Thinking Anglicans

Church Representation Rules

The 2020 edition of the Church Representation Rules is now available online. As we noted earlier this 2020 edition presents an entirely new text of the Church Representation Rules, replacing the previous Rules established in 1969 and amended numerous times over the following fifty years. They come into effect on 1 January 2020 so, for example, they will apply to the 2020 annual parochial church meeting and to the revision of the electoral roll which must precede that annual meeting.

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Stanley Monkhouse
6 months ago

When I click for the Kindle edition, this advert pops up: “Kundalini Exposed: Disclosing the Cosmic Mystery of Kundalini. The Ultimate Guide to Kundalini Yoga, Kundalini Awakening, Rising, and Reposing on its Hidden Throne (Real Yoga Book 3).” Rather bears out Linda Woodhead’s thesis ….

Simon Cowling
Simon Cowling
6 months ago

This may seem a trivial point, but I am interested to note how the new CRRs (and especially the Introduction) follow the more general trend in current Church of England discourse in speaking of the ‘parish’ as though it were coterminous with the regular worshipping community of the parish church (for example, from the Introduction, ’(t)his (ie an amendment to the model rules) will make it possible for a parish to make governance arrangements that are best suited to the mission and life of the Church in that parish.’. In fact it would not be the parish making the new… Read more »

Susannah Clark
Susannah Clark
6 months ago
Reply to  Simon Cowling

Thank you Simon. This is actually a very important point, beyond the issue of the CRRs. The Church does not exist for its own membership group alone. It is not an insiders organisation. It exists to live alongside the parish beyond the walls of a local church, serving it, sharing life with it, and its needs, and frailty, and diversity, and sickness, loss and joys. The Church of England is not just a Protestant sect. It is a conduit for the love and grace of God in the whole community, and indeed God may often be found in that wider… Read more »

Perry Butler
Perry Butler
6 months ago
Reply to  Simon Cowling

Its interesting Simon that the word “parson” the term most used of a clergyman by my grandparents generation has completely fallen out of use.
Many current clergypersons arent too sure whether they minister in the Church of England or the Anglican denomination in England.

Rowland Wateridge
Rowland Wateridge
6 months ago

As noted on the previous 25th November thread, the new Church Representation Rules 2020 form Schedule 1 of the Church Representation and Ministers Measure 2019 and they are available to view free online at legislation.gov.uk. The link to this was provided on the previous thread. (However potential users might not wish to dispense with the explanatory notes which only come with the C of E and Amazon published versions.)

T Pott
T Pott
6 months ago

I am baffled by rule 1(5) on who qualifies for lay membership of electoral rolls. Rule 1(2) says a person must be baptised, be of age, and make one of the three declarations in (3), (4) and (5). (3) is a declaration one is a member of the C of E and a parishioner OR a member of a curch in communion with the C of E and a parishioner, 4) is a mamber of the C of E, a worshipper and a non-parishioner, OR a member of a church in communion with the C of E, a worshipper and… Read more »

Rowland Wateridge
Rowland Wateridge
6 months ago
Reply to  T Pott

I thought long and hard about this, considered that I had cracked it, and drafted a long reply. But, on reflection, I have to agree. The full wording is: (5) The third declaration is a declaration that the person— (a) is a member in good standing of a Church which is not in communion with the Church of England but subscribes to the doctrine of the Holy Trinity, (b) is also a member of the Church of England, and (c) has habitually attended public worship in the parish during the preceding six months. It only seems to have relevance if… Read more »

David Lamming
David Lamming
6 months ago

Re CRR rule 1(5), Gabrielle Higgins (Chichester Diocesan Registrar), in her submission to the Revision Committee for (what at the time was) the Draft Church Representation, Ecumenical Relations and Ministers Measure, asked the very question posed by Mr Pott, namely what the provisions of rule 1(5) added to those of rules 1(3) and 1(4). The answer provided by the legal team at Church House who advised the committee was: “Rule 1(5) enables those who are members of churches not in communion with the Church of England (e.g. the Methodist Church of Great Britain) – but who nevertheless are prepared to… Read more »

David Lamming
David Lamming
6 months ago

‘Membership’ of the Church of England -continued. The revision committee for the new Church Representation Rules were provided with a ‘Legal Note’ that considered the question of ‘Membership in the Church of England.’ Its introductory paragraph stated that the C of E, “largely because of its history and its status as the Established Church, has not developed an overarching, single concept of membership. It has either not needed to, or has not considered it desirable to do so. For many purposes, the status of ‘parishioner’ is of considerably greater importance than that of ‘member'”. The Note went on to point… Read more »

Rowland Wateridge
Rowland Wateridge
6 months ago
Reply to  David Lamming

Thank you for the elucidation. Peter Owen’s post sent me back to the original 1969 rules, and the equivalent provision to rule 1 (5) then was Rule 1 (2) (c): (c) to be a member in good standing of a Church which subscribes to the doctrine of the Holy Trinity (not being a Church in communion with the Church of England) and also prepared to declare himself to be a member of the Church of England having habitually attended public worship in the parish during a period of six months prior to enrolment. I haven’t looked at any intermediate versions,… Read more »

Susannah Clark
Susannah Clark
6 months ago

I think loose and somewhat vaguely defined boundaries of membership may have benefits. To me, the particular calling of the Church of England is to be available as a Church for the whole nation, to the extent that people choose to journey along with it. ‘The parish’ is not the membership of a church, but the community around a church. And the Church should be open and welcoming to anyone who wants to belong, and should seek to live alongside and in the community, rather than be a policed, insider membership group. Dick Lucas gave me a generous hour in… Read more »

Rowland Wateridge
Rowland Wateridge
6 months ago
Reply to  Susannah Clark

My post was ‘civil service’ rather than about the pastoral angle. It seems to me that in its present form the drafting of rule 1 (5) is defective – certainly deficient. The question having been raised with the Revision Committee, it seems all the more surprising that the opportunity wasn’t taken to rectify the drafting in the 2020 Rules.

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