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Our Constitution

This Constitution is subservient to the teaching of the Bible.  The Bible shall always be our final authority as expressed in our Statement of Faith.  

ARTICLE 1 – NAME

(A)  The name of this church and congregation is Sovereign Grace Bible Church, Redondo Beach, California.

ARTICLE 2 – THE CHURCH  

In Scripture, the church is seen not only as the body of Christ of which He alone is the Head, but also the beloved of the Lord, the demonstration ground of the grace of God, the place of His glory, the treasure house of His Word, the flock of His blood-bought sheep and lambs, the fellowship of His saints, and also His own beloved family.  A local church is this in miniature, a microcosm of the whole family in heaven and on earth.  As a family, its fellowship comprises of those born of God, regardless of diversity of age, nationality, culture, or experience.  Together with incalculable privileges and real joys, a local church has standards, authority, disciplines, and order under the Headship of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Every Christian believer who is born of God and who is justified freely by grace through faith in Christ should be an active, faithful member of a Bible-believing, Bible teaching, local church with whose doctrine and practice he/she is in full agreement.

Acts 2:47; Acts 20:28–30; Eph.1:22–23; Eph.3:10; Eph.4:11 – 16:1 Tim.3:15;
1 Pet.5:2; 1 Jn.3:1

The church is equipped and empowered by the Lord Jesus Christ through His Spirit to take the message of salvation to a fallen world.  We recognize our responsibility to use our gifts and talents and resources to reach as many individuals and people groups by all means that are consistent with the teaching of the Bible.  The church is also committed to prayerfully supporting missionaries who are faithful to the gospel of Christ, giving precedence to those who are engaged in church planting and Bible translation ministries.

Matt.28:18–20; Mk.16:15; Lk.24:45–48; Jn. 20:21; Acts 1:8; Acts 8:4; 
Rom.1:14-17; 1 Cor. 1:18–31; Col.1:28; Rev.7:9–10

ARTICLE 3 – PURPOSE  

The purpose of this church is to glorify Him who is the living and true God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit:

  • Through worship
  • Through preaching, teaching and our obedience to the Word of God (the Bible)
  • Through being witnesses to the Lord Jesus Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit in Redondo Beach, the greater south bay area, and to the ends of the earth.

ARTICLE 4 – MEMBERSHIP

Membership shall be for all those who have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit, have believed in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and demonstrate a life which is lived to the praise of the glory of God’s grace.  It is also required of all members that they subscribe without any reservation to the church Statement of Faith and Constitution as derived from Scripture.  Those applying for church membership shall complete a membership application and be interviewed by one or two of the elders following which a report shall be submitted to the full Board of Elders.  It is recommended that those applying for membership be at least eighteen years of age at the time of application.  The elders, if satisfied with the applicant’s qualifications shall propose that the person/persons be elected to membership by the members of the church.  No membership quorum is required for such elections.

Members are exhorted and encouraged to be committed to the sanctity of the Lord’s Day in their personal and family life including the conscientious participation in the worship services of the Lord’s Day and the Lord’s Supper.

Gen. 2:1–3; Ex. 20:8-11; Isa. 58:13–14; Rev. 1:10; Acts 2:42; Heb.10:25

It is expected of members that they make a willing commitment to the work of the Lord Jesus, the furtherance of the gospel of Christ, the building up and caring for His church both at home and abroad, in such manner that the elders may say of them, that they first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God.

2 Cor. 8:5; Eph.4:12–13

Members shall cultivate a life of holiness, humility, love, likemindedness, unity, and a spirit of service within the church and before the world.

1 Pet.1:15–16; Phil. 2:5–8; Jn. 15:12; 1 Cor.1:10; 2 Cor.4:5-6; Matt. 5:16

Members are to commit themselves practically to be faithful stewards of temporal things, such as time, energies and possessions, that these might be used in and through the church to the glory of God.  We believe it to be the pattern of Scripture seen in the storehouse tithing of the Old Testament and the giving in the New Testament church that all giving should generally be through the church.  All members are exhorted in Scripture to give to the support of the ministries of the church, including missions, as each one purposes in his/her heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.  And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have abundance for every good work.

Lev.27:30; Mal.3:10; 1 Cor.16:1-2; 2 Cor. 8 & 9

Members shall recognize those whom the Lord has established as the spiritual leaders of the church (pastors and elders) and willingly commit themselves to their oversight.  Scripture teaches, “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account.  Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you” Heb.13: 17 (ESV).

See also 1 Thess. 5:12–13

No person whose life openly contradicts the saving grace of God and the teaching of the Word of God shall be eligible for membership in this church.  

