Memorandum Number 1006
Reconsideration of Decision 993.
The Judicial Council reconsiders Decision 993 on its own motion for the limited purpose of addressing the impact of its holding that Calendar Item 1167 from the 2004 General Conference was unconstitutional. Calendar Item 1167, in part, gave lay professing members the right of voice and vote on a committee on investigation where the respondent is a bishop, a clergy member, or a local pastor.
When the Judicial Council holds language of General Conference legislation that amends a paragraph of the Book of Discipline to be unconstitutional, the usual consequence is that the language reverts to its prior form with respect to the portion held unconstitutional. Thus, because of Decision 993, Â¶ 2703.1 and .2 of the 2004 Book of Discipline now reads:
Composition of the Committee on Investigation. 1. When respondent is a bishop. There shall be a committee on investigation elected by each jurisdictional or central conference. Nominations shall be made by the College of Bishops in consultation with the jurisdictional episcopacy committee. Further nominations may be offered from the floor of the jurisdictional or central conference. The committee shall consist of seven clergy in full connection (with not more than one clergyperson from each annual conference, if possible), two lay observers, and six alternate members, five of whom shall be clergypersons in full connection (with not more than one clergyperson from each annual conference, if possible) and one of whom shall be a layperson. If additional members or alternates are needed, they may be named by the College of Bishops. Committee members shall be in good standing and should be deemed of good character. The committee should reflect racial, ethnic, and gender diversity. The committee shall elect a chairperson and organize at the jurisdictional or central conference. Seven clergy or alternates seated as members of the committee shall constitute a quorum.
2. When respondent is a clergy member of an annual conference, a clergy member on honorable or administrative location or a local pastor. There shall be a committee on investigation consisting of seven clergy in full connection, two lay observers, and six alternate members, five of whom shall be clergy in full connection and one of whom shall be a lay observer. The committee shall be nominated by the presiding bishop in consultation with the board of ordained ministry (for clergy members) and the conference board of laity (for lay persons) and elected quadrennially by the annual conference. If additional members or alternates are needed, the annual conference may elect members to serve for the remainder of the quadrennium. Committee members shall be in good standing and should be deemed of good character. The committee should reflect racial, ethnic, and gender diversity. The committee on investigation shall elect a chair and organize at the annual conference. None of the members or alternates shall be members of the board of ordained ministry, the cabinet, or immediate family members of the above. Should a member of the committee on investigation have been a party to any of the prior proceedings in a case that finally comes before the committee, he or she shall be disqualified from sitting on the committee during its consideration of that case, and his or her place shall be taken by an alternate member. Seven members or alternates seated as members of the committee shall constitute a quorum.
Paragraph 2703.3 and .4 of the 2004 Discipline is not impacted by Decision 993 and remains unchanged as printed in the 2004 Discipline.
Paragraph 2703 of the 2004 Book of Discipline is restated to account for the holding of Decision 993.
Shamwange P. Kyungu was absent. C. Rex Bevins, the first clergy alternate, participated in this decision.