The day began with the orange ball of fire rising in the east… as we can only pray that it will continue you to do as the world continues to evolve and change. Regrettably, I continue to have more faith in the sun rising and moon setting than I do that the changes we have spent so much time on will achieve their desired result.
The 42 General Council in the omnibus motion that was adopted to set us on this journey of restructuring also included these two directives that I’ve heard very little about.
GC42 CR 12 RELATIONSHIP OF STAFF
The 42nd General Council direct the General Secretary, General Council to clarify and report to the Executive of the General Council on:
- the relationship of the Regional Secretaries and the General Secretary; and
- the relationships and accountability of regional staff.
GC42 CR 13 EVALUATION
That the 42nd General Council direct that the Executive of the General Council define “objectives and ends” for the governance changes adopted and determine measurements for evaluation to be done in time for the 43rd General Council.
Perhaps if I dug through the minutes of
the General Council Executive I’d find the work but it seems to me that as the above was included in the same motion as the remits set us on this course that they should have, especially the second one, have received a level of attention at this General Council.
It was a full day. Business was interspersed with ballots being cast for the next Moderator and after four ballots the Council had discerned that the Rev. Richard Bott would be the one who would serve in that capacity for the next three years.
The rest of the afternoon, aside from eating was spent in discussion groups and I am pleased to say that our discussion group finished our work at 5:45, having discussed all of the proposals. Our notes, together with the notes from all the other discussion groups went to the Facilitation Team who then ‘suggest a way forward’.
During Decision Sessions the process is this:
- The Moderator calls a representative of the Facilitation Team forward who then shares a digest of the Facilitation Teams work: what they heard, the issues at stake, and a motion that is a ‘suggested way forward’.
- The Moderator then asks, ‘has the Facilitation Team captured the work of the Discussion Groups?’ and we vote yes or no. If yes (we’ve not had a no vote at this stage yet).
- The Moderator then asks, ‘are you read to move to a vote? and we vote yes or no. If yes (we’ve not had a no vote at this stage yet).
- The Moderator then asks for a mover and a seconder to the motion as crafted by the Facilitation Team. Once moved and seconded the motion is then open to amendments.
- Eventually the Moderator will call for the questions and we will vote on the motion that serves to take the action requested (or not) as contained within the proposal.
It has worked – though there are still some who do not feel that they’ve been heard until they have a chance to speak in plenary – and when 90% say they are ready to move to a vote I have been surprised by how many still want to speak… alas, it is a democratic process and its working.
With the work of my discussion group done and my belly full I took Rasta for a much needed walk and some down time. At 7PM we returned to the plenary session for a worship service led by the youth that called us to reflect on the journey since the apology. It was a moving service that included prayers to the four directions and braiding streamers of the four colours of the medicine wheel symbolizing our strength in walking and working together.