PASTORAL MINISTRY HANDBOOK | CHAPTER 13

Status of Ministerial
Credentials

Good Standing

Ministers who are living consistently with the expectations and obligations of ministers as described in the Discipline are considered to be in Good Standing. Such ministers are free to perform any of the duties of the ministry enabled by the minster’s level of license.

Under Supervision

1. There are times when a minister holding credentials is dealing with issues which do not require removal from ministry, but where formal supervision may be of great help. In those cases, the Bishop and Director of Ministerial Licensing may at their discretion place the minister Under Supervision.

2. A Supervision Team will provide accountability, guidance and support. The members of the Supervision Team are appointed by and accountable to the Bishop.

3. There is no change in credential or in status while Under Supervision.

4. This designation and its results will remain confidential unless the minister fails to respond positively to the Supervision Team. In that case, the minister’s credentials will be placed in Probation.

5. Ministers Under Supervision are expected to submit an annual minister’s report.

6. Ministers Under Supervision are eligible to serve as a clergy representative to the US National Conference according the rules specified in Discipline.

Inactive Status

1. There are times when a minister holding credentials steps away from active ministry assignment for an indefinite period of time. In those cases, the Bishop and Director of Ministerial Licensing may at their discretion place the minister in Inactive Status. They will report such status to the PMLT.

2. An Inactive minister is exempted from assignment during this status and shall not perform any of the duties of the ministry, except at the Bishop’s discretion.

3. After remaining in this status for two years, the minister shall surrender ministerial credentials to the bishop, through a signed letter, to be held in trust until such time as the minister re-enters active service.

4. Returning to active ministry must be approved by the Bishop, Director of Ministerial Licensing, and the PMLT.

5. Inactive ministers are expected to submit an annual minister’s report.

6. Inactive ministers are not eligible to serve as either clergy or lay representatives to the US National Conference.

Probation

1. Ministers will be assigned Probation status when they are alleged to be living inconsistently with the expectations and obligations of ministers as described in the Discipline, or are under investigation for such.

2. Probation status will be assigned by the bishop in consultation with the PMLT.

3. The Bishop will assign a Restoration Team to meet with the minister and any other parties involved in order to discern the reality and seriousness of the situation.

a. The members of the Restoration Team are accountable to the Bishop.

b. During this period, the minister may perform any of the duties of the ministry at the Bishop’s discretion.

4. The Bishop has the authority to do the following:

a. Act immediately to suspend the credentials of any minister when credible evidence exists that the minister is guilty of living inconsistently with the expectations and obligations of ministers as described in the Discipline.

b. Determine that the minister may continue in ministry under the direction of the Restoration Team, who will facilitate a restoration process as detailed in the Pastoral Ministry Handbook.

5. Ministers under Probation are expected to submit an annual minister’s report.

6. Ministers under Probation are not eligible to serve as either clergy or lay representatives to the US National Conference.

Suspended

1. Ministers who are found to be living inconsistently with the expectations and obligations of ministers as described in the Discipline will be assigned Suspended status by the Bishop in consultation with the PMLT.

2. Suspended ministers shall not perform any of the duties of the ministry.

3. Suspended ministers shall surrender ministerial credentials to the Bishop, through a signed letter, to be held in trust until such time as the full restoration process is completed (as detailed the Pastoral Ministry Handbook).

4. Failure to respond positively to the restoration process will result in the minister’s credentials being revoked at the discretion of the Bishop in consultation with the PMLT.

5. Suspended ministers are expected to submit an annual minister’s report.

6. Suspended ministers are not eligible to serve as either clergy or lay representatives to the US National Conference.

Revoked

1. The Bishop may recommend to the PMLT the revoking of ministerial credentials when:

a. The fact of misconduct is beyond question.

b. The Bishop and Director of Ministerial Licensing determine that a minister under Supervision, Probation, or Suspension cannot be restored to ministerial service.

2. A minister whose license has been revoked may appeal the decision to the ELT.

3. A minister whose license has been revoked must surrender ministerial credentials, through a signed letter, to the Bishop.

4. Such ministers are not eligible to serve as either clergy or lay representatives to the US National Conference.

The entire Pastoral Ministry Handbook can be downloaded as a PDF file.

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