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Day 1

Commentary on the Constitution of the Church of Ireland Launched

The Commentary on the Constitution of the Church of Ireland was launched at General Synod in Armagh this afternoon.

Sir Paul Girvan officially launched the commentary. He said that the Constitution comes to us from the past. It was the product of disestablishment.

The laws of the church are an aid to the advancement of the Kingdom not an end in themselves, he said. “It is not the be all and end all of the church’s existence because the real constitution comes from Jesus’s mandate to go out and make disciples of all men an bring the good news to the world,” he stated.

He said that the Constitution is a mixed bag and described the commentary as an attempt to provide background information and details on how the provisions work and what effect is to be given to them. The Constitution is something that evolves and continues to evolve to face up to new challenges, he added.

We also looked to the future and identified shortcomings and face up to shortcomings that need reform and given food for thought. We have put forward ideas which the honorary secretaries may bring forward.

He thanked everyone who participated in and contributed to the project. The book is a jewel in terms of its presentation. It is full of illustrations and photos which put each chapter in context.

Archbishop Richard Clarke thanked Sir Paul Girvan for his work on producing the commentary.