Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Whom should I speak to regarding my enquiry?
A. If you have a specific legal enquiry relating to your parish or a more general enquiry on a matter of ecclesiastical law on which you require clarification, in the first instance you should contact your diocesan registrar for advice. Contact details for all diocesan registries are available here. If you are interested in the progress of draft legislation through the General Synod, the date of legislation coming into effect or the availability of nationally produced guidelines or codes of practice, please contact the Legal Office.

Q. Where can I obtain a copy of a Measure, Canon or Statutory Instrument?
A. The latest draft of a Measure, Canon or Statutory Instrument under consideration by the General Synod can be purchased from Church House Bookshop. After a Measure has been given Final Approval by the Synod but before it receives the Royal Assent, copies can be obtained from the Legal Office. Once a Measure has received the Royal Assent or a Statutory Instrument has been laid before Parliament, copies can be obtained from the Stationery Office (tel. +44 (0)870 600 5533; email or from the UK Legislation website. Once a Canon has been given Final Approval by the Synod, copies can again be obtained from the Legal Office.

Q. A cleric is coming from overseas to officiate in our parish. What do we need to do?
A. A cleric who was ordained priest or deacon by an overseas bishop needs to have permission to officiate from the Archbishop of the province in which he or she intends to officiate before applying to the diocesan bishop for a diocesan licence or permission to officiate.

An application form for the province of Canterbury is available here which on completion may be returned with the relevant supporting documentation by email to the Legal Office, or by post to: The Joint Provincial Registrar, Legal Office, Church House, Great Smith Street, London SW1P 3AZ.

Applications for the province of York are handled by the York Provincial Registry, to whom enquiries should be directed.

Q. Where can I obtain a copy of the Episcopal Ministry Act of Synod 1993?
A. This Act of Synod is available for download here.

Q. How do we go about obtaining a faculty for work on our church?
A. Information on the faculty jurisdiction and the process for obtaining a faculty, including contact details for all Diocesan Advisory Committees, is provided on the Church Care website. If your church is listed, you should read Making Changes to a Listed Church and The National Amenity Societies: their role in the conservation of Anglican Churches. In all cases, you are encouraged to seek the advice of your Diocesan Advisory Committee at as early a stage as possible.

Q. Where can I find information on maintaining a church electoral roll for a parish and procedures for conducting PCC meetings?
A. You need to read the Church Representation Rules (which are available in print and Kindle e-book form from Church House Publishing) or, if in any doubt, consult your diocesan registrar. The Rules are also available to view on this link.

Q. Where do I apply for a Special Marriage Licence?
A. You should write to The Faculty Office, 1 The Sanctuary, London SW1P 3JT; tel. +44 (0)20 7222 5381; email; website