By Larry Booker
SECTION I. Eligibility:
Anyone believing in and accepting the Articles of Faith and Doctrine, and these by-laws, is eligible to membership in this church
SECTION II. Obligations:
As a member of the church, each one must accept the following obligations.
(1) To cleanse one’s self from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God. (2 Cor. 7:1). (Tobacco in any form is considered filthy).
(2) To conduct one’s self everywhere as becometh a Christian.
(3) To endeavor to manifest a spirit of brotherly love and fellowship toward all of God’s people.
(4) To forsake not attending service, as the manner of some is. (Heb. 10:25).
(5) To support the work of the church with one’s prayers and financial aid, as God gives the increase. (Mal. 3:10, 1 Cor. 16:2).
(6) To maintain family and secret devotion.
(7) To avoid all ungodly and worldly amusement (not all amusements and recreations are harmful), that one may be blameless and harmless amidst an evil generation and thus bring no reproach upon the name of Christ.
(8) To abide by the by-laws of the church as prescribed in this form of church government. (Titus 2:1-8, Heb. 13:17).
(9) We believe that to be born again one must repent (I John 1:9, 2 Cor. 7:10, Acts 2:38), and be baptized in water, by immersion, in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, thus making the believer eligible for the gift of the Holy Ghost. (Acts 2:38)
SECTION III. Kinds of Membership.
(1) Active Member:
(a) To be an active member one must be 18 years of age or older, have repented of their sins, and have been baptized in water, by immersion, in the name of Jesus Christ, and filled with the Holy Ghost; or earnestly seeking the Holy Ghost baptism, and living a clean, consistent Christian life.
(2) Junior Member:
(a) To be a junior member one must be 12 years of age or older, have repented of their sins, and have been baptized in water, by immersion, in the name of Jesus Christ, and filled with the Holy Ghost; or earnestly seeking the Holy Ghost baptism, and living a clean, consistent Christian life.
(b) A junior member shall have all the privileges of church membership, with the exception of voting and holding church office.
(c) The church Secretary shall make a list and keep a record of all members, both active and junior.
SECTION IV. Admission:
(1) There shall be a membership committee. Until and unless otherwise provided for, this committee shall consist of the Pastor and the Church Board.
(2) The duty of this committee shall be to receive, in writing on form cards or sheets, all new applications for church membership; to investigate, consider and pass on same. If accepted by said committee, the pastor shall then present the name of said applicant to the congregation, that the right hand of fellowship may be given the new member.
(3) To each member shall be given a personal membership card, to be retained by them as long as their membership is in force in this church. This card to be signed by the pastor and the Church Secretary.
(4) If, for any reason, said membership is discontinued, this card shall be returned to the Church Secretary.
SECTION V. Church Discipline:
(1) The membership committee shall decide and effect the dismissal of a member, should the need for such procedure arise.
(2) Any member failing or refusing, after the first and second admonitions, to keep the obligations and abide by the rules of the church may be automatically suspended (2 Thess. 3:6), or dealt with according to the following methods:
(a) If any member of this church be overtaken in a fault, he or she shall be dealt with according to Gal. 6:1, I John 5:16-17, and James 5:19-20.
(b) Any grievance arising between individual members of this church shall be dealt with according to Matt. 18:15-18. Should the accused be found guilty, they may be dis-fellowshipped from the church and their name dropped from the membership roll. This should be confirmed by a 2/3 vote of the church membership.
(1) Each officer elected or appointed, who fills said office faithfully and scripturally, shall be eligible as a candidate for re-election or re-appointment.
(2) No officer shall remain in office longer than the period for which he is elected or appointed; without being re-elected or re-appointed, except in cases where temporary extension of office is necessary until a successor can be found, qualified and duly elected or appointed.
(3) Election or appointment, re-election or re-appointment of officers must take place at a duly called business meeting of the church.
(4) The Church Board as defined in Paragraph 1 of Section 9 of this article, shall constitute a business quorum in preparing all business to be presented to the church, or in handling matters that do not need the attention and decision of the congregation as a whole.
SECTION II. Names of Offices:
(1) The offices of this church shall be:
(b) Assistant Pastor when and if such is needed.
(e) Sunday School Superintendent.
SECTION III. Eligibility:
(1) The pastor must have a good recommendation acceptable to the Church Board and the active members of the church.
