The Governing Body is responsible for decisions that affect the Church’s Faith, Order and Worship. It also has powers to make regulations “for the general management and good government of the Church, and the property and affairs thereof.” (from Chapter 11 Section 33 of the Constitution of the Church in Wales).
The Governing Body is the supreme legislature of the Church in Wales, broadly speaking the Parliament of the Church in Wales.
Any cleric who holds or has held –
- a dignity;
- a cathedral preferment;
- a benefice or other office within the Church in Wales;
- a licence from a Welsh Diocesan Bishop.
Every lay communicant over 18 and under 75 years of age who –
- either resides or has resided for a period of 12 months in a Church in Wales parish;
- or whose name appears on the electoral roll of any parish in Wales;
- does not belong to a religious body not in communion with the Church in Wales.
Clergy or laity who are in the full-time salaried employment of the Representative Body, Diocesan Boards of Finance or any other provincial or diocesan body within the Church in Wales or who have been so for the preceding 12 months are not eligible for membership of the Governing Body or any committee or sub-committee thereof.
Members serve for a three year period of election or co-option initially.
The Governing Body must meet once a year; in practice, it usually meets twice. Meetings generally last just over 24 hours, from lunchtime on Day 1 to the afternoon of Day 2. The meetings have been held in Lampeter and Llandudno in recent years. If a member is elected to the Standing Committee, it meets three times a year in Cardiff and Shrewsbury, and its Sub-committees meet up to three times a year, in Cardiff or when members are already gathered.
Governing Body business covers a very wide agenda ranging from the governance of the Church, liturgy & doctrine, to issues of social concern. As such the Governing Body needs members with a wide range of interests. In order for the Governing Body to represent the views of the Church as a whole it is important that members can reflect views of their local churches as well as reporting back to them on the work of the Governing Body.
Accommodation and meals are provided at meetings and reasonable travel costs are reimbursed.