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Decision No. 209

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April 30 1964
In Re: Tenure of Members of the Methodist Committee for Overseas Relief

Digest of Case

The provisions of Paragraph 1104 of the 1960 Discipline limiting the tenure of members of any division, board, commission or council to twelve consecutive years do not apply to or limit the tenure of members of the Methodist Committee for Overseas Relief.

Statement of Facts

The Methodist Committee for Overseas Relief presents its petition for a declaratory decision interpreting the provisions of Paragraph 1104 of the 1960 Discipline as the same relates to the tenure in office of members of the Committee who are bishops. The committee asks "Can a Bishop be exempted from the limitations of tenure prescribed by Paragraph 1104 of the Discipline - as it applies to the Methodist Committee for Overseas Relief?" JURISDICTION The Judicial Council has jurisdiction in this matter under the provisions of Paragraph 914.2 of the 1960 Discipline. ANALYSIS Part VII of the 1960 Discipline consisting of 16 chapters is entitled and relates to the administrative agencies of the Church. Chapter VII of this Part is entitled "Methodist Committee for Overseas Relief" and contains the law of the Church relating to the organization and administration of this committee. Paragraph 1311, a part of this chapter, provides that there shall be a "Methodist Committee for Overseas Relief composed of twelve members." It has been held by the Judicial Council (Decision No. 205, April 29, 1964) that the General Conference, as the legislative body of the Church, by its specific reference to certain designated categories of bodies of the Church in Paragraph 1104 and its omission to mention others therein, intended that those bodies of the Church not designated as divisions, boards, commissions or councils be excluded and excepted from the provisions of that paragraph limiting tenure of members to twelve consecutive years. In that decision it was held that the provisions of Paragraph 1104 of the 1960 Discipline limiting the tenure of members of any division, board, commission or council to twelve consecutive years did not apply to or limit the tenure of members of bodies designated as "Committees."

Decision

It is therefore the decision of the Judicial Council that since Paragraph 1104 of the 1960 Discipline does not include the word "Committees" in its limiting provisions, it is not applicable to members of the Methodist Committee for Overseas Relief whether they be bishops, ministers or laymen.

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