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Table of Contents

Article I – Church Membership

Sec. 1          Admission
Sec. 2          Transfer of Membership
Sec. 3          Maintenance of Membership Roll
Sec. 4          Disciplinary Action
Sec. 5          Restoration of Membership

Article II – Church Officers

Pastor

Sec. 1          Call
Sec. 2          Dismissal
Sec. 3          Duties

Deacons

Sec. 1          Qualifications
Sec. 2          Duties
Sec. 3          Number, Election, Terms of Service

Moderator

Clerk and Assistant Clerk

Treasurer

Sec. 1          Duties

Recording Secretary

Officers of Church Organizations

Employees and Staff

Article III – Committees

Sec. 1          Nominating Committee
Sec. 2          Finance Committee
Sec. 3          Membership Committee
Sec. 4          Trustees
Sec. 5          Kindergarten Committee
Sec. 6          Music Committee
Sec. 7          Personnel Committee
Sec. 8          Committee on Committees
Sec. 9          Temporary Committees

Article IV – Church Finance

Sec. 1          Subscription
Sec. 2          Responsibility of Finance Committee
Sec. 3          Budget
Sec. 4          Designated Gifts
Sec. 5          Special Offerings

Article V – Meetings

Sec. 1          Worship
Sec. 2          Business

Article VI – The Church Council

Sec. 1          Council Members
Sec. 2          Duties

Article VII – Amendments

 

 

ARTICLE I – CHURCH MEMBERSHIP

 

Section 1.

Any person desiring membership in Memorial Baptist Church will be received as a candidate in one of the following ways:

A. Admission by BaptismAny person publicly professing faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as personal Savior, giving evidence of spiritual rebirth, presenting themselves for baptism, may be received as a member, following baptism.

B. Admission by LetterMembers of other Baptist churches, upon promise of a letter of recommendation, may be received as a member.

C. Admission by StatementPersons who are unable to produce or secure a letter of recommendation, upon their statement of having received Christ as personal Savior and Lord and been baptized by immersion into the fellowship of a Baptist Church, may be received as a member.

D. Admission from Other DenominationsAny person from other denominations will be received as a member, upon their confession of faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and presenting themselves for Baptism. This is not to be construed as a reflection; upon the genuineness of their previous Christian experience, but is an effort to maintain the symbolism and significance of baptism itself.

Section 2. Transfer of Membership:

A letter of recommendation for church membership shall not be granted to an individual, but shall be considered as a communication between churches relative to the status of the member requesting this action. A letter of recommendation will be granted for anyone on the membership roll, upon receipt of a request from a duly authorized official of the Baptist Church in which membership is sought. This action must be substantiated by church vote.

Section 3. Maintenance of Membership Roll:

In an effort to maintain a realistic church membership roll, the following procedure will be employed:

If an individual moves to another locality and fails to request transfer of membership, or if a resident member persistently and deliberately fails to maintain contact with the church program, his name should be removed from the active church roll and placed in a file of inactive members, upon recommendation by the Deacons and vote of the church. This should be done annually. Such persons shall not be counted as members in any reports, nor shall they be accorded the privilege of voting. In the case of resident members, every reasonable effort will be made to restore them to active participation prior to above action.

Section 4. Disciplinary Action:

Should a member become an offense to the church by reason of immoral or unchristian conduct, or non-support of the church, the church should terminate his membership, but only after due notice and hearing and after faithful efforts have been made to bring such member to repentance and amendment. The membership of no person shall be terminated (except by letter) at the meeting when the recommendation for such action is made. All request for termination of membership or action looking thereto shall first be considered by the Deacons, who shall make recommendation to the church.

Section 5. Restoration of Membership:

Any person whose active membership status has been altered or whose membership has been terminated by disciplinary action may be restored upon recommendation by the Deacons and by vote of the church, after evidence of repentance.

