Committee for Legal Affairs 2014 Annual Report

Summary Report to Assembly IV – September 2013 to August 2014

Objectives of the Committee Per Terms of Reference

“The Committee for Legal Affairs is to i) determine and resolve all legal issues related to the Assembly; ii) determine any legal issues related to the activity of the agencies of which the Assembly has oversight, and address those issues; iii) formulate a common approach to the legal issues facing all the jurisdictions; iv) study and develop Best Practices related to specific circumstances; and v) resolve any questions addressed to them by the other committees.”

Committee Members and Consultants

Members: Bishop Daniel (Chairman), Bishop Andonios

Attorney Consultants: Fr. Greg Rubis; Bob Koory; Judge Ray Lanier; Ken Liu; Leon Lysaght; Sophia Mafrige; Bill Marianes; Louis Milicich; Jim Spencer; Ted Theophilos, Catherine Bouffides Walsh, and Thaddeus Wojcik

Secretariat Facilitator/Liaison: Eric Namee

Committee Meetings Since Last Assembly Meeting

The Committee consultants met only once by conference call. Committee sub-groups assigned to various tasks also met several times.

Committee Activities and Accomplishments Since Last Assembly Meeting

Continued to gather and study information on jurisdictional organizational legal documents.
Obtained Assembly liability insurance.
Filed trademark applications.

Special Discussion Issues for the September 2014 Assembly

The Committee was not asked by any other Assembly committee to assist them with legal issues. The Committee stands ready to assist the Assembly on an as needed basis. Much of its preparatory work related to a united Orthodox Church in the United States is on hold until the Assembly informs the Committee to proceed. The Committee has established the following four task forces that are ready to commence work when the Assembly is ready:

Major Institutions Information. Receive and analyze all legal documentation and information regarding the various kinds of other major institutional entities that exist in each jurisdiction. (e.g. monasteries, seminaries, colleges, schools, auxiliaries, brotherhoods, guilds, etc.)

Legal Policies and Procedures Information. Receive and analyze all legal policies, procedures, manuals, handbooks and related documentation from each jurisdiction and its major operational units.

Jurisdiction/Parish Information. Receive and analyze all constitutions, bylaws, regulations and other organizational, operational and governing documents of each jurisdiction, including how their various units and parishes are organized.

Combined Youth Activity Legal Support. This subcommittee will be available to address requests from the Assembly Youth Task Force, as and if they arise, in connection with the possible joint youth gathering. If there are specific legal tasks the Assembly would like the Committee to engage in, please let us know.

Closing Comments
In conclusion, I would like to take this opportunity to offer sincerest gratitude to the entire membership of the Committee, and in particular to the Secretariat’s Facilitator/Liaison - Eric Namee for his guidance and vision as the work and ministry of the Assembly progresses.

In Christ,
Bishop Daniel, Chairman