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Diocesan Synod Elections 2021

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Elections to our Diocesan Synod take place every three years. This is where each deanery in the diocese elects its clergy and lay representatives to represent them on a diocesan level for a term of three years.

What does a Diocesan Synod member do?

Diocesan Synod members get involved in making strategic decisions which affect the diocese, for example, diocesan strategies are put to the Diocesan Synod for approval prior to implementation. The Synod considers and approves standard items such as the annual budget of the diocese. The Synod also considers matters brought by the Deanery Synods and referred to it by the national General Synod. Members can also bring matters of concern for consideration through Private Members Motions. Diocesan Synod members are expected to consider taking part in other bodies within the governance structures of the diocese. Diocesan Synod members are also members of the Diocesan Board of Finance (except where they are disqualified due to a conflict of interest) meaning they receive the annual report and accounts of the Norwich Diocesan Board of Finance on an annual basis. More information on the Diocesan Synod can be found on the Synod webpage.

How are the elections carried out?

The elections are held within each deanery. The electorate are the respective Houses of Clergy and Laity of each deanery (except for co-opted members). The Rural Dean (or an appointed substitute) is the Presiding Officer for the House of Laity and the Deanery Lay Chair (or an appointed substitute) is the Presiding Officer for the House of Clergy.

Who is eligible to stand as a candidate in these elections?

To stand for election as a representative of the clergy you must be a member of the House of Clergy of the Deanery Synod.

To stand for election as a representative of the laity you must be an actual communicant aged 16 or over and be:

  • on the electoral roll of a parish in the deanery,
  • declared by the leader of a mission initiative in the deanery to be part of the worshipping community involved in the initiative.

Candidates will also need to complete the new Data Protection Forms if they haven’t already done so for an existing role within the church.  This can be done online or printing a hardcopy from the Parish Persons Dashboard.

What is the timetable for the elections?

These shall take place in the period 1 June to 15 July 2021 inclusive, to be completed by the latter date.

Other dates are to be agreed by the Rural Dean for each deanery. Below is the schedule being used by the Diocese of London which may help to use as a guide if you have not already decided a timetable.

  • Wednesday 2 June – Issue of Notice of Election and Nomination Forms
  • Thursday 24 June – Return of Nomination Forms
  • Monday 28 June – Issue of Voting Papers
  • Tuesday 13 July – Return of Voting Papers
  • Wednesday 14 July – Counts

Who should I contact if I am considering standing for election?

If you are a member of a Deanery Synod, a nomination form will be sent to you.

If you are not a member of the Deanery Synod, then contact your Rural Dean (if you are a lay person).

More information about Diocesan Synod, including the forms required for elections, can be found on this page. You can also contact Ben Tooke for hardcopies.


Bishop Graham and a few members of both Diocesan and General Synod came together to highlight some key information about Synod in this fun spoof, which you can watch below: