CICIAMS The International Catholic Committee of Nurses and Medico-Social Assistants - Comité International Catholique des Infirmières et Assistantes Médico-Sociales





Article I: Name and Nature

§ 1. The name of the Association of the Faithful is “Comité International Catholique des Infirmières et des Assistantes Medico-Sociales” (CICIAMS), in English, “International Catholic Committee of Nurses and Medico-Social Assistants”. CICIAMS is organised on the world wide and international level. National Catholic Associations of Nurses, Midwives and Health Workers may be organised by groups of countries, known as regions. The address of CICIAMS General Secretariat will be determined by the Executive Board and ratified by the General Council.

§ 2. The shortened name, CICIAMS, may be used on all deeds, invoices, announcements, issues and other articles issued by the association. The name CICIAMS is to be followed by the abbreviation INPO (International Non Profit Organisation) and the address of the association on all legal documents.

§ 3. CICIAMS is an International Private Association of the Faithful, doted with juridical personality according to canons 298-311 and 321-329 of the Code of Canon Law. CICIAMS headquarters is at Palazzo San Calisto, 00120 Vatican City. This fixed headquarters can be changed with the approval of the Discastery for Laity, Family and Life.

§ 4. CICIAMS collaborates in a regular way with the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life and the Secretariat of State in what pertains to its presence and activity before International Organisations (cf. Ap. Const. Praedicate Evangelium, art. 49). CICIAMS also maintains relations with the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, the Dicastery of the Holy See particularly interested by reason of the subject matter (cf. Ap. Const. Praedicate Evangelium, art. 171).

§ 5. CICIAMS collaborates worldwide with intergovernmental organisations including the United Nations Department of Global Communications, ECOSOC and the World Health Organisation

Article 2: Mission Statement

§ 1. CICIAMS Mission Statement: Informed by the moral and social teachings of the Church, CICIAMS is committed to the following:

a) Giving Christian witness in our lives through guiding and supporting Healthcare workers internationally

b) Developing a positive vision of life from conception to death

c) Representing Christian and professional values in our work with other national and international associations

d) Coordinating the work of member associations in their efforts to evangelise the ethos and ideals of the nursing profession

e) Promoting the initiation of and participation in professional research and development towards the achievement of optimum care and wellbeing

f) Respecting the religious convictions of others and accepting their rights to practise their beliefs.

Article 3: Aims

§ 1. The Aims of CICIAMS are:

a) Representing the professional and Christian interests of its members

b) Promoting the spiritual welfare and ethical values of its members

c) Promoting health and social measures of health, following Catholic principles and professional development

d) Promoting cooperation among member associations.

Article 4: Means

§ 1. The Means of CICIAMS are:

a) Organising seminars on relevant topics

b) Encouraging and supporting member associations in their efforts to participate in professional activities and undertakings

c) Supporting members especially in developing countries or in countries or regions in which there is instability or where natural disasters have occurred

d) Facilitating prayer and liturgical worship, as appropriate, in connection with its activities

e) Publishing a newsletter at regular intervals to disseminate information and to promote unity among member associations.


Article 5: Structure

§ 1. The structure of CICIAMS membership is comprised of national members from four designated geographical regions. The regions are:

a)  Africa

b)  Asia

c)  Europe

d)  Pan American Region

The number of members of CICIAMS is unlimited but must comprise at least two national members. The languages of CICIAMS are English, French and Spanish.

§ 2. The four types and requirement of membership are:

a) Full Membership is for national associations. It is required that each national member association shall be Catholic in nature and shall have been approved by their competent Ecclesiastical Authority. Each Full Member association is bound by the statutes, regulations and organisational structures of CICIAMS, approved the General Council while keeping their own autonomy. Each national association has one vote at the General Council Meetings.

b) Associated Membership is for professional associations that do not meet the conditions laid down in the CICIAMS regulations for full membership such as hospitals, health care institutions, nursing colleges and other professional associations. Each Associated Member or individual member can resign from CICIAMS at any time. They are bound by the statutes, regulations and organisational structures of CICIAMS and approved by the General Council.

c) Individual Membership is for Catholic individuals associated with the Health Care Professions. They are required to provide a letter from their pastor. The individual members must be approved by the Executive Board.

d) Honorary Membership is for individuals who will be recognised for outstanding services rendered to CICIAMS. Names may be submitted to the General Secretary three months prior to a General Council Meeting. They will be elected by the General Council.

