Tips and reminders offered as Synod resolution deadlines draw near

Anyone submitting a resolution to be considered by the United Church of Christ’s 2023 General Synod should be pretty far along in the process outlined last spring.

But for those catching up — and for those who just want to double-check as deadlines approach — a tip sheet and a video are now available.

The video, shown below — and a PDF document containing similar information in writing — will soon to be available at the Synod website. They cover the essentials people need to know, said adjunct national staff member Kevin Peterson. He and David Anderson, both UCC members from the Seattle area, staff the Synod’s resolution and committee process.

Their pre-Synod job is to make sure proposed resolutions meet guidelines for format and content. To work on those details, they assign the drafts to review teams.

Deadlines, set by the Standing Rules of the 34th General Synod, are approaching fast:

  • By Oct. 31, the texts of proposed resolutions and other formal motions must be submitted to Peterson for assignment to a review team. These texts don’t have to “be final” yet. “Submitters are encouraged to provide resolutions in draft form to the Resolution Review Team as early as possible,” the rules say.
  • By Jan. 2, 2023 — after the review described above — texts must be submitted to Peterson in final form. The Office of the General Minister and President will in turn distribute these to Synod delegates by April 3. The UCC Board, acting as the Synod’s business committee, will recommend the “disposition” of each motion and report these to the General Synod.
General Synod committee process facilitator Kevin Peterson hosts this 7-minute video.

The standing rules also detail types of resolutions and motions, who may submit them, how to ask for a rare late-business exception, and much more.

A dozen in progress

About a dozen potential resolutions are known to be in progress, Peterson said. “Six have been submitted and another six to seven are to be submitted soon.”

He said the process is similar to the one used for 2021, which “worked very well.”

The October deadline allows reviewers to “check for polity and look-back concerns — making sure the topic has not been addressed by the previous two Synods — and to provide helpful edits and suggested revisions to submitters.”

A new rule

Peterson lays out key guidelines in the video about submitting resolutions to the 2023 General Synod.

One new rule for this Synod is that anyone, except a group of individual delegates, who submits a resolution “must submit a copy of the minutes of the meeting at which the resolution was adopted,” Peterson said. He said this is “to ensure the resolution was passed by the entire sending body instead of that body’s governing board. For example, a resolution from a Conference needs to be passed by a Conference annual meeting and not just the conference board of directors.”

In the video, Peterson advised anyone involved in submitting a resolution — even though it’s getting late — to “read the standing rules carefully and be in early and frequent communication with us through the entire process.” People can reach Peterson at and Anderson

The requirements and procedures “may sound convoluted,” he said. “But it’s all spelled out in the standing rules and we are here to help you and guide you through the process.”

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Categories: United Church of Christ News

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