What is an LEP?
Local Ecumenical Partnerships (LEPs) come in all shapes and sizes. They are created when Christian denominations work together under a formal agreement. One kind of agreement is extremely noticeable – when denominations come into partnership by setting up a single congregation. Others can be when they share a church building, or when they co-operate in chaplaincy.
In the case of a single congregation LEP, standard documents should be used to draw up the Constitution. They can be found here. These have been agreed by the Charity Commission, which makes it relatively easy to register the LEP as a charity.
Pastoral responsibility for LEPs always remains with the Churches, that is, with the relevant authorities of the denominations which form the partnership. Sometimes they are assisted in this by a Sponsoring Body which, if this is the case, is normally linked to or is a function of the way the Churches, accordingly to their needs in different places, co-operate normally at county level. This is called an ‘Intermediate Body’.