Article 6: Resignations/Discharge of Members

§ 1. Resignation of members from CICIAMS shall be made in writing by way of a letter signed by the President and Secretary of the member association and sent to the General Secretary of CICIAMS. The Executive Board will acknowledge the resignation. The individual member may resign with a letter to the General Secretary. The Executive Board will acknowledge the resignation.

§ 2. Membership of CICIAMS shall be withdrawn from a member association where there is evidence of noncompliance with the statutes. The exclusion will be determined by the General Council by simple majority vote after evidence has been presented and the member association has been given the opportunity to respond to the accusation

Article 7: Fees

§ 1. Payment of membership fees: All member associations pay a fee to CICIAMS annually, which will be used to realize its aims. The amount of the fee is determined by the General Council. Notice of fees due are sent on June 1st and fees are due by June 30th.


Article 8: General Council

§ 1. The General Council is the supreme governing body of CICIAMS. The Council consists of the full Executive Board and the presidents of national associations or their representatives. It is responsible for the general policy of the International Association.

§ 2. The responsibilities of the General Council are:

a) Making decisions regarding the general programme and activities of CICIAMS

b) Electing the Executive Officers of the Board, Chairpersons of the Permanent and Special Committees and Representatives to International Bodies

c) Approving the appointment of Regional Presidents elected by the member associations of the relevant Regions

d) Approving candidates for new membership

e) Approving the rules and regulations of CICIAMS

f) Approving the Financial Report, the budget estimates and membership fees

g) Approving the dates, venue and theme for the World Congress of CICIAMS

h) Examining the important issues that occur in the field of health care and particularly those proposed by member associations

i) Adopting resolutions for the work of the Executive Board

j) Creating regional areas

k) Appointing Special Committees

l) Appointing delegates to the Executive Board for specific purposes

m) Appointing the Executive Board all or part of its functions between General Council Meetings

n) Confirming the Executive Board’s selection of the Ecclesiastical Assistant

o) Confirming the Executive Board’s selection for the address/location of the General Secretariat

p) Calling a General Council Meeting at least every two years and more often if necessary

Article 9: Election and duties of the International Officers and Executive Board Members

§ 1. The International President is elected with an absolute majority by the General Council.

a) The International President’s duties are to represent CICIAMS in all legal and official business. He/she is chairperson of all Executive Board and General Council Meetings and attends all congresses and meetings of CICIAMS and its committees when possible.

b) He/she works within the financial budget proposed by the Financial Committee and approved by the Executive Board

c) With the approval of the Executive Board, The International President may delegate all or part of his/her duties to an appropriate member of CICIAMS

d) A report is required for each Executive Board and General Council Meeting.

§ 2. The Regional Presidents are elected by Member Associations of their regions and approved by the General Council. .

a) The Regional President’s duties include coordinating CICIAMS activities in his/her region, representing the interests of the Region as a member of the Executive Board, taking account of the global nature and interests of CICIAMS, submitting an annual report, including a financial statement to the Executive Board and proposing the venue, date and programme of seminars organised by the Region.

b) A report is required for every Executive Board and General Council Meeting.

§ 3. The Secretary General is elected by the General Council.

a) The Secretary General’s duties include managing the General Secretariat, maintaining official relations with intergovernmental and international organisations, carrying out the decisions taken by The General Council and The Executive Board , reporting on activities of CICIAMS to The General Council and The Executive Board , acting as liaison between CICIAMS and its member associations. He/she maintains contact with other International Catholic and Professional Organisations, coordinates the work of the committees and promotes the international character of the Secretariat. The Secretary General is authorised to make all decisions that are necessary in connection with the daily management of the General Secretariat. He/she carries out the work with the financial budget proposed by the finance committee and approved by the Executive Board.

b) A report is required for each Executive Board and General Council Meeting.

