His Eminence, Metropolitan Archbishop +Michael, THEOCUS Primate and Diocese Leader

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His Grace, Bishop +James, Bishop of the Western-Rite

 

             

 

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Our Diocese Leadership

 

THEOCUS DIOCESE GUIDELINES FOR CLERGY

MAJOR ORDERS:

OFFICE:  BISHOP

Suitable Candidates must be elected by a general Synod vote by majority. Following election, the "Bishop Elect" will be consecrated by the ruling Bishops of the THEOCUS Diocese.  The following conditions make a candidate eligible for election and consecration as a Bishop: 1. The candidate must be selected from unmarried male clergy.  2. The candidate must be elected by a majority Synod vote.  3. The candidate must have valid educational credentials which include but are not limited to, High School Diploma, college degree, Associates, Batchelor's Degree, or Master's Degree. The candidate must also complete the THEOCUS Seminary program as prescribed for the office of Bishop. 4.  The candidate cannot have a criminal record.  5.  The candidate cannot hold a public office. 6. The candidate must have been part of the THEOCUS Archdiocese for a minimum of three years prior to election and will be eligible for consecration in the year following the election by the Synod and Laity of THEOCUS.   

OFFICE:  ARCHIMANDRITE (MONK PRIEST)

Suitable Candidates will be appointed with the Metropolitan Archbishop's consent by any elected and consecrated Bishop of the THEOCUS Diocese.  The following conditions make a candidate eligible for elevation from Priest or Archpriest to Archimandrite: 1. The candidate must be selected from unmarried male clergy. 2. The candidate must have valid educational credentials which include but are not limited to, High School Diploma, college degree, Associates, Batchelor's Degree, or Master's Degree. The candidate must also complete the THEOCUS Seminary program as prescribed for the office of Priesthood. 3. The candidate cannot have a criminal record. 4. The candidate cannot hold a public office.

OFFICE:  ARCHPRIEST

Suitable Candidates will be appointed with the Metropolitan Archbishop's consent by any elected and consecrated Bishop of the THEOCUS Diocese. The following conditions make a candidate eligible for elevation to ArchPriest:  1. The male candidate must have valid educational credentials which include but are not limited to, High School Diploma, college degree, Associates, Batchelor's Degree, or Master's Degree. The candidate must also complete the THEOCUS Seminary program as prescribed for the office of Priesthood.  2. If the candidate wishes to be married clergy, he must be married before entering the rank of Deacon. If he is unmarried at the time he is ordained a priest, he must remain unmarried thereafter and may not enter into the sacrament of marriage after ordination without relinquishing his priestly duties.  3. The candidate cannot have a criminal record. 4. The candidate cannot hold a public office.

OFFICE:  PRIEST

Suitable Candidates will be appointed with the Metropolitan Archbishop's consent by any elected and consecrated Bishop of the THEOCUS Diocese. The following conditions make a candidate eligible for ordination as a Priest:  1. The male candidate must have valid educational credentials which include but are not limited to, High School Diploma, college degree, Associates, Batchelor's Degree, or Master's Degree. The candidate must also complete the THEOCUS Seminary program as prescribed for the office of Priesthood.  2. If the candidate wishes to be married clergy, he must be married before entering the rank of Deacon. If he is unmarried at the time he is ordained a priest, he must remain unmarried thereafter and may not enter into the sacrament of marriage after ordination without relinquishing his priestly duties.  3. The candidate cannot have a criminal record. 4. The candidate cannot hold a public office.

OFFICE: DEACON

Suitable Candidates will be appointed with the Metropolitan Archbishop's consent by any elected and consecrated Bishop of the THEOCUS Diocese. The following conditions make a candidate eligible for ordination as a Deacon:  1. The male candidate must have valid educational credentials which include but are not limited to, High School Diploma, college degree, Associates, Batchelor's Degree, or Master's Degree. The candidate must also complete the THEOCUS Seminary program as prescribed for the office of Deacon.   2. If the candidate wishes to be married clergy, he must be married before entering the rank of Deacon. If he is unmarried at the time he is ordained a Deacon, he must remain unmarried thereafter and may not enter into the sacrament of marriage after ordination without relinquishing his Diaconate duties.  3. The candidate cannot have a criminal record.  4. The candidate cannot hold a public office. 

CLERGY RULES AND REGULATIONS:

Clergymen ordained to the level of Priest and higher will receive an Antimension from the Archdiocese. This Antimension will contain holy relics. This Antimension will be therefore considered the property of the clergyman as long as they serve in and are part of the THEOCUS Archdiocese. If for any reason the clergyman leaves the THEOCUS Archdiocese, the Antimension must be returned to THEOCUS. Along with any property belonging to the Archdiocese, or any of its protectorate Churches and Missions. 

OFFICE: DEACONESS

Suitable Candidates will be appointed with the Metropolitan Archbishop's consent by any elected and consecrated Bishop of the THEOCUS Diocese. The following conditions make a candidate eligible for ordination as a Deaconess:  1. The female candidate must have valid educational credentials which include but are not limited to, High School Diploma, college degree, Associates, Batchelor's Degree, or Master's Degree. The candidate must also complete the THEOCUS Seminary program as prescribed for the office of Deacon.  2. The female candidate must be chosen from the monastic order and may not be married.  3. The candidate cannot have a criminal record. 4. The candidate cannot hold a public office.

