Actions from the 2008 Diocesan Convention

The 223rd Diocesan Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts was held Nov. 7-8, 2008, in Hyannis.   Jump to attachments

ELECTIONS:

Provisional Clerical Deputies to General Convention (listed in order of election):

  • The Rev. Karen Montagno, Christ Church, Cambridge
  • The Rev. Sabeth Fitzgibbons, Church of Our Redeemer, Lexington
  • The Rev. Robert E. Hensley, Grace Church, Vineyard Haven
  • The Rev. Frederick P. Moser, Church of the Holy Spirit, Wayland

Provisional Lay Deputies to General Convention (listed in order of election):

  • Ms. Lallie Lloyd, Trinity Church, Boston
  • Mr. Christopher Ashley, St. John’s Church, Jamaica Plain
  • Ms. Helen Gordon, St. Barnabas’s Church, Falmouth
  • Mr. Stephen B. MacAusland, St. Paul’s Church, Dedham

Lay Member of Standing Committee:

  • Ms. Robin Preston, Grace Church, Everett

Members of the Barbara C. Harris Camp and Conference Center Board of Directors:

  • Mr. Zachary Dunn, Grace Church, Everett
  • The Rev. Martha Hubbard, St. Paul’s Church, Newburyport

Uncontested Elections:

Clerical Member of Standing Committee

  • The Rev. Johanna Barrett, Trinity Church, Topsfield

Clerical Deputy to Provincial Synod

  • The Rev. Elizabeth Steinhauser, St. Stephen’s Church, Boston

Lay Deputy to Provincial Synod

  • Ms. Nancy Jeanne Martin, Trinity Church, Boston

Clerical Member of the Cathedral Chapter

  • The Rev. Dr. Katharine C. Black, Church of St. John the Evangelist, Boston

Lay Member of the Cathedral Chapter

  • Ms. Jane Covey, Cathedral Church of St. Paul, Boston

Member of Trustees of Donations

  • Ms. Ella Davilla Auchincloss, Church of the Redeemer, Chestnut Hill

Treasurer of the Diocese

  • Mr. James F. Gammill, Church of the Good Shepherd, Watertown

Secretary of the Diocese

  • Mr. Leon A. Brathwaite II, Church of the Good Shepherd, Waban
     

RESOLUTIONS:


Final Versions as Voted by the 223rd Annual Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts, Nov. 7-8, 2008, Hyannis

  1. Resolution creating a diocesan policy on immigration
    Resolved
    , that in response to the New Sanctuary Movement Resolution of the Executive Council of the General Convention, that this Diocese of Massachusetts will undertake a program to educate the clergy and congregations of this Diocese concerning the plight of refugees and immigrants, and will include information about immigration laws, enforcement issues and policies; and be it further
    Resolved, that this Diocese of Massachusetts, aware of the dehumanizing impact of the label “alien” as applied to immigrants, will direct all clergy and lay persons in our diocese to use instead the term “immigrant” or any other one that unequivocally reflects the humanity of foreign-born persons, and will encourage the general population to do the same; and be it further
    Resolved, that this Diocese of Massachusetts, consistent with the New Sanctuary Movement Resolution of the Executive Council, encourage clergy and lay persons in our diocese, after careful consideration and in consultation with the Bishop’s Office, to assist those seeking protection from detention and deportation by granting them Sanctuary in our churches, which may include: shelter, pastoral and material support, and access to legal assistance and to education concerning immigration laws and rights of immigrants; and be it further
    Resolved, that this Diocese of Massachusetts encourage our congregations and its members to consider sponsoring refugees and asylum seekers in appropriate situations.
  2. Resolution in support of transgender civil rights and inclusion in the ministries of all the baptized
    Resolved
    , that the 223rd Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts supports the enactment of laws at the local, state and federal level that a) prohibit discrimination based on gender identity or the expression of one’s gender identity, and b) treat physical violence inflicted on the basis of a victim’s gender identity or expression as a hate crime; and be it further
    Resolved, that the Secretary of Convention convey this resolution to the Massachusetts State Legislature, and the Massachusetts representatives in the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives; and be it further
    Resolved, that this Convention submit to the General Convention the following resolution:
     Resolved that the words “gender identity and expression” be inserted into Title III,  Canon 1, Sec. 2 directly following the  words “sexual orientation” and before the  words “disabilities or age.”
     
