Petition 80498

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Define Written Question of Law (80498-SU-¶51-C)

Amend ¶51. Article VII as follows: “A bishop presiding over an annual, central, or jurisdictional conference shall decide all questions of law coming before the bishop in the regular business of a session, including but not limited to questions related to the business of the session; provided that such questions . . . .”
  
Amend ¶2609.6 as follows: “The Judicial Council shall pass upon and affirm, modify, or reverse the decisions of law made by bishops in central, district, annual, or jurisdictional conferences upon questions of law submitted to them in writing in the regular business of a session, including but not limited to questions related to the business of the session.  In order to facilitate such review, each bishop shall report annually . . . .”

Rationale

This remedies the narrow construal of the Judicial Council on a bishop’s jurisdiction in receiving and deciding written questions of law and restores to the office of the bishop the historic responsibility of appellate review on adverse, non-judicial church matters claimed as an abridgement of the church’s disciplinary rights.