Anyone who becomes a member but whose life is later seen to be lived contrary to the teaching of Scripture will be counseled by the pastor and or one or two elders with the hope and intention of effecting repentance.  If the person refuses to repent, the individual’s name and way of life will be brought by the elders before a meeting of the church with the recommendation that he/she be removed from the membership of the church as an act of Biblical discipline, and the members encouraged to pray for the person and to seek every opportunity to bring the person back to the Lord and to the fellowship of the church.

Matt.18:15–20; 1 Cor.5:1–13; 2 Cor.2:1–8; Titus 3:9–11 

A Christian having joined the church and who later finds himself/ herself in disagreement with either the church Statement of Faith and or the Constitution shall inform the elders of their disagreement and seek to quietly withdraw his/her membership from the church.

A member who has been in good standing in the church and who for personal reasons desires to unite with another church may apply to the elders for a letter of good standing, which may be granted by the elders.

A member who has been disciplined by the removal of his/her membership from the church may be restored to the fellowship of the church once it has been established that true repentance has occurred.  Such restoration shall follow the regular procedure of an application for membership with the addition of a written statement of repentance concerning the discipline issue.  

 ARTICLE 5 – CHURCH GOVERNMENT

(A)  The Head of this church is the Lord Jesus Christ who rules His church by means of His Spirit and His Word.  The care, oversight and the directing of the affairs of this church are entrusted by the members to the elders or overseers (the designations are interchangeable), who shall be men (male) chosen by the members in accord with the qualifications given by Christ in His Word.  In all their ministries the elders shall be accountable to the Lord Jesus Christ.  The elders shall not have authority to change or amend the Constitution and/or Bylaws of the church; to call or dismiss the pastor/teacher; acquire or dispose of real property, and approve and change the annual budget without the consent of at least 2/3rds of the members present at a meeting called and gathered for that specified purpose.  The elders shall also bring to the consideration of the members any matters which they consider advisable, seeking their cooperation.

ARTICLE 6 – CHURCH ORDER

We recognize that the New Testament provides for a twofold ministry within the church.

The Elders:  A term interchangeable with overseers, bishops, and presbyters, have the “oversight” of the church.

The Deacons: The deacons conduct the social and temporal affairs of the church, and are responsible in this work to the elders.

Phil.1:1; Acts 20:17, 28; Titus 1:5, 7; 1 Pet.5:1-2; Acts 6:1–4; 1 Tim.3:1-15

There is no suggestion here that ministry is limited to the elders and deacons alone.  Rather, we see the elders having a ministry to the church; the deacons having a ministry for the church, and the witness of every believer a ministry of the church.

Above all we acknowledge the pre-eminence of the Lord Jesus Christ in the church.  He is building His church.  He is the Lord of the church, and He dwells amongst His people and leads by means of His Spirit and Word.    

ARTICLE 7 – THE ELDERS  

The elders, who in accordance with historic congregational government (The Savoy Declaration 1658), shall be voted on by the members.  Their election requires a 2/3rds majority of those voting, though of course complete unanimity is desired.  The elders have authority delegated to them by the members of the church, but are responsible in their ministry to Jesus Christ, the Head of the church.  To the elders has been committed the responsibility for the spiritual, doctrinal, moral and ethical well-being of the church.

Matt. 16:18; Col. 1:18; Rev. 1:13, 20; Acts 20:28

Being answerable as stewards to the Lord of the household, and as under-shepherds to the Chief Shepherd of the flock, the elders will have to assume the burden of decisions that cannot be shared with others, such as the details of their pastoral ministry.  Nor may they shun such things, whether in the interest of sound Biblical doctrine or the purity and wellbeing of the church.  They must at these times turn to the teaching of the Bible with a child-like simplicity of heart and purpose, looking to the Lord Jesus for wisdom, courage, and grace, and relying also on the prayers, love, sympathy, and confidence of the members of the church.

1 Pet.5:1–4

Qualifications for Elders:  The elders (plural) shall be men (male), qualified by the Holy Spirit to oversee and nurture the church, recognized as such by the existing elders and the members of the church.  They shall be elected and set apart to this office at a meeting of the members.  Their character and conduct must be in accord with the clear teaching and principles laid down in the Bible.  They shall be men who are faithful to the Lord Jesus Christ in doctrine and life.  Because the gifts and calling of God are irrevocable, elders shall exercise their office with no term limits.  However, any elder who disqualifies himself either through doctrinal deviation or moral depravity and the matter is established on the testimony of two or three witnesses shall be rebuked by the other elders with the intent of effecting repentance. He shall also be removed from his office with immediate effect.  Those who refuse to repent will be excommunicated from the church by a majority vote of the members, if and until true repentance is effected to the satisfaction of the elders and the church.  Those restored to the fellowship of the church shall not be eligible to be considered as elders for a minimum period of two years.  An elder may also choose to step down from his ministry if for personal reasons he feels he is unable to fulfill his responsibilities.

