An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society

The missionary organization and corporate body of the Episcopal Church. The constitution of the missionary society was first adopted by the special General Convention of 1821 and incorporated by the New York State legislature. In 1835 the General Convention adopted a new constitution which made membership in the society no longer voluntary but inclusive of all the baptized in the Episcopal Church. The constitution further declared the world to be the missionary field of the church and entrusted general missionary work to a reorganized board of missions. In 1877 the constitution of the society was enacted as a canon of the General Convention. This canon was amended in 1919 to provide for the Presiding Bishop and Council (now Executive Council) to be the directors of the society and to administer its work.

Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from “An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians,” Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.