  3. Resolution affirming actions of the 75th General Convention on slavery and reconciliation
    Resolved
    , that the 223rd Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts affirms the action of the 75th General Convention of The Episcopal Church, that the institution of slavery in the United States was a sin, that The Episcopal Church acknowledge its history of participation in this sin, its legacy and the lasting injury which it has inflicted on our society and on the Church; and be it further
    Resolved, that the 223rd Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts affirms the action of the 75th General Convention of The Episcopal Church, that the institution of slavery in the United States was a sin, that The Episcopal Church acknowledge its history of participation in this sin, its legacy and the lasting injury which it has inflicted on our society and on the Church; and be it further
    Resolved, that this 223rd Convention acknowledges that the Bishops of the Diocese of Massachusetts, in response to Resolution A123 of the 75th General Convention, entitled “Slavery & Racial Reconciliation,” have established and implemented a process for collecting and documenting detailed information on (a) the complicity of The Episcopal Church in Massachusetts in the institution of slavery and in the subsequent history of segregation and discrimination, and (b) the economic benefits The Episcopal Church and its parishes in Massachusetts derived from the institution of slavery, and we call on the Bishops to report the results of this inquiry, as requested, to the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church; be it further
    Resolved, that we call on individual parishes to engage in a similar process of inquiry and report as requested by the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church and report to the Bishops and Council of this Diocese on the progress and findings of this undertaking, and report to the 224th Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts; and be it further
    Resolved, that the Diocese of Massachusetts and its member parishes commit to becoming a transformed, anti-racist church and work toward healing, reconciliation and a restoration of wholeness to the family of God; and be it further
    Resolved, that the Diocese of Massachusetts which pioneered anti-racism training, commit to exploring ways of deepening our engagement with the legacy of slavery and discovering further ways forward; and be it further
    Resolved, that the Diocese of Massachusetts study and implement how the church can be “the repairer of the breach” (Isaiah 58:12), both materially and relationally and achieve the spiritual healing and reconciliation that will lead us to a new life in Christ.
  4. Resolution on Christian formation/education regarding the spirituality, history and practice of nonviolence in the Christian tradition
    Resolved
    , that the 223rd Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts urge a community of practice be convened at the Cathedral [Church] of St. Paul to focus on peacemaking and nonviolence whose task will be to design curricula, gather materials, and plan educational events for the diocese and its congregations in order to empower all those involved in Christian formation/education to engage in teaching/learning activities related to the spirituality, history, and practice of peacemaking and nonviolence in the Christian tradition. The peacemaking and nonviolence community of practice will report back to the 224th Convention next year.
  5. Resolution for General Convention endorsing a Feast Day on May 17 for Saints Andronicus and Junia, Apostles
    Resolved
    , that the 223rd Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts submit to General Convention to add to the calendar of Lesser Feasts and Fasts on a trial use basis the Feast Day on May 17 for Saints Andronicus and Junia, Apostles, mentioned in Romans 16:7 and venerated for 1400 years in Eastern Orthodoxy and for over three decades in Anglican Churches in the U.S.A. and Canada.
  6. Resolution for continued trial use in the Diocese of Massachusetts of Feast Day on May 17 for Saints Andronicus and Junia, Apostles
    Resolved
    , that the 223rd Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts approve continued trial use in the Diocese of Massachusetts of the Feast Day on May 17 for Saints Andronicus and Junia, Apostles, as approved initially by the 221st Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts, until such feast day is approved by the General Convention or until 2013, whichever occurs sooner, and be it further
    Resolved, that the 223rd Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts charge the Liturgy and Music Committee: 1) to prepare and distribute educational and liturgical material for optional trial use through 2013 as needed, except that any proper that may be authorized by General Convention will supersede any diocesan proper; 2) to promote the observance of this feast day especially in communications with appropriate General Convention bodies as needed; and 3) to report each year to Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts on their activities and on the progress of the proposal.
  7. Resolution confirming the support of the Diocese of Massachusetts for the work of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem
    Resolved
    , that the Bishops, Clergy, and Parishioners of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts reaffirm the commitment of our Diocese to the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem and pledge our support through prayer and participation; and be it further
    Resolved, that the Diocese of Massachusetts identifies the Home for Elderly in Beir Zeit as the focus of attention for the next year and encourages financial support for this institution to be dispensed at the discretion of the Bishop of Jerusalem; and be it further
    Resolved, that the Committee on Palestine and Israel is requested by and authorized on behalf of the Diocese to develop an overall plan for education in our diocese regarding the future of the Diocese of Jerusalem, specifically within Israel, the West Bank and Gaza, and to begin implementing this plan with a report on activities and outcomes to be made at the 2009 Diocesan Convention; and be it further
    Resolved, that the Committee on Palestine and Israel will continue its dialogue with Jewish religious leaders and initiate dialogue with Muslim religious leaders in eastern Massachusetts to arrive at a shared statement of principles on the future of Israel and Palestine.
     