MINOR ORDERS:

OFFICE: SUB-DEACON

Suitable Candidates will be appointed with the Metropolitan Archbishop's consent by any elected and consecrated Bishop of the THEOCUS Diocese. The following conditions make a candidate eligible for tonsure as a Sub-Deacon:  1. The male candidate must have valid educational credentials which include but are not limited to, High School Diploma, college degree, Associates, Batchelor's Degree, or Master's Degree. The candidate must also complete the THEOCUS Seminary program as prescribed for the office of Sub-Deacon.  2. The candidate cannot have a criminal record. 

OFFICE: CHURCH READER

Suitable Candidates will be appointed with the Metropolitan Archbishop's consent by any elected and consecrated Bishop of the THEOCUS Diocese. The following conditions make a candidate eligible for tonsure as a Church Reader:  1. The male candidate must have valid educational credentials which include but are not limited to, High School Diploma, college degree, Associates, Batchelor's Degree, or Master's Degree. The candidate must also complete the THEOCUS Seminary program as prescribed for the office of Church Reader.  2. The candidate cannot have a criminal record. 

OFFICE: HOSPITAL CHAPLAIN

Suitable Candidates will be appointed with the Metropolitan Archbishop's consent by any elected and consecrated Bishop of the THEOCUS Diocese. The following conditions make a candidate eligible as a Hospital Chaplain :  1. The candidate must have valid educational credentials which include but are not limited to, High School Diploma, college degree, Associates, Batchelor's Degree, or Master's Degree. The candidate must also complete the THEOCUS Seminary program as prescribed for Hospital Chaplain.  2. The candidate cannot have a criminal record. 

CLERGY RULES AND REGULATIONS:

(Adopted and ratified at the 2007 Synod in Niagra Falls, New York)

These common sense rules were discussed and enacted to show our commitment and resolve to protect all of our parishioners and clergy.  In light of the Roman Catholic scandal that is so prominent in the news; we felt it was necessary to formally express our rules and regulations and insure that our clergy and laity were informed of our official policy on the this subject.  Making our policy public underscores our commitment to this issue.

1.  ZERO TOLERANCE FOR CHILD ABUSE POLICY:  Any Clergy holding a Sacramental Office in the THEOCUS Diocese must have a clear criminal record. THEOCUS will NOT tolerate Child Abuse of any type.  Clergy of THEOCUS will NOT be protected by THEOCUS from legal prosecution in the case of Child Abuse.  THEOCUS WILL fully cooperate with state and federal criminal investigators should any THEOCUS Clergy be involved in a Child Abuse case.  Any THEOCUS Clergy that is convicted of Child Abuse shall be immediately removed from their Sacramental Office and will be subsequently banned from holding a Sacramental office in the THEOCUS Diocese in the future.

The following are common sense rules to safeguard both  minors and THEOCUS Clergy

2. PROTECTION OF CHILDREN POLICY:  Any Clergy holding a Sacramental Office in the THEOCUS Diocese is expected to follow this protocol when counseling a minor (Any person under the age of 18): The Clergy shall not meet with the minor in complete privacy under any circumstances. One or both parents must be present when the minor is counseled. If the minor wishes to have a private conversation with the clergy, they may do so by following these guidelines: A. The minor and clergy must be visible to one or both of the minor's parents. (You may accomplish this by having the parents stay at a distance, but still be visible, or you may have a counseling room that is separated by a window so that the parents may keep a constant watch on the child and the clergy.)  B. If the minor wishes to participate in the Sacrament of Confession, this must be done in clear view of one or both of the parents. C. Minors are not permitted to visit the home of Clergy without one or both of the parents present. (No overnight visits at a clergyman's home is permitted without one or both of the parents present.)  D. Church functions that include minors should be chaperoned by multiple adults, including parents of the minors.

(Adopted and ratified at the 2008 Synod in High Point, North Carolina)

This ruling was enacted to insure that monastic clergy that are presented to the Synod and laity for a vote to become Bishops in THEOCUS are worthy of the office and are sufficiently trustworthy to undertake the sacred duties that are required of a Bishop. 

1.  RULING THAT SPECIFIES THAT THE OFFICE OF BISHOP REQUIRE A POSTULANCY PERIOD: Any candidate put forth for the office of Bishop must have been part of the THEOCUS Archdiocese for a minimum of three years prior to election and will be eligible for consecration in the year following the election by the Synod and Laity of THEOCUS.  Consecrations will take place at designated Synod meetings unless there is an emergency need for expedited consecration.

 2.  RULING FOR THE RESPECT OF THEOCUS/CHURCH/MISSION OWNED PROPERTY: Any duly ordained clergy of THEOCUS must follow this rule:  Clergymen ordained to the level of Priest and higher will receive an Antimension from the Archdiocese. This Antimension will contain holy relics. This Antimension will be therefore considered the property of the clergyman as long as they serve in and are part of the THEOCUS Archdiocese. If for any reason the clergyman leaves the THEOCUS Archdiocese, the Antimension must be returned to THEOCUS. Along with any property belonging to the Archdiocese, or any of its protectorate Churches and Missions.