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Church Constitution

Desmond Ford. Rabbi Rami Shapiro. Israel Only. Tim Liwanag. The Holy Land for Christian Travelers. John A. My Kind of Preaching. Alain Walljee. Alan Toms. Any member who has not attended the services of the church and supported the work of the church with some degree of regularity for a three month period, provided they are not hindered by sickness or disability from doing so, shall be placed on an Inactive Members list and become the object of special prayer and Christian concern with the intent of restoring fellowship with the church body.

The church shall be notified of those that the pastor and deacons have placed on the Inactive Members list and shall be asked to pray for and play an active role in seeking to restore the Inactive Members. An Inactive Member may be restored to Regular Membership by giving satisfactory evidence, over the course of three months, of a repentant attitude and a renewed interest in the life of the church.

Full privileges of membership may be restored by action of the pastor and deacons with notification to the church. See Section 5, E. The membership rolls of this church shall be regularly reviewed by the pastor and deacons. Membership may be ended in the following ways:. Written Request: A member in good standing will be removed from the membership rolls upon written notification of their membership in a church of like faith and practice, or written notification of their intent to join another church of like faith and practice.

Withdrawal on Matters of Conscience: Any member who for matters of conscience can no longer whole heartedly support this church in its doctrine or covenant or biblical stand on issues of life and ministry may submit a notice in writing to the pastor and deacons explaining his or her change of position. It shall be the duty of the pastor and deacons to make diligent inquiry into the position of the member.

This shall not be permitted as a means to avoid any necessary church discipline. The officers may make a recommendation to the church for the member to be removed from the roll in such cases. Relocation: When a member moves out of our ministry area and can no longer fulfill membership responsibilities, the pastor and deacons may recommend that the church remove their membership and encourage them to unite with a church of like faith and practice as agreed to in our Church Covenant.

Inactivity: When a member has been on the inactive list for at least three months without adequate reason given for their inactivity and have not responded to restoration efforts, the pastor and deacons may present a recommendation to the church to remove their membership. Membership in Another Church: When it becomes known that a member has placed their membership in another church they will be removed from membership of Berean Baptist Church, and notification will be given to the church.

Formative Discipline: Let it be understood by all that one of the primary ministries of this church is the formative discipline of the public and private instruction of the Word of God with its application to daily life and public worship. This instruction is the responsibility of the church as a whole Eph. This application of spiritual discipline and teaching should be the most prevalent and common discipline in this church and in our homes.

This becomes necessary when a member of the body fails to positively respond to the formative discipline of the church. The purpose of corrective discipline shall include the restoration of the erring brother 1 Cor. The Process of Church Discipline: In the discipline process we will conform to the pattern of Matthew This includes:. Private Reproof Matt. Private Confrontation Matt. Pastor and Deacon Involvement Matt. Public Announcement Matt. Public Exclusion Matt. A church hearing will take place at a special or regular meeting of the church.

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The member being considered for dismissal is permitted to attend and to speak in turn. The decision of the membership by majority vote will be considered final. A dismissed member giving satisfactory evidence of being penitent may be restored to membership. That evidence will include a public testimony of confession before the congregation at a regular meeting or service of the church. This process will continue to the church hearing even if a resignation of membership has been tendered, if there is no evidence of true repentance.

Use of This Process. This process will also be the pattern for dealing with personal disputes between members in harmony with 1 Cor. We believe that Christians are prohibited from bringing civil lawsuits against other Christians or against the local church to resolve personal disputes. We believe the church possesses the resources necessary to resolve personal disputes between members. Those services shall generally include an organized time of biblical instruction for all ages, and a morning and evening worship service. A weeknight service shall be held each week for the purpose of supporting this ministry in prayer.

It shall be incumbent upon each member to make sincere effort to attend all of these services as often as possible. Other services shall be held as deemed appropriate by the pastor for purposes consistent with the objectives of this church. Exceptions to this plan shall be allowed with careful consideration for occasional events and holidays. All services shall be under the direction of the pastor with the assistance of the deacons and others as requested by the pastor.

Annual Meeting: An Annual Meeting of the church shall be held in January, the date and time to be determined by the pastor and deacons. The Annual Meeting shall involve a review of the purposes of the church, a review of the ministry of the past year, and a preparation for the year of ministry ahead.

