The Act of Synod has been rescinded and is replaced by the House of Bishops’ Declaration.


An Act of Synod is a non-legislative instrument or resolution of the General Synod which is formally published as ‘the embodiment of the will or opinion of the Church of England as expressed by the whole body of the Synod’. Though it is morally binding, it is not legally enforceable. It contains no mechanism for resolving disputes or addressing grievances. By contrast, the House of Bishops’ Declaration on the Ministry of Bishops and Priests has associated with it a Resolution of Disputes Procedure established by Regulations under a Canon, under which grievances can be brought.


Rescinding an Act of Synod only requires simple majorities in the General Synod, whereas the House of Bishops will only be able to amend or revoke the Declaration if the amendment or revocation is supported by two-thirds majorities in each House of the General Synod.