§ 4. The Treasurer is elected by The General Council .

a) The Treasurer’s duties are to chair the Finance Committee, to manage the finances of CICIAMS, collect fees fixed by The General Council , collect finances and make disbursements as necessary. He/she prepares and submits a projected budget to the General Council for the following two years. The Treasurer submits a financial report to The Executive Board and The General Council at each meeting. He/she prepares the annual statement of accounts for auditing, makes payments as approved by The Executive Board and presents a financial statement of income and expenditure at each meeting.

b) A report is required for each Executive Board and General Council Meeting .

§ 5. The CICIAMS Executive Board shall select The Ecclesiastical Assistant for a four-year term. The General Council confirms him.

a) The Ecclesiastical Assistant must be confirmed by the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life (cf. CIC, can.324 § 2). He must obtain the prior agreement of his Ordinary. The Ecclesiastical Assistant is invited to attend all congresses and various meetings of CICIAMS and its committees. He shall support the spiritual needs of the members and provide guidance in moral and ethical issues. He has no vote.

§ 6. The Chairpersons of Permanent Committees and Representatives to International Bodies are elected by The General Council.

a) Each of the four regions is to obtain a member for each of the permanent committees..

b) Chairpersons of the Permanent Committees are:

  • Statutes
  • Finance
  • Professional
  • Midwives
  • Family
  • Ethics

c) Representatives to International Bodies are:

  • World Health Organisation
  • United Nations Department of Information and ECOSOC

d) The Chairpersons of the Permanent Committees and Representatives to the international bodies must submit reports on their activities at each Executive Board and General Council Meeting.

e) Delegates appointed by the General Council to the Executive Board for a specific project are members of the Executive Board until the specific needs are met and a report has been given.

§ 7. Terms of Office of Members of the Executive Board

a) The term of office in the executive board is a maximum duration of four years.

b) The same person can be elected to the executive board for a maximum period of eight consecutive years for all positions.

c) After the maximum period of eight years, re-election is possible only after a vacancy for one term.

d) The provisions set out in a), b) and c) do not apply to the person who is elected International President, this person being able to exercise this function independently of time already spent in other positions within the executive board. Any member who has filled the function of international president for a maximum period of eight years cannot access this position again. The member can, however, hold other positions on the executive board after a vacancy of two terms relative to this other position.

Article 10: Duties and Responsibilities of the Executive Board

§ 1. Duties and responsibilities of the Executive Board are:

a) The International Officers should hold a meeting once a year apart from the full Executive Board Meeting .

b) The full Executive Board should hold a meeting once a year and more often if necessary.

c) The Executive Board is responsible for the management of CICIAMS between the meetings of the General Council and conducts its activities according to the directives from the General Council.

d) The Executive Board will manage the affairs of CICIAMS and will have full authorisation to act in every circumstance that is not distinctly reserved by law or the regulations of the General Council. The Executive Board will act as claimant or defender in all lawsuits. The Executive Board will proclaim all internal regulations that it finds appropriate and useful

e) The Executive Board can only make valid consultations and decisions if the majority of the international officers are present or represented. Each member of the Executive Board has one vote. A simple majority of the votes makes decisions. The vote of the International President or the person who replaces him/her will be decisive in case of lack of majority.

f) In case of emergency, decisions of the Executive Board can also be made outside a meeting. In that case, all members of the board should be informed in detail in writing or by E-mail prior to the decision to be made. They should also give their consent in writing with the reason for their decision. Decisions made in this manner should be ratified during the next Executive Board Meeting..

g) The members of the Executive Board should be, as far as possible, chosen from the different regions and countries to maintain CICIAMS international identity..

h) The Executive Board may execute actions for removal/suspension of an Executive Officer, Chairs/members of any Permanent Committees, International Representatives or special Delegates for misdemeanour or incompetence. A simple majority vote is required at an Executive Board Meeting.