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The church shall adopt an annual church budget for the calendar year and fill the church offices and service positions that are presented by the nominating committee. The budget shall be proposed by the pastor and deacons and shall be posted or provided to the church for the two Sundays prior to the meeting. The nominating committee shall post a ballot of the positions which need to be filled along with qualified nominees for those positions at least two Sundays prior to the Annual Meeting.

Quarterly Meetings: Three quarterly church meetings shall be held in April, July, and October or at such other dates as determined by the biblical officers. Special Meetings: Other meetings may be called at any time by the pastor, the deacons, or by a written request to the chairman of the deacons signed by not less than seven 7 voting members of the church. In the event that less than a quorum is present, the biblical officers shall determine a later date for the meeting.

No business may be acted upon without a quorum present. Moderator: The moderator of church meetings shall be the pastor of the church. In his absence or on occasion when appropriate, he may request first the chairman of the deacons or another of the deacons to serve as the moderator. This moderating function of the pastor shall not prevent him from fulfilling his shepherding role in directing the decisions of the church or from expressing his views on the items being discussed.

Procedures for the Meetings: The intent of the business meetings will be that the majority rules and that the minority is given an opportunity to present their views. A spirit of grace and unity shall prevail at the church meetings. General parliamentary procedure shall be followed without overemphasis on minor technicalities. All matters of disagreement over motions, seconds, procedures, lengths of discussions, etc.

Items to be voted upon at any meeting must first have a motion and then a second in order to be discussed. All matters are then passed by a majority vote, unless otherwise indicated in the Constitution. Results of all votes shall be announced at the meeting and recorded in the minutes by the church clerk. Items for business that are presented from the pastor and deacons by a majority vote of the deacons may be presented on the floor of the meetings by reading.

Such a reading shall constitute a motion. Support from the floor will place the motion in discussion. The pastor and deacons reserve the right, at any meeting, to hold any motion from the floor for further consideration by the biblical officers. Such items are to be announced at the meeting as being primarily for discussion. Following the formation of the church, the church shall establish, by majority vote, a brief guide to parliamentary procedure for church meetings. A process for amending that procedure shall be included.

That procedure shall be normative for all church business to be conducted. General: All elected or appointed officers of the church shall be active members of the church for a period of at least one year prior to being elected, except in the calling of a pastor or other staff, and except in the first election year in the church. A non-member may not serve in any elected or appointed office in the church.

No member shall be eligible to hold an office unless he has reached the age of twenty-five 25 years, except assisting pastors. All elections for officers shall be held by written ballot and shall require a majority vote of the voting members present at the meeting unless otherwise indicated in this Constitution. All elected officers, except for the pastor s , shall begin their service upon the adjournment of the annual meeting.

For the Pastor: The pastor shall be an ordained or licensed Baptist minister, subscribing without reservation to this Constitution with its Statement of Faith and Church Covenant, and displaying the personal qualifications for the office of pastor as described in 1 Timothy and Titus For the Deacons: The deacons shall be men who demonstrate a willingness to serve the church in support of the work of the gospel ministry, and who display the personal qualifications as described in 1 Timothy and Acts Therefore, those men only may be elected to office who have remained faithfully married to their only wife, possibly including those who have been widowed or widowed and remarried.

The Pastor: When a vacancy occurs in the senior pastorate, the deacons shall elect a pulpit committee consisting of three deacons with the addition of one member at large for each 50 voting members. The chairman of the Pulpit Committee shall be one of the deacons and shall be appointed by the deacons. The duty of this committee shall be to seek a suitable pastor and to labor with him to relocate him to the area for ministry. The church shall, whenever possible, seek to elect from among themselves a man who is qualified and prepared to assume the role of the pastor.

The pastor will serve until he terminates his office by resignation. The pastor must give a minimum of thirty 30 days notice to the deacons before the termination of his services. The pastor shall receive his salary for at least thirty 30 days. The pastor will receive a minimum of thirty 30 days notice if the church terminates his services. The pastor shall receive his salary for at least those 30 days. The Office of Deacon: The nominating committee shall present a ballot to the church each year at the Annual Meeting, which shall include qualified nominees for the office of deacon and their term of service.