 

ARTICLE II – CHURCH OFFICERS

PASTOR

Section 1. Call:

A pastor shall be chosen and called by the church whenever a vacancy occurs. His election shall take place at a meeting called for that purpose, for which at least one week’s public notice shall be given. A Pulpit committee shall be elected by the church. Each voting member shall nominate one person by secret ballot, the top seven constituting a committee. The committee shall bring to the consideration of the church one man at a time. Election shall be by secret ballot, an affirmative vote of seventy-five percent of those present being necessary for election. The pastor, thus elected, shall serve until this relationship is terminated. If the time should arise when it is necessary to terminate this relationship, the procedure shall be as follows:

Section 2. Dismissal:

Any member of the church at any regular church business meeting can offer a motion to call a special meeting to discuss dismissal of the pastor. An affirmative simple majority vote of the members present shall be necessary to call such meeting. If such a meeting is called, then the Chairman of the Deacons, or his representative, shall be required to announce such a special called meeting of the church body. This announcement shall be made for two consecutive Sundays at both morning and night services, prior to the week the special meeting shall be held. The Deacons shall provide an unbiased moderator who shall not be the pastor or any staff member of this church.

The vote shall be taken by secret ballot and an affirmative vote of fifty-five percent of those present and eligible to vote shall be necessary to dismiss the pastor. Eligibility of all voters shall be determined before taking the secret ballot.

Section 3. Duties:

A. The Pastor shall have in charge the welfare and oversight of the church.

B. He shall preside at all meetings of the church, as defined in Article V, preserve order and decorum at such meetings, to insure every member, without partiality, the exercise of his privileges; faithfully to use that influence which justly arises from the character of his office.

C. He shall preach the truth as he may derive it from the Word of God as his sole authority and as one who has to give an account of his ministry before God.

D. He shall visit the members of the church for the purpose of spiritual instructions, admonition and comfort; faithfully to warn and reprove those who backslide; to visit the sick; to embrace every opportunity to speak to the unsaved.

E. He shall fulfill the injunction – “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”

F. He shall be an ex-officio member of all church committees.

 

DEACONS

 

Section 1. Qualifications:

A. He shall endeavor to the best of his ability to live by the scriptural requirements set forth in and .

B. He shall be faithful to his Christian stewardship making the tithe a minimum of Christian giving.

C. He and his wife shall cooperate with the pastor and other deacons to support the entire church program. That he and his wife will faithfully attend the Sunday School, Training Union, Sunday worship services, Mid-week prayer services, the Brotherhood (for the deacon), the WMU (for the wife) unless providentially hindered.

Section 2. Duties:

In accordance with the meaning of the word “deacon” and the examples of the New Testament, deacons are to be servants of the church.

A. They shall be watchful over the welfare of the church and zealous to guard the unity of the spirit within the church in the bonds of peace.

B. They shall work with the Pastor to encourage the church in all matters concerning evangelism, spiritual growth and development of Christians.

C. They shall apportion the membership of the church among themselves, to know the spiritual needs, to interpret the church program, to establish a closer fellowship within the church, and provide assistance in time of need.

D. They shall name from their number a committee responsible for preparation and conduct of observance of the Lord’s Supper.

E. The Deacons shall serve as temporary pulpit committee in case of absence or inability of the Pastor. Subject to advice from the Pastor, they will provide for a pulpit supply. In any period when the church is without a pastor, unless the church would otherwise provide, the Deacons will arrange the temporary ministry and take counsel with reference to securing a pastor. It is not intended that in any wise to prejudice herein the method by which the church shall proceed in securing a pastor.

F. The Deacons shall assume responsibility for all matters relating to the membership as set forth in Article I, Sections 3, 4, and 5.

Section 3. Number, Election, Terms of Service:

A. There shall be between two and six deacons for the first one hundred resident members and one additional deacon for each additional fifty members, when qualified individuals are available to serve as deacons. (amended February 16, 2011)

B. Any individual considered eligible for service as a deacon shall first be recommended by the Nominating Committee. The Nominating Committee shall present to the church at the August business meeting a minimum of one-third more candidates than the number of vacancies. The required number of Deacons shall be elected at the September business meeting by secret ballot, the members receiving the highest number of votes being elected to fill the vacancies. The Deacons so elected will take office October 1st and will serve for two years. No deacon shall be eligible for election within one year of previous active service provided he has served a full two year term. Interim vacancies or increases in membership requiring an additional deacon during a term shall be filled by the candidate (s) who received the highest number of votes at the last election, provided such candidate is available and eligible. If no such candidate is available, the Nominating Committee shall present to the church at least one-third more candidates than shall be required to fill such vacancy. The Deacon so elected is to serve the remainder of the unexpired term.