Titus 1:5–9; 1 Tim. 3:1–7; Acts 13:1–2; Acts 20:28; Rom. 11:29; 
1 Tim. 5:19–20

Functions:  The elders shall oversee and direct the affairs of the church, not domineering over those entrusted to their care, but being examples to the flock.

1 Tim. 5:17; 1 Pet. 5:1–2

They have both the authority and the responsibility to safeguard the purity of doctrine and that of maintaining the discipline of the church.  Their authority and responsibility is Biblical and is to be exercised without partiality and in love and with firmness.

Titus 1:9; Acts 20:28–31; Heb. 13:17

Because of the nature and importance of their ministry, the elders are to depend on the love, confidence, and prayers of the church.  1 Thess. 5: 12 – 13 teaches us, “We ask you brothers (and sisters), to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and esteem them very highly in love because of their work.  Be at peace among yourselves” (English Standard Version, parenthesis added).

The elders shall recommend to the congregation and seek the addition and election to their number from amongst the members of the church such men as meet the Biblical qualification for elders.  Such additions shall be desired as is deemed necessary for the ongoing and effective ministry of the elders.

All church ministries shall be under the oversight of the elders.  The elders shall appoint such committees as are deemed necessary for the caring of the church finances, missions, the coordination of the Sunday school, and any other ministry of the church.  Such committees shall function under the oversight of the church elders.  

The elders shall meet together to consider matters of ministry at least once each month or as often as may be deemed necessary by them, except perhaps in the summer.  All decisions of the elders shall be unanimous.  If the elders are unable to be unanimous concerning any matter, they shall set the matter aside and commit themselves to prayer seeking the wisdom of God and that spirit of unanimity amongst themselves.

The elders shall elect from their number a secretary who shall take, maintain and distribute the minutes of the elders’ meetings.  

ARTICLE 8 – THE PASTOR/TEACHER  

It is clear from the New Testament that those responsible for the spiritual welfare of the church exercised a variety of individual ministries and held a variety of individual offices.  It is not surprising, therefore, that amongst the elders; a distinction is made between those who direct the affairs of the church and those who labor in preaching and teaching.  The latter carry the responsibility attached in the first instance to the apostles of ministering the Word and are therefore referred to as pastor/teachers and or ministers of the Word.

Eph. 4:11; 2 Cor. 3:6; Eph. 3:7; Col. 4:7; 1 Thess. 3:2; 1 Tim. 5:17; 1 Tim. 4:6

A pastor/teacher’s responsibility:  A pastor (male) is one called by God to the pastoral – preaching ministry and is recognized by a local church committed to the teaching of the Bible where he has been a member in good standing and who has been set apart by the laying on of hands of the elders of that church.  

The church pulpit shall be his exclusive responsibility with regard to who is invited to preach and conduct the worship of the church, etc.  If the church is without a pastor/ teacher, the elders shall be responsible to supply the pulpit either by themselves or by invitation to other ministers of the Word until such time as a pastor/teacher is called and installed.

Calling and Ordination of a Pastor/Teacher:  Any male member from this church, who senses that God is calling him to the pastoral office and ministry, shall demonstrate that he possesses the characteristics required of elders in such passages of Scripture as Titus 1: 6-9 together with his love, care and spiritual concern for the church.  He shall have proved his calling by an example to the church by his careful walk with the Lord, his attendance at all the means of grace such as the worship services of the Lord’s Day; the church prayer meeting and Bible studies.  He shall also demonstrate to the satisfaction of the elders that God has gifted him with the ability to preach and teach the Word faithfully.  Following the examination of his theological understanding and his proven life of godliness, he shall be recommended to the church as a man whom God has called into the sacred ministry.  He shall be set apart to the ministry of the Word in recognition of God’s call by prayer and the laying on of the hands of the elders, at a worship service of the church.

The pastor/ teacher of Sovereign Grace Bible Church is set apart unto the gospel of God.  To him, in a special way, therefore, the gospel is committed as a solemn charge.  He is to preach the Word; being ready in season and out of season; reproving, rebuking, and exhorting, with complete patience and teaching (2 Tim. 4: 2).  That he might fully fulfill his God given responsibility; he is normally to be maintained wholly by the church he serves.  The elders shall determine such matters as his financial remuneration, vacation time, and sick leave.  A pastor-teacher may be eligible for a sabbatical to be determined by the elders.

1 Tim. 5:18; 1 Cor. 9:14

The pastor/teacher shall be one of the elders and be regarded as the first amongst equals.  As such he shall be the moderator of the meetings of the elders and of the church.