The church shall endeavor to keep four 4 deacons actively in office at all times with the addition of one deacon for every fifty 50 voting members over members. The deacons shall be elected to a term of three years, which terms shall alternate.

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Upon the formation of the church, the first election shall include 4 deacons. By drawing lots the terms shall be determined as one 1 term of one 1 year, one 1 term of two 2 years, and two 2 terms of three 3 years. Any deacon failing to fulfill his responsibilities of office or falling into disqualification for office will come under the standard discipline process of the church. If appropriate he may be dismissed from office at any church business meeting by a majority vote of those present and voting.

Other Officers: Other officers, as indicated in this section, as later deemed appropriate by the church, or as required by law, will be elected by majority vote to terms of two years. Elections of candidates for office shall be held at the Annual Meeting of the church based upon a ballot presented by the nominating committee. Any officer failing to fulfill his responsibilities of office or falling into disqualification for office will come under the standard discipline process of the church.

If appropriate, he may be dismissed from that office at any church business meeting by a majority vote of those present and voting. Vacancies: If a vacancy occurs in an office of the church, the pastor and deacons may recommend a qualified person to complete the term of office. Such a recommendation may be presented to the church at any church meeting shall be approved by a majority vote.

The deacons, pastor, and treasurer of Berean Baptist Church shall be the officers and trustees of the church for matters of the state and legal purposes which require such titles or functions. In the event that such offices are needed, the pastor and deacons shall assign and designate the specific titles and functions of these officers.

Pastoral: The pastor shall have oversight of the spiritual welfare of the church. He shall give himself to prayer and the ministry of the Word of God after the apostolic example of Acts 6. He shall seek to fulfill the spirit of those Scriptural passages that describe the life and work of those whom God appoints to care for His people in the New Testament era e. Acts , 28; Eph. The pastor shall have responsibility for the stated services of the church, shall be moderator of all meetings of the deacons and of the church family, except for meetings on his dismissal, salary, etc.

The senior pastor shall have supervision of all volunteer and paid personnel of the church and its ministries and shall be responsible, with the counsel of the deacons, for final determinations in the hiring, managing and dismissing of those personnel. As the shepherd, the pastor will exercise careful watch over the souls of the flock Hebrews ; 1 Pet.

Deacons: The deacons shall assist the pastor in the administration and spiritual welfare of the church, and shall participate with the pastor in the consideration of all applicants for church membership. They shall assist the pastor in matters of discipline in accordance with this Constitution and shall assist in the care of the sick, distressed, or widowed members of the church. The pastor and deacons shall prepare a proposed annual budget to present to the church at the Annual Meeting.

The pastor and deacons may request the participation of financial officers of the church to consult in the budget process. The deacons shall meet monthly if possible, shall elect their own officers at the first meeting of the year Chairman, Vice-Chairman, and Secretary , and shall vote on matters of business to take to the floor of the church meetings.


They shall be responsible for the supply of preachers for the pulpit when there is no senior pastor. Church Clerk: The clerk shall keep an accurate and permanent record of all church family meetings, keep records of baptisms, maintain a membership register in which shall be noted such changes as occur, give notice of special church family meetings, and perform such other duties as prescribed.

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Treasurer: The treasurer shall receive and disburse all monies as directed by the church, maintaining clear, accurate, and permanent record of all receipts and disbursements and present quarterly and annual financial reports to the church. Financial Secretary: The financial secretary shall keep a confidential record of the tithes and offerings of all donors and issue an annual receipt and such other periodic receipts as may be requested to those donors.

Other officers and specific service areas may be appointed from time to time by the pastor and deacons. Those duties and appointments will be presented at the next church meeting for the majority approval of the church. The nominating committee shall be appointed by the deacons in December for the purpose of recommending to the church a ballot of qualified nominees.

Our Church Constitution

The committee shall consist of the pastor, the chairman of the deacons, with one other deacon. There shall also be one other member of the church for every 50 voting members of the church, which nominating committee member shall not be in the immediate families of any existing officer of the church.

The church has the right under the authority and direction of the pastor to establish church ministries which are intended to further the purposes of this church. Such ministries will be accountable to the church through the pastor with respect to their programs, operations, materials, choice of speakers, etc. All such ministries will be under the authority of the church, and will operate within the framework and spirit of the Church Constitution.

