The task of the governing the Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana is described in the Constitution and Canons. The governing bodies are:
The Bishop, elected by convention, is the ecclesiastical authority of the Diocese of Louisiana and its chief pastor. The Bishop is charged with convening and presiding over the annual convention and any special conventions, serving as President of the diocesan corporation, and President of the Executive Board.
The Convention, composed of lay delegates and canonically resident and licensed clergy, elects the ordinary and suffragan bishops of the diocese, and the officers of the convention and certain committees and commissions; sets the programs and policies of the diocese; adopts a budget for funding program and administration; sets assessments for funding the budget; and approves the admission of parishes or mission congregations to the diocese.
The Officers are elected by The Convention.
The Bishop serves as President of the Diocese of Louisiana. In case of vacancy or necessary absense of the Bishop, the President of the Standing Committee shall serve as President of the Diocese of Louisiana.
The Secretary serves as Secretary of the Diocese of Louisiana and The Convention. It shall be his duty to give timely notice of all annual and special meetings of The Convention, to prepare the list of lay members of The Convention, to record and publish the proceedings of The Convention, to preserve its journals and records, to attest, as occasion may require, its public proceedings, and faithfully to deliver into the hands of his successor all books and papers in his possession relative to the concerns of The Diocese and of The Convention.
The Treasurer is elected by The Convention. The duty of the Treasurer to receive and disburse the funds of The Diocese in accordance with the annual budget. The Treasurer shall make an annual report to The Convention of all sums received and disbursed during the preceding year and shall include in such report a statement of the condition of the assets of each Parish and Diocesan Mission with regard to its annual financial commitment to The Diocese for the work of the Church.
The Chancellor is appointed by the Bishop and confirmed by the Convention. The Chancellor shall be learned in the law, and shall be the advisor of The Bishop, The Convention, The Executive Board, and The Standing Committee upon all matters touching the interests of The Diocese. He shall be the custodian of all deeds and other conveyances of property to The Diocese, and of such other documents or records as may affect in any way the Title to real property held by or for The Diocese.
A Vice-chancellor shall be learned in the law and shall act for the Chancellor whenever the Chancellor, for any reason, cannot act.
The Standing Committee is elected at large by The Convention and is composed of four clerical and four lay members. It serves as a council of advice to the bishop, and in the case of a vacancy in the office of bishop, the Committee assumes the role of ecclesiastical authority. Other duties include issuing consent to the election of bishops of other dioceses, and to the reunion of dioceses; and the certification of ordination of deacons and priests.
The Executive Board carries out the policies and programs adopted by the annual Diocesan Convention; oversees the financial affairs of the diocese, including clergy and staff compensation standards, contracts, leases, loans, mortgages, property conveyance, and budget preparation; receives reports from various boards, committees, agencies, and offices; and makes long range policy and program recommendations to Diocesan Convention.
The Executive Board is composed of the following:
- Ex officio members with vote: The Bishop, the Bishop Coadjutor if there is one, any Suffragan Bishop, any Assistant Bishop, the President of the Standing Committee, the Secretary of The Diocese, and the Treasurer of The Diocese.
- Elected members with vote: There shall be nine members elected at large by The Convention of The Diocese, three of whom shall be members of the clergy and six of whom shall be members of the laity. They shall serve three year staggered terms.
- Appointed members with vote: The Bishop may appoint not more than two members for a term of office of one year. Those so appointed shall not serve more than three successive appointments.
- Ex officio member without vote: The Headmaster and the Chair of the Board of each Diocesan School.
- Chancellor of the Diocese: The Chancellor of the Diocese shall be an ex-officio member without vote, for the purpose of providing legal counsel.
Governance of The Episcopal Church
The Episcopal Church is governed by the General Convention which is made up of the House of Bishops and the House of Deputies. Learn more about the governance of The Episcopal Church.