'justice requires dialogue without intimidation'
WHEREAS questions of property are confusing to many persons within the church
WHEREAS this confusion has often resulted in pain and intimidation obscuring dialogue within the church
WHEREAS The United Church of Canada Act provides that property
be vested in The United Church
The United Church of Canada Act
5. Save as hereinafter provided, all property, real and personal, belonging to or held in trust for or to the use of The Presbyterian Church in Canada, The Methodist Church and The Congregational Churches ...shall from and after the coming into force of this Act be vested in The United Church, to be held, used and administered, subject to the provisions of this Act, in accordance with the terms and provisions of the Basis of Union.
6. Subject to the provisions of section eight hereof, all property, real and personal, belonging to or held by or in trust for or to the use of any congregation of any of the negotiating churches, shall, from and after the coming into force of this Act be held, used and administered for the benefit of the same congregation as a part of The United Church in the manner and upon the trusts and subject to the terms and provisions set forth in Schedule B to this Act, and all property, real and personal, thereafter acquired for or belonging to or held by or in trust for or to use of any congregation of The United Church shall be held, used and administered for the benefit of the said congregation as a part of The United Church upon the said trusts and subject to the said terms and provisions.
Basis of Union
5.3 Subject to the provisions of the next succeeding paragraph hereof, all property, real and personal, under the jurisdiction of the Parliament of Canada, held in trust for or to the use of a church, charge, circuit, or congregation of any of the negotiating Churches shall be held by trustees appointed by or on behalf of such church, charge, circuit, or congregation, upon trusts set forth and declared in a Model Trust Deed.
5.13 All lands, premises, and property acquired for the use of a local church or a Pastoral Charge of the United Church shall be held, used, and administered under the trusts of the above Model Trust Deed.
WHEREAS The United Church of Canada Act excepts properties
The United Church of Canada Act
6. Provided that any property, real or personal, held at the time of the coming into force of this Act or thereafter acquired by devise, bequest, transfer or gift, in trust for any special use of any congregation, shall be held, used and administered in accordance with the special trusts so declared in respect thereof...
8. Any real or personal property belonging to or held by or in trust for or to the use of any congregation, whether a congregation of the negotiating churches or a congregation received into The United Church after the coming into force of this Act, solely for its own benefit, and in which the denomination to which such congregation belongs has no right or interest, reversionary or otherwise, shall not be subject to the provisions of sections five and six hereof or to the control of The United Church, unless and until any such congregation at a meeting thereof regularly called for the purpose shall consent that such provisions shall apply to any such property or a specified part thereof.
Basis of Union
5.4 Any property or funds owned by a church, charge, circuit, or congregation at the time of the Union solely for its own benefit, or vested in trustees for the sole benefit of such church, charge, circuit, or congregation, and not for the denomination of which the said church, charge, circuit, or congregation formed a part, shall not be affected by the legislation giving effect to the Union or by any legislation of the United Church without the consent of the church, charge, circuit, or congregation for which such property is held in trust.
5.5 Churches, charges, circuits, or congregations received subsequent to the Union, into the United Church, with the approval of Presbyteries, shall be entitled, if they so desire, to the privileges of sections 5.1, 5.2, and 5.4.
WHEREAS reversionary refers only to the disposition of property if the
congregation ceases to exist
"... vest a reversionary interest in such property in the denomination, should the congregation cease to exist" [Manual 266]
WHEREAS all property held under the Trusts of Model Deed is subject
to a "trust, to permit, in conformity ...and not otherwise"
"4. And upon further trust, to permit, in conformity with the doctrines, discipline, by-laws, rules and regulations of The United Church of Canada and not otherwise..." [Manual, Appendix ii Trusts of Model Deed]
WHEREAS properties of former Methodist Churches were held by the denomination subject to a similar "trust"
WHEREAS properties of the former Presbyterian Church were specific to
the instruments of each property
An Act respecting the union of certain Presbyterian Churches therein named
Assented to 21st December, 1874
"6. But all such property, real or personal, as is affected by this Act, shall in all respects, save as aforesaid, be held and administered, as nearly as may be, in the same manner and subject to the same conditions as provided by the Deeds of Trust, Acts of Incorporation, or any other instruments or authority under which the same is now held or administered."
An Act respecting the Union of certain Presbyterian Churches therein named
Assented to 18th May, 1861
"...whose property is held under conveyance to the Trustees and their heirs or to the Trustees and their successors or otherwise ...shall ipso facto become vested in such newly elected Trustees jointly with the remaining Trustees, if any; and such Trustees, and their successors, to be appointed as aforesaid, shall have full power and authority to hold and administer the trust or corporate property of such congregation"
An Act incorporating the Board of Trustees of the Presbyterian Church in Canada
Assented to 30th April, 1900
"5. All lands and premises which have been or shall hereafter at any time be held by any trustee or trustees for any congregation which shall have ceased to exist or has become disorganized shall vest in the said Board of Trustees..."
admits property that did not "vest in the said Board of Trustees" before the congregation ceased to exist
WHEREAS properties of the former Congregational Church are held by the congregation
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Bay of Quinte Conference of The United Church of Canada petition the 38th General Council to make a clear statement about property ownership with reference to relevant documents.