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Standing Committee News

The Standing Committee of the General Synod met in an online format on Wednesday, 14th October 2020.

The Archbishop of Armagh congratulated the Revd Malcolm Kingston on attending his first meeting of Standing Committee as an Honorary Secretary.  Mr Kingston opened with a reading of Psalm 97 and in prayer, asking for God’s guidance for those in political leadership, strength and sound judgment for health professionals, and the protection of vulnerable people, and that the Church’s members would be messengers of hope and peace at this time.

The Revd Malcolm Kingston is the new Clerical Honorary Secretary for the Province of Armagh.
The Revd Malcolm Kingston is the new Clerical Honorary Secretary for the Province of Armagh.

The Assessor summarised the current legal position in relation to meetings of General Synod.  The Constitution of the Church of Ireland requires that General Synod will meet in such place as determined by Standing Committee.

The limitations on public meetings, as part of public health restrictions in each jurisdiction on the island, had therefore initially meant that it was not lawfully possible for General Synod to meet this year.  Subsequently, the Civil Law and Criminal Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2020, enacted by the Oireachtas, has permitted the holding of meetings – in an electronic format – of governing bodies of charities registered in the Republic of Ireland, provided that the platform allows members to hear the proceedings of the meeting and to speak at the meeting.

Standing Committee approved the following resolution: ‘That the Standing Committee authorises the Honorary Secretaries to arrange a remote meeting of the General Synod of 2020, whereby members are able to participate by means of electronic communications technology in such meeting, to be held on 1st, 2nd, and, if necessary, 3rd, of December, and further authorises the Honorary Secretaries to propose the hours for the General Synod for each day and to conclude any necessary contractual arrangements for the holding of such remote meeting.’

The Archbishop of Armagh closed the meeting with a collect.

For further information please contact:

Church of Ireland Press Office 
Church of Ireland House 
61–67 Donegall Street 
Belfast, BT1 2QH 

Email: Press Office

Peter Cheney

+44 (0)7774 295 369

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