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Commission on Episcopal Ministry and Structures

Commission on Episcopal Ministry and Structures

The Commission on Episcopal Ministry and Structures was established by General Synod in 2012 to consider the issues identified by the Review of Episcopal Ministry and Structures Working Group and any other associated matters that may be brought forward, and report to General Synod with conclusions and recommendations on appropriate future arrangements for episcopal ministry and structures in the Church of Ireland.

The Commission was asked to articulate a theology of episcopacy and examine the missiology and ecclesiology of the Church of Ireland, reflecting on the Scriptures, building upon our heritage, and bringing fresh perspectives to the episcopal needs of the Church of Ireland. The mission of the Church was the focus of its work.

The Commission considered how episcopacy has evolved in the Church of Ireland and reviewed different models of episcopal ministry and structures in the Anglican Communion and other churches.

The Commission examined the Constitution of the Church of Ireland and identified any necessary or desirable amendments to facilitate implementation of its recommendations.  The Commission considered practical and administrative questions relating to episcopal needs and structures facing the Church of Ireland, in particular:

  • the key functions and roles of bishops;
  • models of episcopacy;
  • desirable skills of bishops and appropriate training;
  • selection of bishops, including the role of electoral colleges;
  • resources needed to support episcopacy and episcopal families;
  • funding of episcopal ministry;
  • diocesan structures and geographical boundaries;
  • provincial structures and roles of Archbishops of Armagh and of Dublin.

It sought relevant information from dioceses and other sources, including statistical data, to provide a satisfactory evidential basis for its recommendations.

Resources published by this committee may be found in the resources section.