Memorandum Number 941

October 24, 2002

Review of Bishop's Decision of Law in the Illinois Great Rivers Annual Conference Related to a Resolution Establishing a Process of Cabinet Review of Clergy Who Participate in or Allow Events to Be Held in Their Church Buildings That Promote Dialogue on Homosexuality.


The bishop did not render a decision of law but made a parliamentary ruling. The annual conference was under the mistaken belief that a decision of law had been rendered. There is no disciplinary authority for the Judicial Council to assume jurisdiction to consider a parliamentary ruling by a presiding bishop.

Statement of Facts

At the June 2002 Illinois Great Rivers Annual Conference, " Resolution No. 212: Reconciling Methodists of the IGRAC" was presented for approval and adoption. A clergy member of the conference requested a ruling from the chair on the legality of the resolution. The bishop ruled the resolution out of order. The ruling of the bishop was a parliamentary ruling and not a decision of law. The Discipline does not vest the Judicial Council with authority to review parliamentary rulings.

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