In a letter dated October 5, 2007, Metropolitan Herman confirmed his decision to appoint His Grace, Bishop Benjamin as Chair of the reconstituted Special Investigative Committee. The letter also included a clear mandate for the Committee to continue to probe the details related to financial mismanagement that took place in past years within the Central Administration of the Church. Of those initially appointed to serve as the Special Investigative Committee during the Joint Meeting of the Holy Synod and Metropolitan Council held in December 2006, Bishop Benjamin and Dr. Faith Skordinski are the two remaining members
The letter of Metropolitan Herman reads as follows:
“This letter will serve to confirm your appointment as the Chair of the new Investigative Committee that will be designated to continue the work of the Special Investigative Committee of which you were a valued member. I appreciate your willingness to serve in this capacity and to take on the tasks necessary to help bring closure to the remaining open issues. In addition to yourself, please contact the following persons to see if they would be willing to serve on the Committee as well:
- Archpriest Joseph Lickwar
- Archpriest Michael Dahulich
- Archpriest John H. Erickson
- Priest David Garretson
- Dr. Faith Skordinski
“Since all of the above were directly involved in the Diocesan Trial of the former chancellor, they are the only ones to have heard all of the evidence presented and are certainly in the best position to address the issues impartially and quickly. Please pass on to them my sincere desire that they serve and the thanks of the Church for taking on these additional responsibilities.
“I trust to your judgment the exact nature and procedure of the work of the Committee but at a minimum, I would expect the following to be accomplished:
- determine what tasks need to be concluded in order to bring the investigation to a conclusion;
- conduct all necessary interviews of persons that in your judgment may have information germane to the matters in issue;
- make written recommendations to the Holy Synod as to what disciplinary measures should be initiated against any individual;
- provide monthly reports to keep the Synod apprised of your progress; and
- conclude the investigation expeditiously and provide a written report to the Holy Synod of your complete findings.
“No witnesses are off limits, including myself, and I would expect that you and the Committee would follow the evidence wherever it leads you. It is my hope that the investigation be concluded as soon as practical so that we can begin the process of healing that we so desperately need.”
The work of the Special Investigative Committee is an agenda item for the upcoming meeting of the Holy Synod on October 16th and for the Joint Meeting of the Holy Synod and Metropolitan Council scheduled for October 17, 2007.