C. Elected deacons who have not previously been ordained will be ordained by the church prior to their being placed in service. All deacons will be installed in a special service prior to their assuming service.

D. The Chairman of the body of Deacons shall be elected by the body of Deacons at the October meeting. No deacon shall serve two consecutive years as Chairman.

E. Approximately half of the Deacons shall rotate off annually.

F. All ordained Deacons in the church not in active service on the Body of Deacons will be available to assist the active Body as requested.

 

MODERATOR

 

The moderator shall be the Pastor. In the absence of the Pastor, the Chairman of the Deacons shall act as Moderator.

 

CLERK AND ASSISTANT CLERK

 

A Church Clerk and an Assistant Clerk shall be elected at the annual meeting upon nomination of the Nominating Committee.

The church clerk shall keep in a book a record of all the actions of the church, except as otherwise herein provided. He shall also notify all officers, members of committees, and messengers of their election or appointment.

He shall keep a copy of the Constitution and By-Laws attached to the record book, and shall be responsible for announcing the number of resident members and quorum needed at the beginning of any business meeting. This shall be the first order of business at any business meeting.

The Assistant Clerk shall keep a register of names of members, with dates of admission, dismissal or death, together with a record of baptisms. He shall have general charge of the membership rolls. Upon vote of the church, he writes for or sends church letters of membership. He shall make a detailed monthly and annual report as to all changes in the membership.

 

TREASURER

 

The Treasurer shall be elected at least one month before the beginning of the fiscal year, upon nomination by the Nominating Committee.

Section 1. Duties:

A. Upon authorization by the Finance Committee, preserve and pay out, upon receipt of properly approved and signed vouchers, all money or things of value paid or given to the church. Payment of bills for local work and expenses shall be made promptly by check, and all funds received for denominational or other causes shall be remitted at least monthly by check.

B. Devise and supervise a suitable system, subject to approval of the Finance Committee, to record and reconcile all receipts and disbursements of the church.

C. Render to the Finance Committee an itemized report of receipts and disbursements for the preceding month, and this report shall be made to the church at the regular monthly business meeting.

D. Within thirty days after the end of each fiscal year render to the Finance Committee and to the church an annual report showing the total amount of receipts, and an itemized statement of all disbursements. Prior to the rendition of this annual report, upon its completion by the Treasurer, the report shall be audited by an Audit Committee and their signatures placed at the end of the report before it is accepted by the church. This report shall then be delivered to the Church Clerk who shall keep it with the permanent record of the church.

E. The Treasurer shall, upon the election of his successor, at the completion of his fiscal report, promptly deliver to the Finance Committee all books, records, and accounts pertaining or relating to duties of his office.

F. All records kept by the Treasurer shall be considered the property of the church and shall be open to inspection at all times by any member of the church.

 

RECORDING SECRETARY

 

The Recording Secretary shall be elected by the church upon nomination of the Nominating Committee at the annual business meeting.

He shall receive the empty collection envelopes after the money has been removed and from these shall give each donor individual credit in an approved record system.

He shall also be responsible for preparing and mailing quarterly statements to all who contribute to the church financial program.

 

OFFICERS OF CHURCH ORGANIZATIONS

 

At least three months before the close of the church year the following shall be elected upon nomination of the Nominating Committee:

  • General Superintendent of the Sunday School
  • Training Union Director
  • President of Women’s Missionary Union
  • President of Brotherhood

The duties of these officers shall be designated by the approved denominational standards.

 

EMPLOYEES & STAFF MEMBERS

 

All paid church employees, except Music Director, Educational Director, Associate or Assistant Pastor, shall be employed by the Pastor. The Music Director, Educational Director, Associate or Assistant Pastor, shall be called by the church upon recommendations by the Pastor. All above employees shall be supervised and subject to dismissal by the Pastor.

All church officers, such as Educational Director and Minister of Music, must be members of this Baptist Church, and if married, the spouse also.

 

ARTICLE III – COMMITTEES

 

Section 1. Nominating Committee

This committee shall consist of four members elected by the church at the April business meeting, upon recommendation of the Pastor and in concurrence with the Body of Deacons. In addition, the newly elected Sunday School Superintendent, Training Union Director, President of the W.M.U. and Brotherhood President, shall be active members of this committee. Candidates may be nominated from the floor prior to any election.