(2) All other officers must be members in good standing, and have been with the church for at least one year. They must be at least twenty one years of age, and must have the baptism of the Holy Ghost.
SECTION IV. Pastor:
(1) The pastor shall be chosen and approved by the entire Church Board whose decision must have the endorsement of a 2/3 majority of the active members of the church to be legal and final.
(2) The pastor must be at least twenty one years of age, and must have been in the active ministry for at least three years. He must be an ordained minister of the gospel, and must have the baptism of the Holy Ghost according to Acts 2:4-38 and be baptized in Jesus Name.
(3) In case of misconduct by the pastor the Church Board shall take action as they deem best.
SECTION V. Resignation, Dismissal and Support of the Pastor:
(1) The church desiring to change pastors, shall give the pastor, through the church board, thirty days notice. By mutual agreement, between the pastor and the church board, the time may be changed.
(2) A pastor desiring to leave the church duly notifies the Church Board by giving thirty days notice. By mutual agreement, between the Pastor and the Church Board the time may be changed.
(3) After the Pastor is duly notified that the church desires to change pastors, or the Pastor duly notifies the Church Board that he desires to discontinue his service with said church; there shall be no changes made in the by-laws, membership roll, or officers until this matter is duly settled.
(4) The Pastor’s support shall be such as he and the church shall agree upon through the Board of the church. (Luke 10:7, 1 Cor. 9:7-14). NOTE: See Article V, Business, Section 3.
SECTION VI. Duties of the Pastor:
(1) To preach and teach the Word as God gives him ability.
(2) To visit and pray for the sick.
(3) To encourage the weak.
(4) To reprove and warn the unruly and to co-operate with the Church Board in dismissing members if necessary, after due admonition has been given them.
(5) To give advice as needed, and be ready to every good work. (I Thess. 5:14, II Tim. 4:1-2).
SECTION VII. The Pastor’s Authority:
(1) He shall have the oversight and superintendence of all spiritual interests of the church and of all departments of its work, not as lord over God’s heritage, but as a feeder of the flock of God, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind (I Peter 5:2-3), inasmuch as he is responsible for the guardianship and watch-care or all who are committed to his trust.
(2) He shall be consulted in regard to all business of any importance pertaining to the spiritual, moral and material affairs of the church.
(3) He or the majority of the Church Board may call for Board Meetings with three (3) days notice. The Pastor may preside over business and Church Board meetings, and shall, with the approval of the Church Board appoint committees.
(4) In case of a serious disagreement, between the Pastor and a majority of the Church Board, on the policy and government of the church; the matter shall be submitted to the membership of the church, at a duly called business meeting, for their voice and a final decision in the matter. The Pastor and a spokesman for the majority of the Board members will be allowed to speak and present their viewpoints. After needed discussion the decision shall be made by a majority vote of the active members of the Church. Voting shall be by secret ballot. The Church Board shall appoint
one of its members to preside at such a meeting. A majority of the Church Board may call for and announce such a meeting.
SECTION VIII. Assistant Pastor:
(1) The Assistant Pastor shall be appointed by the Pastor and approved by the Church Board and a majority of the membership by Secret Ballot.
(2) His duties shall be to assist the Pastor in all matters as directed by the Pastor.
SECTION IX. Church Board:
(1) The Church Board shall consist of seven elected members from which the church corporation President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer will be selected. The Pastor or Assistant Pastor, in Pastor’s absence, shall be Ex-officio Chairman of the Church Board. The seven Board members shall be elected for a term of three years with a maximum of two consecutive terms. Board members serve on a staggered term basis with no more than three members being elected at any annual business meeting. Pastor shall have the authority to appoint Honorary Board Members. These appointments shall have a voice but will not have a vote.
(2) The Church Board shall care for, look after and execute the business affairs of the Church, submitting, except where other-wise provided for, all transactions to the Church for its approval or disapproval.
(3) It shall be the duty of the Church Board to look after all repairs, upkeep and improvements on the property of the church; including remodeling or enlarging of present building or he erection of new one.
(4) In case of a vacancy in the pastorate, the Church Board shall, by majority vote, elect one of its members to conduct a business meeting of the Church to choose a Pastor or transact other necessary business. (Acts 6:2-3, Romans 12:11).
SECTION X. Secretary and Treasurer:
(1) The Secretary and Treasurer may be one and the same person.
