The Make Up of the 44th General Council
During Decision Session 4, Friends in Council Rev. Marie-Claude Manga and Rev. Nancy Nourse shared information on the composition of the 44th General Council.
At the start of the Decision Sessions, there were 256 Commissioners on the roll (of a maximum of 260 eligible Commissioners). There is a balance of people in roles and experience, with almost half (45%) of Commissioners being lay people, and just over half (55%) being ministry personnel. For 128 Commissioners (or 50%), this is their first General Council.
Reflecting on other forms of diversity, the Council learned that 59% are women (cis or trans), 39% are men (cis or trans), and 3% are non-binary and/or genderqueer persons. Three quarters of the Commissioners identify as White, 14% as Racialized/People of Colour, 9% as Indigenous, and 2% as mixed race. Most Commissioners (190) are 46 years of age and over, and 61 are under 45. (Note that age information was not available for all Commissioners.)
As a whole gathering, there are over 500 people registered, including almost 50 Youth Forum members who engage in all business sessions and other programming, and Alternate Commissioners who are prepared to step in should a Commissioner become unable to participate. We are also joined by exhibitors, theological schools, and guest speakers, all of whom were able to share their information and stories in the Exhibit Hall in PheedLoop. Also in attendance are invited guests, including Global Partners and Ecumenical and Interfaith Partners, and the United Church's Partner Council members. Former Moderators, members of the General Council Executive, and members of the National Indigenous Council are also attending.
This Council is supported by two Honorary Elders, Ray Jones and Rev. Elenor Thompson.
To support Council through the processes, there are also chaplains, the equity support team, the business table, the facilitation team, and language interpreters. As each session of General Council 44 is held in worship, worship coordinators and musicians have helped in leadership. Countless staff and volunteers manage many behind-the-scenes elements of the first fully-virtual General Council.
Finally, the Council has been joined at various times by 312 registered visitors, and many more observers through the YouTube broadcast, news updates, and social media.
Full details of the Roll of Council are available in the Downloads, below.