Section 2. Finance Committee

This committee shall be elected by the church upon nomination by the Nominating Committee in May and serve for one year, from June 1 to June 1, and will consist of at least seven members. These members shall select their chairman. The Treasurer shall be an ex-officio member of this committee.

Duties of this committee are outlined in Article IV – Church Finance.

Section 3. Membership Committee

This committee shall be elected by the church upon recommendation by the Nominating Committee on or before the annual meeting. It shall consist of at least five members. The duties of this committee are to visit in the homes of all new church members to counsel and assist them in fulfilling the obligations as a member. This is to be done within two weeks after admission as a member.

Section 4. Trustees

This committee shall consist of at least four members elected by the church upon nomination by the Nominating Committee at the annual meeting to serve for two years, with approximately half of the members rotating off. Until their successors shall be elected, they will hold in trust the property of the church. They shall elect a chairman from their number.

They shall make recommendations to the church to buy, sell, mortgage, lease and transfer property. They shall enter into legal agreement on behalf of the church only to the extent authorized by the church. No vote shall be taken by the church on a proposal to buy or sell real property at the first business meeting when the proposal is made from the Trustees. They shall establish and administer policies concerning uses of church property.

Section 5. Kindergarten Committee

The kindergarten Committee shall consist of six women and one deacon. The members shall be elected for a two-year term with three members rotating off annually. The chairman and other members of this committee shall be elected by the church upon nomination by the Nominating Committee in the May business meeting. The term of office shall start June 1 and extend through May 31 two years hence.

This committee is responsible for the supervision and operation of the week-day school owned by the church.

The Director and staff are to be elected by the church upon recommendation of the Kindergarten Committee.

The budget of the Kindergarten shall be approved by the church and audited annually by an Audit Committee. A copy of the current Kindergarten operating policy shall be available in the church office for inspection by any member of the church.

Section 6. Music Committee

The Music Committee shall have general charge of all matters in connection with music of the church. The chairman shall be elected at the annual meeting, upon nomination by the Nominating Committee, and shall select the remainder of the committee.

Section 7. Personnel Committee

This committee shall consist of a minimum of five members. The members shall be elected by the church at the annual October meeting upon recommendation by the Nominating Committee. This committee shall assist the Pastor in all matters pertaining to the staff.

Section 8. Committee on Committees

A Committee on Committees shall have the responsibility of recommending to the church all permanent committees of the church, their duties and responsibilities. This committee shall be nominated by the Nominating Committee not later than the annual business meeting, and elected by the Church.

Section 9. Temporary Committees

All temporary committees to be appointed by the Pastor with duties specified at the time of appointment.

 

ARTICLE IV – CHURCH FINANCE

 

Section 1.

Because it is understood that membership in this church involves financial obligations to support the church and its causes with regular, proportionate gifts, each new member shall be immediately contacted by a representative of the Membership Committee for a subscription to the church’s inclusive budget; and at least annually plans shall be put into operation for securing a worthy subscription from each member of the church.

Section 2.

It shall be the responsibility of the Finance Committee to receive, deposit, and verify all offerings and gifts to the church and authorize the Treasurer to expend funds in accordance with the approved budget or by church action.

Section 3.

The Finance Committee, consulting with the pastor, deacons, and responsible leaders of various organizations, shall prepare and submit to the church for approval at its annual business meeting (or at such times as may be deemed best by the church) a budget, indicating by items, the amount needed and sought for all local expenses and purposes, and in like manner for all denominational or other approved non-local causes. Individual groups responsible for budgeted items will submit to the Finance Committee a proposed budget with justification or explanation prior to the consolidated budget being prepared.

Section 4.

All designated gifts for items not in the budget shall be referred to the Finance Committee for approval before any fund is established or purchases made.

Section 5.

Special offerings may be sought by the church or any of its organizations only upon approval of the church after consideration of the Finance Committee. Individuals and organizations should be discouraged from soliciting special offerings outside the unified church budget.

