General Synod is one of the four assemblies of the Sutlej Reformed Church of Pakistan.
Synod is primarily made up of elders and ministers, sent from classes and regions as voting delegates. It also includes corresponding delegates, who can speak to issues on the floor but can’t vote, make motions, or hold office, who represent boards, commissions, and others within the SRC.
General Synod functions through the General Synod Council, commissions, and agencies of the SRC.
The key responsibilities of General Synod are to set the direction and tone for denominational ministry and determine denominational policy.
General Synod determines denominational policy and has general oversight for the interests and concerns of the whole church.
General Synod’s agenda includes reports and recommendations from several entities including synod’s commissions, the General Synod Council, and the SRC’s agencies among others. It also includes overtures, or letters, from classes or regional synods asking the synod to take a particular action. The General Synod president (moderator) and the SRC’s general secretary also have the opportunity to bring proposals in their reports.
Following the example of the early church, the SRC believes that decisions should be made by gathering people together to discern the will of God. At General Synod, delegates don’t just hear reports and vote on recommendations; they discern the mind of Christ together.
Synod operates through advisory committees and through plenary sessions, where recommendations are deliberated and voted on. General Synod can refer business to advisory committees during the synod meeting, or to committees, commissions, task forces, or the General Synod Council for the report back at a future date.
The General Synod Council is the executive committee of the SRC’s General Synod. The GSC carries out the work of General Synod between synod meetings. It focuses on enabling the SRC’s participation in God’s work in the world and equipping congregations and assemblies for mission and ministry. Half of the members of GSC are elders; the other half are ministers of Word and sacrament.
Commissions are standing committees of the General Synod established to advise the General Synod body in particular areas of the life of the church. Commissions report to the General Synod. Each year, they provide a written report on their activities along with any recommendations for action they wish General Synod to consider. Commissions also receive assignments from the General Synod by means of recommendations approved by General Synod that are assigned to them for action.