The Free Anglican Mission Society
Canons and Constitutions
Canon 1) Establishment of the Community: We hereby Ordain, Establish, and Govern, that The Free Anglican Mission Society, hereafter abbreviated, FAMS, is an established community of Clergy and Laity, existing under the careful Direction of The Right Reverend Lark Justin Muncy, Independent Anglican Bishop of Kermit, West Virginia and to any Bishop, or clergy appointed by him/her as overseer of this Society.
The Community shall establish an organizational hierarchy to include although not be limited to a: Bishop Moderator, Vice Moderator, Clerk, Treasurer and Lay Advisor. These titles are defined as such:
All clergy, seeking entry into the FAMS or an Affiliate status, and who are charged with the spiritual and corporal care of a congregation/community must submit a Curriculum Vitae, Letter of Introduction to include intention for entering the Community and background check, generated within a month of submitting an application, prior to entering into the Community. Applications will be reviewed and voted on by a committee appointed by the Bishop Moderator. Committee members must be unanimously agreed to grant admittance to the Community.
Since the Bishop Moderator is extending a great privilege and assuming a high level of liability to those they decide to include into the community as members or Affiliates great prudence and diligence must be exercised. All efforts will be enacted to protect and safeguard the integrity and image of the FAMS.
Violations will be treated with the swiftest of action and will result in immediate dismissal and revocation of all rights, responsibilities and associations.
Canon 2) Offices of the FAMS:
a) Overseeing Bishop: The Bishop is given a special place of reverence within the society, while he/she may or may not be a member of the society, He/She is given a special reverence as a provider of the gifts of the Episcopacy, that is to provide, Holy Orders, Confirmation, and special sacramental graces that can only be established through His/Her Hand. He/She does not have to be enrolled in the Society to offer these Graces, as he/she by his/her own calling and Ordination is given authority over the faithful.
b) Provincial: is an appointed Cleric who must be either a Priest or Bishop given the office by the Overseeing Bishop. The office of Provincial is to see to everyday work of the Society, to direct the faithful, to establish missions, appoint clergy, and to settle disputes among other clerics. It is the job of the appointed cleric to see to the distributing of collective funds as needed to each established Mission as needed to operate. The Provincial must preside at the Annual meeting, and act as Moderator second only to the Overseeing Bishop.
c) Treasurer: Is elected from among the house of laity or clergy, and may be from either house, the term is elected by the entire houses Annually. Once appointed He/She will be given the balance of funds and all information pertaining to this office. Any misuse or abuse of this office will result in disciplinary action decided by the Provincial and overseeing Bishop.
d) Secretary: is also elected from among the house of Laity or Clergy, and acts as a representative for bookkeeping and an issuer of notices for the entire Society.
e) Bishops of Established Parishes or Missions: We allow for Bishops adjoined to this society to appoint sub-missions adjoined to their own respective cathedral parishes. This means that those missions branching from their Cathedral parishes will be established inside of the Society, and will operate and be inducted as associated missions within this society.
Alternate e) Bishops of Established Parishes or Missions: We allow for the Bishops of other jurisdictions to join our Society as an Affiliate Community. It is the responsibility of that Bishop to insure the adherence to our Canons, in addition to any of their own prescribed and established Canons. Violations agains the Canons will result in a hearing and disciplinary actions and may result in a revocation of Affiliate status.
Canon 3) Reception of Clergy: We will accept clergy from other Jurisdictions on the understanding that they are faithful to the common cause, liturgical function and faith of the Society. All Clergy will conduct themselves as proper clergymen and give testimony to the cause of Christ, any clergyman found not conducting himself as a Christian, and decent man, will be reprimanded and corrected by the Provincial and overseeing Bishop.
Canon 4) Establishment of a Mission: A Mission will be established at the discretion of the Provincial, and must meet the following guidelines to keep the said status within this Society:
a. A Mission will be established only with the faithful participation of at least 2 or 3 members.
b. Each Mission established must have one clergyman attached to it for weekly worship with the laity.
c. The Mission must provide for its own upkeep and financial stability. (It must provide for its own meeting place and articles associated with the liturgy and sacraments.)
d. The established mission must receive a letter of operation from the Provincial, and support its clergy in any way that the local body has ability.
Canon 5) Disciplinary action against offending clergy: All Clergy will be expected to act as Christians Men, obeying the Gospel and working toward the common cause for up-building Christ's Kingdom. Any activity or participation in activities resulting in scandal or shame to the Society, or its members, will result in immediate disciplinary action given by the Provincial and Overseeing Bishop, the result will vary by offence but will follow an investigation as to the offense. ANY OFFENSE INVOLVED WITH THE PHYSICAL, SEXUAL, MENTAL, OR SOCIAL ABUSE OF A MINOR OR SENIOR ADULT WILL NOT BE TOLERATED BY THIS SOCIETY AND WILL RESULT IN PROSECUTION AND THE HARSHEST PUNISHMENT AS TO THE LAWS OF THE STATE IN WHICH THE OFFENDING PARTY RESIDES.
Canon 6) Candidates for Holy Orders: Candidates for Holy Orders will be received first by the Provincial and then by the overseeing Bishop. All Candidates will apply for the Seminary of this established Society and is responsible for all costs pertaining to his/her education as a future clergyman in this Society. All persons ages 21+ may apply for Reception process, but must first be a member of this Society, or of an established Jurisdiction for at least 4 months prior to applying. Applications will only be accepted with a letter of endorsement from the Mission that you have served in or from a Bishop appointed as your previous protector. The office of Deaconess is available to women under the same requirements.
Canon 7) Seminary participation and Ordination of Candidates for Holy Orders: The Established Seminary of this Society is : St. Mary The Virgin Anglican Seminary, Students who are accepted for Holy Orders will be admitted to the seminary and must complete 2 years of study before being ordained a Deacon and 1 additional year before being ordained a Priest, with concurrent evaluation by the House of Bishops. Women entering the order of Deaconess will be expected at least 1 years of study. A Licensed Lay reader must take part in an Anglican studies course of at least 6 months provided by the Seminary. Ordinations will take place in the Annual Meeting, or at another appointed time.
Canon 8) Offices within the local missions and tithes: A Local vestry will be appointed in each Mission community, A Cleric, a Treasurer, a Secretary, and a Sacristan. the Cleric will be responsible to report to the Provincial monthly by letter or phone, and address the growth and activities of the local mission. All Missions will be responsible to send a monthly tithe to the common good of all Missions within the Society. A Reasonable tithe or gift of at least $5.00 a month from each Mission is expected to the General Treasury.