GS 2019 art 144

GS 2019 Article 144 – Appeal of Tintern Spring Creek re: GS 2016 Art. 103 (Confidentiality)

1. Material

  • 1.1    Appeal to GS 2019 from church of Tintern Spring Creek re: the confidentiality of GS 2016 Art. 103 (

2. Admissibility

  • 2.1    Since the matter concerns an appeal of a decision of GS 2016 it is admissible.

3. Observations

  • 3.1    GS 2016 declared Article 103 of the Acts “confidential” and hence did not make it available to all church members but only to consistories. No grounds were provided.
  • 3.2    The Tintern Spring Creek CanRC appeals this decision on the following grounds:
    • 3.2.1    GS 2016 did not provide grounds for declaring this Act confidential;
    • 3.2.2    Past synods have regularly published similar or sensitive decisions;
    • 3.2.3    Though the matter involved a discipline case, the behavior or beliefs triggering the discipline were in the public domain. Keeping Synod’s judgments confidential on that behavior and/or beliefs does not assist elders in guiding the thinking and/or behavior of church members;
    • 3.2.4    Publicly promulgated errors should be met with publicly pronounced judgments.

4. Considerations

  • 4.1    When General Synod makes decisions on matters involving sensitive personal information that has never been made public and which, in view of the 9th commandment, ought not to be made public, these decisions are to be put into the confidential acts.

5. Recommendation

Synod decide:

  • 5.1    To deny the appeal and thus the request to as yet publish GS 2016 Art. 103 as an appendix to the Acts of GS 2019.