Article 11:Voting

§ 1. At least six months prior to the anticipated date of election all member associations of CICIAMS will be advised by the Secretary General of the vacancies to be filled within the Executive Board. The associations will send nominations to the Secretary General within three months of the date of elections..

a) The same person can be presented for several functions within the Executive Board..

b) The candidates must be members of their national association and be sufficiently available to fulfil their function..

c) The nomination of the candidate should include a Curriculum Vitae, an application letter from the candidate and a written approval of the association of which the candidate is a member. If the member association does not respond within three months before the election date, it loses the right to present a candidate.

d) The list of nominees for all open positions is prepared by the Secretary General and submitted to the Executive Board for approval. The list of the approved candidates for the election with their Curriculum Vitae must be sent to all member associations prior to the General Council Meeting.

e) There must be a quorum of a simple majority of paid members at the General Council Meeting for the voting to take place. The associations unable to be present at a General Council Meeting should send their voting preferences in a sealed envelope to the Chairperson of the Committee on Statutes, which will only be opened at the count of votes. Each association member has one vote for each position.

f) In order to ensure compliance with the regulations surrounding Elections and Vote Counting, the Committee on Statutes will select an Ad Hoc Committee of Scrutinisers consisting of five persons, delegates from associations not proposing candidates for election and as far as possible representing each Region.

g) These Scrutinisers will be presented by the Executive Board to the General Council for approval. The sealed envelopes containing the votes by proxy will be opened in the presence of the Chairperson of the Committee on Statutes.

h) A simple majority is required. The International President will announce the results following verification by the Scrutinisers and the Committee on Statutes..


Article 12: Resources

The resources of CICIAMS include the annual fee from member associations; subsidies, gifts and grants that might be given to CICIAMS; the Solidarity Fund to be used according to the regulations of the Solidarity Fund set up by the General Council; sponsorship for projects; and profit from World Congresses and Regional Seminars. The financial year of CICIAMS is from January 1st until December 31st, unless a contrary decision is made by the General Council. The Executive Board will close all invoices of the past financial year and will prepare for the estimation of the coming financial year.


Article 13: Process for Dissolution

§ 1. Before making any decisions regarding the dissolution of CICIAMS, the International President will consult the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life which must give its assent prior to any vote on dissolution.

§ 2. After consultation with the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life the General Council Members must be notified three months in advance of a Special General Council Meeting to address decisions regarding dissolution and the liquidation of the assets of CICIAMS. It will require two-thirds majority vote at the meeting of the General Council where at least half of the full paid members are present or represented..

§ 3. In the event of the dissolution of CICIAMS, the attribution of any remaining assets will be determined by a simple majority of the members or their representatives present at the General Council Meeting, taking into consideration the aims of CICIAMS and in favour of its member associations.


Article 14: Process for Modifications

§ 1. CICIAMS operates in conformity with Canon Law. Questions not specified by the current Statutes can be ordered by internal rules under Canon Law or according to the civil legal system of the country in which the General Secretariat is based, unless prejudicial to rights and duties under Canon Law.

§ 2. Any member association or the Executive Board may submit an amendment proposal. All the amendment proposals concerning these Statutes must be sent to the Secretary General. The proposals must be sent by the Secretary General to be examined by the General Council Members six months before the General Council Meeting that will vote on them. Amendments shall be considered approved only if voted by a majority of two-thirds of paid members or representatives present at the General Council Meeting. Any modification to the Statutes requires the approval of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life before coming into effect.


  • Dublin, Ireland. 23 September 2014
  • Amended 9 September 2020
  • Amended 1 August 2022
  • Amended 12 October 2022

These Statutes, in their original form, have been deposited in the archives of the Dicastery
From the Vatican, 11th February 2023

Linda Ghisoni