Episcopal Church Writing Style Guide

Constitution and Canons

Capitalize when referring to the published document containing the official set of governing rules for The Episcopal Church and in numbered citations. Lowercase in other uses.

  • The Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church is published as a separate volume following each General Convention.
  • The Episcopal Church’s constitution was first adopted by General Convention in 1789. The canons of The Episcopal Church are enacted by the General Convention.
  • The most familiar description of the roles and functions of the presiding bishop can be found in Canon I.2.4 of the Constitution and Canons of The Episcopal Church.
  • On the day following that joint session, the House of Bishops will elect one of the nominated bishops to be presiding bishop “by a vote of a majority of all bishops, excluding retired bishops not present, except that whenever two-thirds of the House of Bishops are present a majority vote shall suffice” (Constitution I.3).