Following Matins and breakfast, the fourth and final day of the Church Assembly (Sabor) began with the agenda item named Constitutional Matters.
Bishop Irinej called upon attorney Louis-Ljubisa Milicich to present the 2019 edition of the three documents which govern our USA Dioceses: the Constitution, the General Rules and Regulations and the Uniform Rules and Regulations for Parishes and Church-School Congregations. A newly printed “white book” with these documents was distributed to the clergy and laity members of the Sabor. The versions of the governing documents contained in the “white book” have no material changes and merely incorporate all of the hierarchical decisions of the Holy Assembly of Bishops and the Episcopal Council rendered since the 2006 “yellow booklet” and the 2007 “brown booklet” were printed, including but not limited to the May 2018 decision of the Holy Assembly of Bishops to arrondate/limit the territorial scope of these documents to the United States of America. Said May 2018 decision of the Holy Assembly of Bishops was read to the Sabor by Bishop Irinej in its entirety, in both Serbian and English, on the first day of the Sabor. Ljubisa Milicich (member of the Central Church Council Legal Risk and Compliance Committee) went through the “white book” and identified the exact hierarchical changes, page by page. More importantly, both Bishop Irinej and Ljubisa informed the Sabor that a Legislative Committee will be appointed by the Episcopal Council to review these three governing documents and propose revisions/changes at the next Sabor. Regional meetings are planned so as to solicit opinions and suggestions for these same. A lively discussion ensued.
During the sixth and final plenary session members of the Central Church Council were elected. Afterward, a motion to adjourn the meeting was made and then seconded and all stood for the closing prayer. In continuation, “Memory Eternal” was sung in prayerful memory of all hierarchs, priests, deacons and lay leaders who had passed away since the 2014 Sabor, after which “Many Years” was intoned for all present clergy and lay leaders. A group photograph was taken in front of the monastery church. Following lunch, the bishops, clergy, monastics and faithful sons and daughters of the Serbian Orthodox Church made their way home, to their local dioceses, parishes and church families. As much as was accomplished at this Church Assembly (Sabor) much more has been endowed to its participants to take to their parishes and continue the work which lies ahead.