Join the Electoral Roll
At Christ Church our vision is to play our part in growing the Kingdom of God in Clifton, Bristol and beyond. We would love you to be a part of our family as we worship God, build community and reach out to others with the Good News of Jesus. If Christ Church is your home we encourage you to join the church Electoral Roll by completing the form on this page. Read on to find out what this means...
What is the Electoral Roll?
The Electoral Roll is the list of electors at Christ Church. In the same way that being on the civic Electoral Roll allows you to vote in parliamentary and local elections and referenda, joining the Electoral Roll at Christ Church means that you can vote on church matters, attend the Annual Parochial Church Meeting (APCM) and stand for election to the Parochial Church Council (PCC). Being on the Electoral Roll does NOT make you a “member” of Christ Church; simply regarding Christ Church as your spiritual home does that. Indeed, a condition of joining the Roll is that you are already a “member” of the church family here at Christ Church!
Do I have to join?
You can of course be a full and active member of Christ Church without joining the Roll. Being on the Electoral Roll does not entail signing up to any additional commitments. However, it does help the Church show its strength, both locally and nationally. And joining the Electoral Roll is necessary if you want to stand for election to the PCC or other synodical councils (such as the Deanery, Diocesan or General Synod) or attend and vote at the APCM. Joining the Electoral Roll is an important statement of witness and a step along the path of discipleship. With your name on the Electoral Roll, the strength of the Church can be seen in our local area, and across the Diocese. If you’re a regular at Christ Church, you should be on the Electoral Roll!
What does the Electoral Roll affect?
The Electoral Roll is the only official register of membership within the Church of England. When the national press talk about numbers attending church services, this is based on Electoral Roll figures. As such, it is a great encouragement to our Bishop and the national church for the Electoral Roll at Christ Church to be as representative as possible of the actual members of our Church family. In addition, the size of our Electoral Roll affects the number of representatives on the PCC and the other synodical bodies. In a large church like Christ Church, this is less significant than for smaller churches, but we still wish to be as representative as possible. Numbers on the Electoral Roll do not directly affect our Parish Share – this is the amount we give to the diocese each year to cover the cost of our clergy and other central costs.
I’m convinced – how do I join?
Please complete the application form on this page. Although you can join the Electoral Roll at any time, to be eligible to participate at the Annual Parochial Church Meeting you must submit your application no later than 14 days before the meeting. Applications received after this date will be added to the Electoral Roll after the APCM.
I can’t remember if I have joined already?
The Electoral Roll is completely renewed every six years, the last time being in 2013. If you have completed an Electoral Roll form since then you are already on the Roll and do not need to re-apply. If you are not sure, a full printout of the current Roll is displayed on the noticeboard in the entrance lobby at Christ Church, or you can contact the Church Office to check.
My details have changed recently
If you are already on the Electoral Roll and your contact details have recently changed, it would be helpful if you could notify the Church Office so we can amend our membership database.
Any other questions?
Please go to the InfoHub, speak to a member of staff, or contact the Church Office. We would be delighted to help.
Application to join the Electoral Roll
Do I qualify to join the Roll?
To apply for the Electoral Roll you must meet ALL the following conditions:
You must be aged 16 or over (though you can apply in the year you become 16 and your name will be entered once your birth date has passed).
You must be a lay person and baptized.
You must be a member of the Church of England and EITHER live in the parish of Christ Church Clifton OR have attended Christ Church regularly for at least 6 months. In this context, regularly means at least twice a month.
The phrase “member of the Church of England” requires further explanation and means one of the following:
Member of the Church of England
Member of a Church in communion with the Church of England. The only Churches at present in communion with the Church of England are other Anglican Churches (excepting the so-called Anglican continuing Churches in North America) and some other foreign churches.
Member of a Church not in communion with the Church of England but which subscribes to the doctrine of the Holy Trinity; you must be prepared to also declare yourself a member of the Church of England. This category includes other Protestant denominations such as Moravian, Methodist, Presbyterian and Baptist, as well as Roman Catholic, URC, Russian/Greek Orthodox etc.
Some additional notes:
If you are a parish resident you do not have to actually attend the Church of which you consider yourself a member; but if you live outside the parish, the 6 months’ regular attendance at Christ Church is a requirement. If you know your postcode you can find out if you are resident in the parish by using the online tool at www.achurchnearyou.com.
You can be on the Electoral Roll of more than one Church, but you can only serve on the PCC of one Church at a time.
If you are not resident in the parish but were a regular worshipper at Christ Church, and have been prevented by sickness or absence or other essential reason from worshipping with us for the past six months, you can still join the Electoral Roll but please include a note on the form to indicate the reason you have not been able to attend regularly.
In these notes, “parish” means ecclesiastical parish.