 5:00 p.m. on Saturday.

Debate

When a motion is moved and seconded on the floor of Synod, the first speaker is the mover of the motion. For there to be any further conversation before the vote is taken, the second speaker must either speak against the motion, ask a question or move amendment.