(2) They shall be elected by a majority vote of the Church Board for a term of three years and may be re-elected to succeed himself.
(3) His or her duties as Secretary shall be to take minutes and to preserve records of business proceedings, and to care for all records and papers belonging to the Church.
(4) His or her duties as Treasurer shall be to receive and care for all funds of the Church and make all disbursements, and keep an accurate record of all such transactions.
(5) The Church Board may call for quarterly or annual reports, from the Treasurer, and may have the books audited once each year if so desired.
(6) The Church Board shall approve all bills in excess of $500.00 before the Treasurer shall pay them, with the exception of such regular bills as salaries, light, water, fuel and janitor bills. All bills shall be paid by check. No expenditure in excess of $2,000.00 shall be made without authorization of a majority of the active membership of the Church.
SECTION XI. Ushers:
(1) In the church services they shall welcome and seat the people, and wait on the congregation for the various offerings as they are taken. They shall also distribute song books and whatever literature may be pertinent to the worship service.
(2) In the Sunday School they shall distribute the literature and song books, also welcome and conduct visitors and new-comers to their respective classes.
(3) The ushers shall be appointed by the Pastor and approved by the Church Board for a term of one year. The quality, age and ability of the ushers shall be left to the discretion of the Pastor. As many ushers may be appointed to serve, at a time, as are needed to efficiently care for this service.
(1) If at any time the Church decides to purchase or dispose of property (real estate or buildings) the Pastor and the Church Board shall look after the business matters and present their views to the Church. The matter shall finally be decided by a majority vote of the Church.
(2) Title to the property shall be in the name of the church. The property shall be held in trust by the corporation.
SECTION 1. Sunday School:
(1) This church shall organize and maintain a Sunday School, with suitable classes and departments for all ages.
(2) It shall be financed by offerings received regularly in each class, and by any other means, regular or periodic, which, by the Pastor, Superintendent and Church Board, may be deemed proper and necessary.
Its Officers shall be:
(1) A Superintendent.
(a) The Superintendent shall be a person qualified by proper age and ability to be duly interested in the promotion, quality, and success of the school.
(b) The Superintendent shall have the oversight and direction of all departments of the Sunday School. He shall work under the direction of, and in cooperation with the Pastor and the Church Board.
(c) The Superintendent shall be appointed by the Pastor and approved by the Church Board.
(2) Assistant Superintendent.
(a) If it is thought necessary the school may have an Assistant Superintendent He must be qualified by age, ability, and due interest in the work in order that he may be a proper assistant.
(b) The Superintendent may offer a nomination for the Assistant Superintendent, if he so desires, however, the Pastor will appoint the Assistant with ratification of the Church Board.
(a) The Secretary and Treasurer may be one and the same person.
(b) The Secretary-Treasurer of the Sunday School must be capable and trustworthy, and of suitable age and maturity to be responsible and diligent in this office, and in the careful handling of all monies intrusted to them.
(c) The Superintendent may offer a nomination for the Secretary-Treasurer, if he so desires, however, the Pastor will appoint the Secretary-Treasurer with ratification of the Church Board.
(d) The duties of this office shall be to prepare and keep all records pertaining to the Sunday School, and to receive, care for, and disburse all monies, belonging to the Sunday School department.
(e) Disbursement of Sunday School funds shall be made, only, at the direction of the Pastor and Superintendent. All disbursements shall be by check.
(a) Suitable teachers shall be appointed for each class and department. They are appointed at the discretion of the Pastor and the Superintendent.
(5) New Departments.
(a) New departments may be created and new officers added as the need arises. All this however shall be left to the judgment and action of the Pastor and the Superintendent.
SECTION II. Young People’s Department:
(1) This church may create and maintain a department known as The Young People’s Society.
(1) Its officers shall be President, an Assistant or Vice-President, if necessary, and a Secretary-Treasurer.
(1) The duties of the President shall be to preside over, plan, and conduct the services and work of the young people.
(2) The duties of the Vice-President shall be to assist the President in the work, as directed by the President.
(3) The duties of the Secretary-Treasurer shall be to prepare and keep all records pertinent to this society; and to receive, care for, and disburse all monies of this society, under the direction of the President, and with the approval of this society. The President being finally amenable to the Pastor and the Church Board.
