It is generally considered that minor changes to a church or church property would be managed through the parish council and the parish priest. Specifically routine or matters that would be considered maintenance would be unlikely to need endorsement of the Archdeacon or approval of the Archbishop. In all cases, if a parish is uncertain as to what would be considered minor they should consult with their Archdeacon. The concept behind this proposal is to provide the Archdeacons the ability through delegated responsibility of the Archbishop to endorse and approve or reject project proposals altering the fabric of a church. In all cases local and state heritage regulations must be factored into projects and identified during the application process if appropriate.
A parish wishing to make an alteration or modification to an existing worship centre licensed by the Bishop must undertake the following (when a major change or alteration is proposed, the Archdeacon should be consulted at the earliest possible time, well before a Faculty application is made)
- An application for a Faculty will require that the proposal is approved by resolution of parish council. The application must be by way of completion of the appropriate form with supporting documents.
- The application must be signed by the incumbent and a warden. It should address any implications for the Parish Mission Action Plan.
- The application will need to be displayed in the relevant church building for a period of not less than three Sundays and notice shall be given in church, either written or spoken. The dates the form is displayed which shall be notified in the application.
- The application will show full drawings detailing the proposal. The drawings should detail colours, materials fabrics and finishes, and other features that may have a bearing on the decision making process. The application shall detail the words to be included upon any plaque or memorial.
- Any and all expressions of concern about the proposal shall be forwarded in writing to the Archdeacon and the relevant parish office with the application.
- The faculty form shall be signed by the Archdeacon, and include any additional recommendation of the Archdeacon. In considering the application, the Archdeacon shall consider any implications for the Parish Mission Action Plan.
- The application will be submitted to the Archbishop only after receiving consideration by the Archdeacon and with the Archdeacon’s signature.
- In most cases the application shall proceed on the Archdeacon’s recommendation. Where the Archdeacon feels that it would be helpful to obtain additional advice, then the Archdeacon’s recommendation may be that the Archbishop’s Buildings and Faculties Advice Panel be used.
- Where deemed appropriate, the Archbishop may refer a matter to this panel. The Archbishop may also require that the Parish engage an Architect on major projects
- Consideration of financial or contractual matters by bodies such as the Diocesan Administration & Resource Executive shall not proceed until there is an Archdeacon’s recommendation on the Faculty process as well as a report on other relevant matters.
The following extract from the Parochial Administration Ordinance is relevant:
83 Buildings, Fittings, Furniture and Ornaments
(a) No building shall be erected or placed on the Parish Trust Property, and
(b) no building erected on the Parish Trust Property shall be altered, added to, demolished or removed from Parish Trust Property, without the consent of the Parish Council, the Parish Priest and the Bishop being in each instance obtained.
(a) No fittings furniture or ornaments shall be installed, placed in or removed from any building licensed for worship erected on Parish Trust Property, and
(b) no such fittings, furniture or ornaments shall be altered or added to without the consent of the Vestry of the congregation concerned, the Parish Priest and the Bishop being in each instance obtained.
(c) Any erection, placement, installation, alteration, addition, demolition or removal contrary to the provisions of this section shall forthwith be demolished, removed, restored, rebuilt, replaced or made good as the case may be by the Parish Council or Vestry as the case may be upon the Bishop requiring the same to be done and in accordance with any directions or modifications which the Bishop may direct.