Judicial Council Decisions Search
Memorandum No. 1229
October 26 2012
In Re: Request from the College of Bishops of the South Central Jurisdiction for a Declaratory Decision as to the Constitutionality, Meaning, Application, and Effect of ¶ 408.3a, with Reference to ¶¶ 16.5, 50, 358.3, and 362.2
The College of Bishops of the South Central Jurisdiction on June 17, 2012, voted to request a declaratory decision by the Judicial Council “on the constitutionality, meaning, application and effect of paragraph 408.3a.” The request came before a hearing called by the South Central Jurisdiction Committee on Episcopacy regarding a hearing date that had been set for the consideration of involuntary retirement of a bishop from that jurisdiction. The authority for the consideration of involuntary retirement was ¶408.3(a) of the 2008 Discipline. In the College of Bishops’ request for a declaratory decision the following questions were listed:
1. Is ¶ 408.3a in conflict with any part of the Constitution, particularly ¶¶ 50 and 16.5? 2. Since a Bishop retains status as an Elder, do the following paragraphs of the 2008 Book of Discipline have analogous implications? ¶ 358.3 (Speaks to the necessity for action by a body, i.e. Jurisdictional Conference, rather than simply a Committee or Board); ¶ 362.2 ( c) (Involuntary Retirement is a recommendation to a larger body, rather than an action of a smaller Committee or Board) 3. If there is no constitutional conflict, what procedures guide the Committee to ensure due process? 4. If there is a conflict with any part of the Constitution, what aspects of ¶ 408 provide a process by which the South Central Jurisdictional Conference and/or its Episcopacy Committee has the authority to place one of its bishops on retired status involuntarily?