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Pastoral Measure 1983

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21 Establishment of group ministries.E

(1)A pastoral scheme may provice for establishing for a group of benefices specified in the scheme a group ministry to which the following provisions shall apply:—

(a)each of the incumbents of the benefices in the group shall have authority to perform in the area of every such benefice all such offices and services as may be performed by the incumbent of that benefice;

(b)the incumbent of any such benefice shall, in performing such offices and services in the area of another benefice, act in accordance with the directions of the incumbent of that other benefice;

(c)it shall be the duty of all the incumbents to assist each other so as to make the best possible provision for the cure of souls throughout the area of the group ministry.[F1Provided that a woman who is the incumbent of a benefice shall not by virtue of paragraph (a) above have authority to preside at or celebrate the Holy Communion or to pronounce the Absolution in a parish to which a resolution under section 3(1) of the Priests (Ordination of Women) Measure 1993 applies]

(2)Where a group ministry is established, the rights and duties aforesaid of each incumbent shall attach to his office, and accordingly, so long as the group ministry continues and the benefice is included therein, the incumbent shall not be entitled to resign or withdraw from those rights and duties, except by resigning the benefice, and on a vacancy the new incumbent shall be admitted to the benefice as an office in the group ministry, with the rights and subject to the duties thereof.

(3)A pastoral scheme establishing a group ministry may designate the first person (who may be the existing incumbent) to hold any benefice as a benefice in the group, but subject as aforesaid the incumbent of any such benefice shall be presented or collated to the benefice by the patron thereof, with the approval of the bishop (in the case of presentation) given in accordance with paragraph 3 of Schedule 3.

(4)The incumbents in a group ministry shall meet as a chapter for the purpose of discussing and reaching a common mind on all matters of general concern or special interest to the group ministry; and a pastoral scheme may provide for the chairmanship of the chapter and, in default of such provision, the members shall elect a chairman, normally for a term of three years; and the chairman shall convene meetings of the chapter at regular intervals and shall preside when present, and in his absence a deputy chairman appointed by the meeting shall preside.

(5)Paragraph 4(4) of Schedule 3 shall apply for the establishment of group councils and for conferring certain powers on such a council.

(6)A pastoral scheme may include in a group ministry a benefice for which a team ministry is established, and in that case the foregoing provisions of this section shall apply to all the vicars in the team ministry, as well as to the rector, in like manner as they apply to the incumbents of the other benefices in the group, except that directions to those incumbents in respect of their ministry in the area of the benefice for which the team ministry is established shall only be given by the rector.

(7)In this section, except subsections (2) and (3), “incumbent” includes a priest in charge.

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