Resolution Writing 101

Assembly Resolutions Must Be Received by April 15, 2019 Deadline

1. Resolutions may be submitted by:

  • a congregation, or
  • a committee/conference (committee minutes indicating the resolution may be required with the resolution), or
  • ten voting members (their signatures, typed names, and phone numbers must be submitted with the resolution)

2. A resolution should be stated clearly and concisely.

3. Resolutions should be tested before they are submitted. Ask yourself . . .

  • Is the information in the resolution complete and accurate?
  • Is this a matter that pertains to the life and ministry of the synod?
  • Is this a matter of significance requiring consideration by the synod assembly?
  • Is the action requested one which the synod can appropriately and effectively implement?
  • Is this concern directed to the appropriate unit? Would it be best directed toward the synod council, the executive committee, a synod committee, the synod staff, etc.?
  • Do other people validate this idea?
  • Does my resolution answer the following questions: WHAT should be done? WHO should act? WHAT ENTITY should bear the cost, if any, and what cost is anticipated? WHEN should the action be done? TO WHOM should the results be reported?
  • If the resolution requires changes to the constitution or bylaws, are the proposed changes included in the resolution?
  • Does the resolution use specific, non-inflammatory language, including straightforward nouns and verbs?

4. The Resolutions Committee may:

  • Recommend adoption of the resolution;
  • Recommend adoption with proposed amendment;
  • Recommend defeat of the resolution;
  • Recommend referral to another entity;
  • Forward without recommendation;
  • Offer a substitute motion;
  • Return the resolution to the submitter for clarification or editing.

A resolution should be written in the following format:

WHEREAS: The WHEREAS sections clearly state the REASONS for the resolution. Each reason should be separate WHEREAS.

RESOLVED: The RESOLVED sections clearly state the action(s) desired–what should be done, who should do it, how it should be done, and when it should be done. Each action should be a separate RESOLVED so the assembly may deal with them individually.

If a resolution requires one action, use the following format:

RESOLVED, ______________________________.

If a resolution requires more than one action, the following format is used:

RESOLVED,  ____________________________; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, ________________.

If a resolution is preceded by a reason for submitting it, the following format is used:

WHEREAS, ________________________________;


If a resolution is preceded by two or more reasons, the following format is used:

WHEREAS, _____________________________; and

WHEREAS, ________________________________;


Please include with your resolution:

  • A title for your resolution.
  • Name of the congregation, committee, conference, or ten voting members names and phone numbers submitting resolution.
  • Date the resolution was submitted.
  • If possible, the author’s authorization to edit the resolution through a voting member of the assembly, if the author is not present.

Send completed resolutions by April 15, 2019 to: Northern Illinois Synod, Pr. Pat Esker and Resolutions Committee, 103 W. State St. Rockford IL 61101-1105 • 815-964-9934 • pesker@nisynod.orgReceipt of resolution will be acknowledged when it is received in the office.