All finances of such ministries will be accountable through the financial officers and general budget of the church. Individual areas of ministry will not separately support missionaries or any other ministries. Ministries may be dissolved by the biblical officers when, in their opinion, the purpose of the ministry has been fulfilled, the changing character of the church or of the community has rendered the ministry unnecessary or the ministry is no longer consistent with the purpose of the church.

The church will not use means such as raffles, suppers, rummage sales, games or entertainment to fund its ministries. Gifts from sources outside our local church will be evaluated by the deacons prior to acceptance. Government funding of our ministries and gifts known to be from questionable or immoral practices such as gambling will not be accepted.

The church shall function with a single treasury with all funds being disbursed by check from that treasury. Designation of spending will be through an annual church budget adopted by corporate act of the church at the Annual Meeting and revised by any other subsequent corporate acts. The pastor and deacons have the authority to act outside the adopted budget in a manner they deem wise, not to exceed the amount designated by church action. Undesignated gifts to the church treasury of regular systematic giving is encouraged as the Scriptural plan.

Designated giving to corporately agreed upon matters will be accepted. Designated giving to projects, missions, organizations, or individuals other than those corporately adopted will be handled at the discretion of the deacons. All such designations are non-binding suggestions only, and do not constitute a fiduciary trust obligation.

These Articles of Organization were adopted by the body of like minded believers on October 31, at a special meeting of the Berean Baptist Church, calling themselves together in order to establish and form a separatist testimony for Christ in the greater Lafayette area. In the event of dissolution of the church, all of its debts shall be fully satisfied. None of its assets or holdings shall be divided among the members or other individuals, but shall be irrevocably designated by corporate vote prior to dissolution to fundamental Baptist mission agencies or organizations which are in agreement with the Doctrinal Statement of this church and in conformity with the United States Internal Revenue Service Code of section C No substantial part of the activities of this church shall be the carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation, and the church shall not participate in or intervene in including the publishing or distribution of statements , any political campaign on behalf of any candidate for public office.

This statement shall not be construed to prevent any member of this church from fulfilling his duties and rights as a citizen of his community, state, or nation. Further, this statement shall not be construed to prevent exposition and application of biblical truth associated with contemporary issues. This church does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, or national and ethnic origin.

Born again, baptized believers of any race, color, or national and ethnic origin who are in agreement with these Articles of Organization will receive all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally afforded or made available to any of its members. If questions arise in regard to the interpretation and application of these Articles of Organization, the decision of the pastor and deacons will be considered the final authority. Participation in the service ministries of this church shall be limited to church members in good standing with the following exceptions:.

By Invitation. For Outreach. Non members may participate in service ministries if approved by the pastor and deacons for outreach purposes in a legitimate attempt to influence the non member for Christ and a commitment to membership in the local church. Articles of Organization Including the Articles of Faith and the Church Covenant Preamble Entrusting our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ for our salvation and accepting the Holy Scriptures as our sole and perfect rule of faith and practice, we assemble ourselves together as a body of baptized believers in Jesus Christ and adopt these articles for our government and plan of worship.

Section 2 Declaration of Intent The purpose of forming this independent church is to provide a place of worship where born again, Bible-believing people will be fed the Word of God in a congenial atmosphere; where sinners will be welcome but miserable until they make things right with the Lord; where the pastors, Sunday school teachers, deacons, and all other church leaders are united in thought and effort in growing in the Faith 2 Pet. Section 3 Character of Government The government of this church shall be vested in the authority of its membership in the New Testament pattern.

Section 2 The Godhead We believe in the one Triune God, who is infinite Spirit, the Maker and supreme Ruler of heaven and earth, inexpressibly glorious in holiness, and worthy of all possible honor, confidence and love; that He is eternally existing in three persons --the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, each equal in every divine perfection, nature, power, and glory, and executing distinct but harmonious offices in the great work of redemption Ex.

Section 5 The Creation, The Creation and Fall of Man We believe in the direct creation by God of the physical universe, of all spirit beings, of man, and of all other forms of life, without the process of evolution, accomplished in six literal, twenty-four hour days. Section 6 Salvation We believe salvation to be by grace through faith, wholly apart from human works and merit, and that each individual must exercise personal faith in the redeeming work of Christ in order to be saved.