Chapter 12 » 12.07

Eldership and oversight

Appointment of elders and overseers

Appointment as elder or overseer does not imply that the Friends concerned are elevated to a higher position but that the meeting recognises that they may have the capacity to serve it in a particular way. Appointments are for a three-year period and may be renewed for a further three years; sometimes it may be necessary or desirable for a Friend to serve as elder or overseer for more than six consecutive years but this should not happen routinely (see 3.23). There is need for adequate continuity but there should be no expectation of continuous uninterrupted service. Care should be taken that newly appointed elders and overseers understand the duties involved. Those who are not to be re-nominated should be informed before new names are submitted to the area meeting.

Nominations to these offices are made either by the area meeting standing nominations committee or by a special area meeting nominating committee, consisting of a group of Friends drawn from the constituent meetings for this purpose. Members should bear in mind that they are not bringing forward names from their local meetings for ratification but nominating elders and overseers from the area meeting as a whole.

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