The Standing Committee consists of six clergy and six laypersons, elected for three-year terms by delegates from every congregation in the ECMN gathered in Convention. The general duties of the Standing Committee are to be a Counsel of Advice to the Bishop, and to consider consents for a parish, mission or ECMN entity to acquire, dispose of, or encumber the real property; approve candidates for ordination to the diaconate or priesthood; and consent to the elections of and proposed consecrations of bishops in The Episcopal Church. Also, in the event there is no Bishop the Standing Committee acts as the Ecclesiastical Authority of the Episcopal Church in Minnesota until a Bishop can be elected. The Standing Committee holds monthly meetings, and the dates of upcoming Standing Committee meetings are published on the ECMN website. A portion of the agenda is routinely devoted to considering requests by faith communities and governing bodies of ECMN institutions for the Standing Committee’s advice and consent to various transactions. Special meetings can be arranged in exigent circumstances, but the Standing Committee prefers to keep such meetings to a minimum in view of the frequency of its regular meetings. The Standing Committee has a tradition of conducting its business in face-to-face meetings rather than via conference call or other electronic means.
The President of the Standing Committee may appoint a member of the Standing Committee to review the documents submitted by faith communities or governing bodies asking the Standing Committee to provide its advice and consent. The Standing Committee reviews proposed transactions with care. Faith communities and governing bodies seeking Standing Committee approval for a transaction should bear in mind that sufficient time is needed for a careful review. Although the Standing Committee makes every effort to work with faith communities and governing bodies, the Committee cannot ensure that last minute requests will be accommodated. Faith communities and governing bodies desiring to consummate transactions under a particular schedule should bear in mind the requirement that documents be submitted to the President by the first day of the month in which the Standing Committee is to meet to consider such requests. Documents not received by the first day of such month may not be considered and dealt with by the Standing Committee until the following month.
The Standing Committee welcomes any additional material or background a Faith Community may wish to submit in connection with a request for advice and consent. In particular, faith communities and governing bodies seeking to borrow funds are encouraged to submit descriptions of their proposed sources and timing of repayment.