ADMISSION OF PARISHES AND MISSIONS:

Voted by the 223rd Annual Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts, Nov. 7-8, 2008, Hyannis:

That the Church of the Holy Spirit in the City of Fall River be admitted as a parish in union with the Diocese.

Explanation:
The Church of the Holy Spirit is a new entity resulting from the merger of three Fall River parishes:  the Church of the Ascension, St. John’s-St. Stephen’s Partnership and St. Mark’s Church.

CONSTITUTION AND CANONS:


Amendments as Voted by the 223rd Annual Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts, Nov. 7-8, 2008, Hyannis

I.  Amendment to Diocesan Convention Article 18 to clarify amendment process
This Constitution may be amended only as follows:  any proposed amendment, except those proposed by the Committee on Constitution and Canons, shall be sent to the Secretary of the Corporation at least eight weeks before the annual session of the Convention and he or she shall refer it at once to the Committee on Constitution and Canons.  The Committee shall report its recommendations thereon, and any amendments recommended by it, to the Secretary of the Diocese at least four weeks before such session and she or he shall include such report with the reports of the other committees which are sent to the delegates to the Convention.  Each such proposed amendment shall then be placed before such session of the Convention and if, in its original form or after revision, it is adopted by a majority vote of each Order, voting separately, it shall be placed before a subsequent session of the Convention; and if then, in the form previously adopted, it is again adopted by a majority vote of each Order, voting separately, it shall become effective at the adjournment of the current Diocesan Convention unless otherwise directed by Convention.

Explanation:
This is the required second reading of this amendment; it now goes into effect.

II.  Amendment to Diocesan Constitution Article 2, Section 2 to allow lay members of Diocesan Council Vote at Diocesan Convention
The Bishops shall each have a seat and vote in the Convention.  Subject to Section 4 of this Article, every cleric who is canonically resident in the Diocese and lay members of the Diocesan Council shall be entitled to a seat and vote in Convention.  Officers of the Corporation, other Members of the Diocesan Council, Diocesan Youth Council and the Standing Committee, and Presiding Officers of Diocesan Commissions and Committees shall be entitled to all privileges of membership in the Convention, except the right to vote; provided that members of the Diocesan Youth Council of age 16 or older shall have the right to vote.

Explanation:
This is the required second reading of this amendment; it now goes into effect.

Resolutions on Clergy Compensation and Benefits:

Voted by the 223rd Annual Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts,
Nov. 7-8, 2008, Hyannis

Resolved, That the diocesan Total Clergy Compensation (TCC) be defined as the total of cash stipend, utilities allowance, housing, SECA (Self Employment Contribution Act) allowance, if any, and all other cash compensation paid to an individual clergyperson.  TCC does not include benefits (e.g. pension, health or dental insurance, etc.) or reimbursements for job-related expenses as described in the 2009 Guidelines. 

Resolved, That the TCC Standard be defined as the minimum TCC for active full-time parochial clergy and, for the calendar year 2009, is determined by the following formula:

TCC Standard = $56,620 + (116.4 x Points) + $500 x [years of service within the congregation]

Provided that the minimum TCC Standard for full-time parochial clergy is $60,110. 

Points are determined as the sum of three factors, calculated from data taken from the most recent Parochial Report:

Total Current Operating Revenues (000s)  x .30
 + Number of Current Adult Pledging Units  x .40
 + Average Current Sunday-Attendance   x .30
 = Total Points

The TCC applicable to a full-time rector, vicar, priest-in-charge or interim shall not be less than 100% of the TCC Standard for the congregation.

The TCC applicable to a full-time curate shall not be less than:

TCC Standard (curate) = [$56,620 + (116.4 x Points)] x 0.65

The TCC applicable to a full-time assistant rector shall not be less than:

TCC Standard (assistant) = [$56,620 + (116.4 x Points)] x 0.70
+ $350 x [years of service within the congregation]

The TCC applicable to a full-time associate rector shall not be less than:

TCC Standard (associate) = [$56,620 + (116.4 x Points)] x 0.75
+ $375 x [years of service within the congregation]

Provided that in each case no more than ten years of service will be considered in this calculation.