(4) All officers of this society shall be chosen from its membership. They must be suitable, clean, Christian young people; and must have the approval of the Pastor and the Church Board, before being placed in office; if there is any question about their suitability and qualifications spiritually or morally.
(5) These officers shall be elected by a majority vote of the society.
(6) Advisors to assist youth. The Pastor and youth agree.
(1) The purpose of this society shall be to provide opportunity for devotion, instruction, and expression for the young people of the Church. With major emphasis being placed on Christian development and service.
(2) The place and time of the services of this society shall be decided by them; with the consent and approval of the Pastor and the Church Board.
(3) This work shall be financed by offerings taken in their own meetings, and by any other means considered proper for such a society.
(4) Members of this society shall consist of young people between the approximate ages of twelve and twenty-five years, or by mutual consent, may be changed if the need arises.
(5) The entire Young People’s Society shall be under the final direction of the Pastor. If at any time he feels it necessary and sees fit to take over the Presidency, temporarily, to effect some desired correction or to give the work some needed help; he may do so after first counseling with the Church Board, and receiving their approval.
(1) A business meeting of the Church must be announced publicly in at least three regular services; the first announcement being nine days previous to the meeting date. This constitutes a duly called or legal business meeting. Provided, that the regular annual meeting of the Church shall be held on the first Tuesday in June of each year, at the hour of 7:30 P.M. of said day.
(2) A special business meeting of the Church may be called by the Pastor any time he deems it necessary, by observing the rule given in paragraph one. In emergencies the time of announcement may be shortened to meet the need, by agreement between the Pastor and the Church Board.
(3) An official meeting of the Church Board may be called by the Pastor with three days prior notice to the Board members. Time may be shortened in an emergency to meet the need.
(4) Minutes of the previous meeting may be called for, read and adopted, or corrected and adopted, at each business meeting, whether of the Board, or of the Church. Copies of the minutes for any Board member will be made available upon request by that member.
(5) Upon the approval of and after due examination or investigating by the Membership Committee (see Section IV, Article 1, Title: Admission) Christian Workers License may be issued to those who apply; feeling their call to the ministry, if their life and conduct is becoming of a true Christian, and their qualifications seem to justify this recognition.
(6) Current bills such as: janitor bills, supplies, monthly payments n installment purchases, and Pastor’s salary, light bills, fuel bills, phone bills or any other bills connected with current operating expenses; do not need to be presented each time to the congregation for its approval, as its standing approval is already given on those things.
(7) The Church year shall be a fiscal year: from June first to May thirty-first.
SECTION II. Voting:
(1) All voting shall be by secret ballot.
(2) All nominations must be made in writing.
(3) Only those who are active members of this church shall have a right to vote, and must be eighteen years of age or older.
(4) In and for the Young People’s Society only, the voting age begins at twelve years, which is in keeping with their membership age.
(5) A majority vote of the members present at any legal business session shall be the deciding factor.
(6) By a “majority vote” a simple majority is meant, unless otherwise stated. (I.E. Pastoral vote would require a 2/3 majority.)
SECTION III. Finance:
(1) The financial plan of this Church shall be tithes and offerings. If however, from time to time it shall be agreed upon by the Pastor and the Church Board; to use other, right and legitimate means, also to help build the finances of the church, or any specified department of this church, it shall be permissible.
(2) Any tithes or offerings handed to the Pastor by members of the Church or non-members of the Church shall, by him, be turned over to the church Secretary-Treasurer. Any money given the Pastor for his personal use shall become the personal property of the Pastor. No special offering designated for another purpose shall be divided with the Pastor. (See Article II, Section V, Paragraph 4.) (I.E. Building Fund, Evangelistic Crusade, etc.)
(3) Any project involving $2,000.00 (Two Thousand Dollars) or more shall be submitted to the Church Board for ratification before being consummated by the majority vote of the Active Church membership.
SECTION I. Conclusion:
(1) No department of this Church shall be independent of the Church, but the officers and functions of every department are an intregal part of the Church, and its work as a whole, and must at all times cooperate with, and be under the final direction of the Pastor and the Church Board.
(1) by-laws of this Church may be adopted, amended or repealed by the Secret Ballot vote of active church members. A 2/3 majority vote is required to ratify any proposed changes.
(The above material was published by the Pentecostal Lighthouse.)
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