Commission of Assembly
The Commission of Assembly is formed from around one-tenth of the Commissioners who attended a General Assembly. During the following year it can take decisions in place of the General Assembly in certain situations.
A Commission of Assembly was called for Wednesday 23 March to consider a proposal for some Commissioners to participate online rather than in person at the 2022 Genera Assembly. The Commissioners voted to once again hold a hybrid General Assembly, with some attending Assembly Hall and others participating online.
Documents related to the March Commission of Assembly as well as details and decisions of the meetings of previous Commissions of Assembly can be found below. You can also watch the full video of the proceedings.
- Notice Of Motion
- Report Of The Assembly Business Committee
- Report Of The Legal Questions Committee
- Standing Orders For The 2022 General Assembly
The Commission of the General Assembly convened remotely at 4pm on Tuesday 7 July to consider a report and deliverance from the Legal Questions Committee.
The Commission of Assembly, appointed by the General Assembly of 2019, is formed from around one-tenth of that body’s commissioners. In special circumstances the commission is empowered to take decisions in place of the General Assembly.
Due to the COVID-19 health crisis the 2020 General Assembly had to be postponed, so alternatives have been put in place to deal with important and time-sensitive matters. A special service was held in May to install the 2020-21 Moderator, Rt Rev Dr Martin Fair.
The current Commission of Assembly met in November 2019 and was again consulted in April/May 2020. A short General Assembly for 2020 was held on 2-3 October to deal with urgent business.
The Commission of Assembly meeting in July considered temporary measures to alleviate blockages to filling vacancies and conducting the business of the Church during the current COVID-19 crisis. The deliverance was approved and you can read the Minute of the Commission of Assembly here.
The membership of the current Commission will continue in their appointments until another General Assembly is held and a new Commission is appointed.
A small number of key personnel will attend the Commission of Assembly in person at the Assembly Hall in Edinburgh. The event will be livestreamed on the Church website.
Read the full Legal Questions report and deliverance
You can download the full Legal Questions report and deliverance as a PDF file.
Proposed items of business
- Elect the Rev Dr Martin Fair (Arbroath: St Andrew’s) as Moderator of the General Assembly 2020-2021
- Pass Acts uniting (1) the Presbyteries of Dunfermline, Kirkcaldy, and St Andrews to form the Presbytery of Fife, (2) the Presbyteries of Aberdeen and Shetland to form the Presbytery of Aberdeen and Shetland, and (3) the Presbyteries of Dumbarton and Greenock & Paisley to form the Presbytery of Clyde
- Agree that membership of the Social Care Council will with effect from 1 June 2020 be reduced to 12 in accordance with a revised nomination process
- Make certain appointments to Standing Committees as proposed by the Nomination Committee, and to Trusts as requested by these Trusts
- Agree that the Ecumenical Relations Committee shall act on behalf of the General Assembly in the dissolution of Local Ecumenical Partnerships
- Amend the process for appointing the Committee to Nominate the Moderator and ask the Nomination Committee to populate that Committee, so that it can select a Moderator for 2021-2022
- Amend the Income Protection and Ill-Health Act (Act VI 2019) to reflect Income Protection provision commencing at 78 weeks rather than 52
Read the full report
Minute of the Commission
- Read the Assembly Trustees chairman Very Rev John Chalmers' speech to the Commission
- View the deliverances to the Commission of Assembly 21 November 2019
- Read more about the criteria for nomination to the two new agencies of the Church of Scotland
Serving our local congregations
During this first phase of changes, the Assembly Trustees have been under instruction by the General Assembly to bring forward proposals to merge the current four councils (Ministries, Mission and Discipleship, World Mission, and Church and Society) into two new agencies.
John Chalmers, Convener of the Assembly Trustees, said:
The Assembly Trustees’ proposals
- Approve the merger of the Ministries Council with the Mission and Discipleship Council under the working title of ‘Faith Nurture Forum’ to take effect from 1 January 2020
- Approve the merger of the Church and Society Council and the World Mission Council under the working title of ‘Faith Impact Forum’ to take effect from 1 January 2020
- Instruct the Assembly Trustees to work with the two new agencies to propose to the 2020 General Assembly detailed remits setting out: which parts of their existing work will be carried out by the two new agencies, which parts are no longer necessary to be carried out, and which parts should be carried out by presbyteries instead
- Instruct the Assembly Trustees to work with the two new agencies to propose to the 2020 General Assembly how the work of each Forum is to be prioritised from June 2020
- Approve that Ecumenical Relations and the Theological Forum sit within the management and departmental structure of the 'Faith Nurture Forum'
- Approve that Interfaith work sits within the management, departmental structure and policy framework of the 'Faith Impact Forum'
- Approve the remit of the Audit Committee, as set out within the report's Appendix II