Petition 81398

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Complaint Process (81398-JA-¶2704.1a)

Amend ¶2704.1a as follows:  
   ¶ 2704. Referral of Original Complaint to Counsel for the Church, Who Shall Prepare Judicial Complaint and Supporting Material for Consideration by Committee on Investigation
   
1. When respondent is a bishop
       a) Judicial Complaint
  If a complaint is based on allegations of one or more offenses listed in ¶ 2702, A complaint based on allegations that a bishop has committed one or more of the offenses listed in ¶ 2702 shall initially be served on the president and secretary of the College of Bishops. (or the two members of the College who are handling the complaint) may refer the complaint to a bishop from another jurisdictional or central conference, or Upon receipt of the complaint the president of the College of Bishops shall forthwith deliver a copy of the complaint to the respondent bishop, notify active bishops of the existence and nature of the complaint, and refer the complaint to an elder in full connection designated by the Board of Ordained Ministry within the same jurisdictional annual or central conference, who shall serve as counsel for the Church. Counsel for the Church shall represent the interests of the Church in pressing claims of the person making the complaint. Counsel for the Church shall have the right to choose one assistant counsel without  with voice who may be an attorney. ...

Rationale

A colleague bishop should not be permitted to serve as counsel for the Church for to so allow creates the appearance of a serious conflict of interest in pursuing and prosecuting valid claims that offenses listed in ¶ 2702 may have been committed. Naming a designated  elder from the annual...