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A synod is a council of a church, usually a Christian church, convened to decide an issue of doctrine or administration.

The word comes from the Greek "synodos" meaning assembly, and it is synonymous with the Latin word "concilium" - council. Originally synods were meetings of bishops, and is still used in that sense in Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy.

In the Catholic and Orthodox churches, synods are composed of bishops.

In Lutheran traditions a synod can be either a local administrative region similar to a diocese, such as the Minneapolis Area Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, or denote an entire church body, such as the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod.

In some Presbyterian polities of church, a synod is a level of administration between the general assembly and the local presbytery. This applies in the Uniting Church in Australia which incorporated many Presbyterians and their ideas when they united with Congregational and Methodist members. In most Anglican churches, there is a geographical hierarchy of synods, with "General Synod" at the top; bishops, clergy and laity meet as "houses" within the synod.

Sometimes the phrase general synod or general council refers to an ecumenical council. The word synod also refers to the standing council of high-ranking bishops governing some of the autocephalous Eastern Orthodox churches.

Table of contents
1 Some synods of note
2 Some councils of note
3 See also

Some synods of note

Some councils of note

See also