Special Agendas

Synod members indicate their support for a motion

The General Synod is the national assembly of the Church of England. The General Synod considers and approves legislation affecting the whole of the Church of England, formulates new forms of worship, debates matters of national and international importance, and approves the annual budget for the work of the Church at national level.

Matters to be debated by the whole of General Synod form part of the Special Agenda and will fall under one of the categories listed below.

Legislative Business (Special Agenda I)

The General Synod is a legislative assembly and its Measures have the same force and effect as an Act of Parliament. A new Measure or Canon usually comes about after a motion is passed by the General Synod asking for legislation to be introduced.

There are various stages to the process by which a Measure or Canon becomes law. Learn more about the Synodical legislative process.

Liturgical Business (Special Agenda II)

Liturgy describes the form of worship in a service, including formal written prayers, readings, and other calls and responses which make up the bulk of a traditional Anglican service. Liturgical and theological/doctrinal matters are first discussed in the House of Bishops (who meet several times a year) before the debate is opened up for wider discussion in General Synod.

There is currently no Liturgical Business on the General Synod's Agenda.

Private Members’ Motions (Special Agenda III)

Private Members’ Motions (PMMs) are sponsored by an individual member of Synod and brings to the attention of the General Synod, a matter that the Synod member is passionate about.

A minimum of 100 expressions of interest in support for the motion is required for the Business Committee to consider scheduling the motion for debate. Whether your PMM appears on the upcoming General Synod's Agenda is dependent on the popularity of other PMMs also vying for inclusion. All undebated PMMs lapse at the end of the quinquennium.

You can view and indicate your support for any of the current Private Members’ Motions under consideration for debate.

Diocesan Synod Motions (Special Agenda IV)

Diocesan Synod Motions (DSMs) are motions passed by diocesan synods that have been referred to the General Synod. Once a DSM has been referred to the General Synod, it will remain on the Agenda until it is either debated or withdrawn by the proposing diocese – i.e. the motion can be carried over from one quinquennium to the next.

You can view the current list of Diocesan Synod Motions under consideration for debate.