Philippine Independent Church – Episcopal Church Agreement
Approved by the House of Bishops, 1961
Increased movement of Filipinos to the United States in recent years has brought in-creased numbers of PIC members to the United States, thus opening up new dimensions in ministry and responsibility on the parts of the concordat churches. The Obispo Maximo (OM) of the PIC and Presiding Bishop (PB) of the EC desire to establish an agreement whereby the two churches reaffirm their strong and deep commit-ment to the concordat relationship.
Recognizing the expressed aspirations and will of PIC members in the U.S. and consistent with the 1961 concordat of full communion, the relevant canons of the PIC and the EC and the distinctive heritages and cultures of both churches, we agree to these general principles:
The EC shall assist the PIC in its efforts to minister to PIC members in the U.S.
The PIC members shall assist and participate in the broader life and work of the EC.
Both the PIC and the EC shall establish appropriate authority lines and structures for purposes of mutual responsibility and accountability.
The OM and the EC shall designate representatives to sit in council to formulate strategies for mission.
Pursuant to the above principles we agree on the following terms of implementation.
The OM shall exercise pastoral oversight over all PIC members, clergy and parishes or congregations and, in collegial consultation with the PB, shall delegate such authority to an auxiliary who is resident in the U.S.
The PIC shall establish pastoral districts for PIC members in the U.S. The pastoral responsibility for such districts shall be exercised by an authority designated by the auxiliary of the OM. The authority may upon occasion delegate responsibility for pastoral care to the appropriate EC pastoral authori-ties. Members of the PIC under the pastoral care of the EC shall be understood to continue their membership in the PIC.
Where members of the PIC are sufficiently numerous and desire to form a PIC parish or congregation, they shall apply to the OM, through his auxiliary, for status in accordance with the PIC canons. Both the auxiliary and the local EC bishop shall engage in collegial consultations about the application before it is sent to the OM and the PB who shall consult about the application before the OM acts upon it.
PIC parishes or congregations shall share as fully as possible in the common life of the diocese, including diocesan convention, clericus meetings, deanery, committees, and the like; provided, that these PIC parishes or congregations fulfill the EC canonical provisions relating to affiliation.
PIC parishes or congregations shall participate with the OM’s auxiliary in the Episcopal Asiamerica Ministry Commission and its Filipino Convocation for regular consultation to express and strengthen the fellowship and enable common witness.
For all PIC clergy who are presently functioning in the U.S. and who intend to function in the future, accreditation shall be required. To implement such a process of accreditation, the OM and the PIC Executive Commission shall create a commission on accreditation which shall recommend to the OM the names of clergy to be accredited for ministry in the U.S. Such list shall be forwarded to the PB for record and reference purposes. No PIC clergy shall be recognized or allowed to function in either church unless he is properly accredited. Accreditation shall be reviewed periodically. PIC priests may be licensed by the EC bishop to function in the diocese.
Ordination of priests and deacons by a PIC bishop shall be according to the requirements and discipline of the PIC. Notification of such ordinations shall be forwarded to the office of the PB for record and reference purposes. The OM’s auxiliary shall inform the EC bishop in whose EC diocese the ordination takes place.
When EC dioceses organize EC congregations primarily for mission and ministry to Filipinos not members of the PIC, they may call PIC priests under the provisions of Title III, Canon 12 of the EC; provided, that the OM through his auxiliary approve said priest serving under the jurisdiction of the bishop of the EC diocese.
Any amendment to this agreement when deemed necessary, may be made by mutual consent of the OM and the PB and in accordance with their respective canonical authorities.
This agreement on partnership in mission and ministry to the PIC members in the United States having been concluded, the Presiding Bishop and the Obispo Maximo look forward to developing a second agreement whereby the two Churches shall express their mutual responsibility and interdependence in the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church through partnership in mission and ministry in the Republic of the Philippines.