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¶240 Council of Bishops

  1. The bishops of the general and provisional general conferences shall together constitute a Council of Bishops for the purpose of fellowship, mutual counsel and accountability and the extension of the kingdom of God through Free Methodist ministries. The council shall normally meet every four years, with its meetings being near the midpoint of the interim between the meetings of the World Conference.
  2. The Council of Bishops shall elect its own executive composed of a president, vice president, and secretary who shall be responsible for overseeing its activities.
  3. Where a general conference has only one bishop, the executive of the Council of Bishops shall assign another bishop to attend the sittings of that general conference to serve as counsel to the presiding bishop. If the assigned bishop observes irregularities in procedure or policy in the general conference, the assigned bishop shall draw this to the attention of the presiding bishop and note this within a report to the World Conference Executive Committee. The assigned bishop shall also preside over the episcopal election.
  4. If a general conference board of administration receives evidence of violation of ordination vows in reference to a bishop of its general conference, the Executive Committee of the Council of Bishops must be notified immediately. The Executive Committee of the Council of Bishops may appoint a representative to monitor and assist with the hearing process as defined by that general conference’s Book of Discipline.* A ruling that a violation has occurred, and the related discipline, may be appealed to the Executive Committee of the World Conference only on the basis that the process provided in the Book of Discipline* has not been followed. The Executive Committee of the World Conference may remand the ruling to the general conference or rule that the process was appropriately followed, and that ruling is final.