 

ARTICLE V – MEETINGS

 

Section 1. Worship

A. Worship service shall be held on the Lord’s Day and on Wednesday evening of each week.

B. The Lord’s Supper shall be celebrated on the first Sunday of every third month, or at such other times as the church may determine.

C. Occasional religious meetings, including revivals, may be arranged by the Pastor with concurrence of the Deacons, upon approval by vote of the church.

Section 2. Business

A. Special business meetings may be called by the Moderator after conferring with the Body of Deacons, at any regularly scheduled church service provided the purpose of the meeting has been stated from the pulpit.

B. The regular monthly business meeting of the church shall be held on Wednesday following the second Sunday of each month.

C. The annual meeting of the church shall be held on Wednesday following the second Sunday of October for the church year ending September 30. The annual reports shall be presented and messengers elected to the Associational meeting and such other business transacted as may be specified in the call or authorized by the By-Laws.

D. Quorum

25% – Call or Dismissal of Pastor
10% – Annual and Special Meetings
10% – Election of the following church Officers:
Deacons, Clerk, Treasurer, Sunday School Superintendent, Training Union Director, WMU President,
Brotherhood President, Kindergarten Director, Trustees, Staff Members (These to be nominated or
recommended by appropriate committees)
5% – All other church business meetings not specified above.

Percentages are those of resident membership – members that are in full and regular standing may
act and vote in transaction of church business.

E. For the purpose of electing workers for the church other than those listed in “D. Quorum”, 5% of the membership shall constitute a quorum and these may be voted upon at any regularly scheduled service without prior notice.

F. Business meetings shall be conducted as set forth in Robert’s Rules of Order.

 

ARTICLE VI – THE CHURCH COUNCIL

 

Section 1.

The Council, unless otherwise determined by vote of the church shall be composed of Pastor (who shall be chairman), Clerk, Treasurer, Music Director, Youth Director, Educational Director, Chairman of Deacons, and heads of each of the church organizations (Sunday School, Training Union, Women’s Missionary Union, Brotherhood, Kindergarten), and representatives of the congregations at large, appointed by the Pastor.

Section 2.

The Church Council, meeting regularly, shall seek to correlate and co-ordinate the activities and organizations of the entire church program and in so doing shall be charged with maintaining an annual church calendar. All matters agreed upon by the Council, calling for action not already provided for, shall be referred to the church for approval or disapproval.

 

ARTICLE VII – AMENDMENTS

 

This Constitution and accompanying By-Laws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of the resident members present and voting at any annual or monthly meeting of the church, or at a meeting specially called for that purpose, provided that announcement of the proposed revisions are made from the pulpit each Sunday for 30 days prior to any such meeting. No change shall be made in “Articles of Faith” and “Covenant” except by a two-thirds vote of all members of the church present entitled to vote, said proposed change having been laid before the church in writing at a business meeting not less than one month before the time of the proposed action, and read from the pulpit on the Lord’s Day next succeeding such proposal.

This Constitution and By-Laws is respectfully submitted to this church, its immediate adoption is suggested and further that these By-Laws be effective immediately after their adoption.

W.W. Christian, Chairman
Cliff Ryan
Lanier Bonner
Mrs. H.G. Bain
Mrs. L. Hubbard
Mrs. W.H. Shelley

Adopted March 29, 1967
ARTICLE II CHURCH OFFICERS Section 2 amended April 16, 1986

Amended February 16, 2011
Article II – Church Officers – Deacons
Section 3 – Number, Election, Terms of Service.

  Download Constitution & Bylaws (PDF)

6:1 Now in these days when the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint by the Hellenists arose against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution. And the twelve summoned the full number of the disciples and said, “It is not right that we should give up preaching the word of God to serve tables. Therefore, brothers, pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty. But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.” And what they said pleased the whole gathering, and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a proselyte of Antioch. These they set before the apostles, and they prayed and laid their hands on them. (ESV)

Deacons likewise must be dignified, not double-tongued, not addicted to much wine, not greedy for dishonest gain. They must hold the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 And let them also be tested first; then let them serve as deacons if they prove themselves blameless. 11 Their wives likewise must be dignified, not slanderers, but sober-minded, faithful in all things. 12 Let deacons each be the husband of one wife, managing their children and their own households well. 13 For those who serve well as deacons gain a good standing for themselves and also great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus. (ESV)