Appointment of a pastor:  The pastor shall be a Christian believer who is in full accord with the Statement of Faith and Constitution of Sovereign Grace Bible Church, Redondo Beach, California.  He shall be required to signify his agreement by signing his name to both documents without any mental or other reservations.

The existing elders of the church together with three representatives of the members (men and women) shall function as a pastoral search committee.  They shall prayerfully look for a man who has been called of God to the ministry of the Word and who has been ordained in recognition of this call and who has a measure of pastoral experience; proven ability to preach the Word and one who meets the requirements of an elder as set forth in
Titus 1: 6 – 9 and 1 Tim. 3: 1 – 7.

Once a man is chosen by the pastoral search committee, his name shall be placed before the church and the congregation invited to pray concerning his calling to be the pastor of the church. He shall be invited to candidate and be given the opportunity to meet the members of the church and to preach at the worship services.  He shall also be introduced to the members of the church at an informal gathering called for this purpose.  The pastor/teacher designate shall here field questions from the members.  His calling to the office of the pastor/teacher of Sovereign Grace Bible Church shall be determined by a two-thirds majority vote of the members of the church, though complete unanimity would be desired.    The vote shall be at a special meeting of the membership convened for this purpose.

The termination of a pastor’s ministry:  The pastor/teacher shall give the elders at least one month notice of his desire to terminate his ministry at the church. Such notice shall be communicated by the elders to the church.

Any action taken unilaterally by the church as represented by the elders shall only be upon the unanimous agreement of all the remaining elders, with at least two-thirds of the active membership expressing their consent by vote taken at a meeting of the church specially convened for this purpose.

ARTICLE 9 – ADDITIONAL PASTORAL STAFF  

Additional pastoral staff either full time or part time may be called as appropriate to meet the ministry needs of the church, provided funding is available in the church budget.  

An individual who is to be called shall be a man who is the object of God’s saving grace in Christ and who agrees without reservation to the church Statement of Faith and Constitution.  He shall be required to sign his name to both documents signifying his agreement.  He shall also be one who has a desire for the work and who has been interviewed and approved by the Board of Elders.  He shall then be presented to the members of the church.  Once he joins the pastoral staff he shall minister primarily under the oversight of the pastor-teacher and the elders. He shall also be supportive of the ministry of the pastor-teacher and of the elders.  Additional pastoral staff shall not be eligible for election to the Board of Elders.

Financial remuneration, vacation, and sick leave for additional pastoral staff shall be determined by the Board of Elders.

Pastoral staff, who after having been called, find themselves unable to agree to the church Statement of Faith and or Constitution or who are unable to minister under the oversight of the pastor-teacher and or the elders, shall quietly tender their resignation to the elders and leave without in any way causing dissension and or division within the fellowship of the church.  

Those who may be called to a different sphere of ministry outside the Sovereign Grace Bible Church should give the elders one month’s notice of their desire to seek another ministry opportunity or leave the work of the ministry altogether.

ARTICLE 10 – THE DEACONS

Their Function:  The word “deacon” literally means “servant” and is so translated many times in Scripture.  It is also used to denote an office in the church.  The function of the deacons is to relieve the elders of those necessary duties in the life of the church that are social and temporal. 

The deacons shall also be responsible for the care of all church property including the parsonage.  They shall also have the authority with the concurrence of the elders to lease the church facilities, other than the parsonage, and shall with the assistance of the finance committee set the cost of the lease.  Those leasing any of the church facilities shall sign a lease agreement prepared by the deacons and shall have their own insurance to make sure that the church does not suffer any liabilities.  

Phil.1:1; 1 Tim.3:8; Acts 6:2–4

Their Qualifications:  The deacons shall be men who are members of the church and whose character and conduct is in accord with the principles laid down in Scripture.

1 Tim.3:8–13

Their Appointment: The number of deacons shall be appropriate to the current needs of the church.  The appointment of deacons, who meet the Biblical qualifications, shall be prayerfully proposed by the elders to the members of the church.  Those proposed for this sacred office shall be from the membership of the church and shall be men who have first been tested.  They shall serve without any term limits unless they either disqualify themselves or choose to voluntarily step down as a deacon for personal reasons.

The deacons shall elect from their number a moderator who shall preside over the meetings of the deacons and a secretary, who shall take, maintain and distribute the minutes of all deacon meetings. 

Acts 6:3; 1 Tim.3:10

The Church Clerk:  The church clerk shall be a member of the church and shall be elected to office annually by a majority vote.  He/she shall take, prepare and maintain minutes of the business meetings of the church.  These minutes shall be maintained at the church office or at a place approved by the elders.

The Church Treasurer/Finance Committee:  The church treasurer shall be a member of the church and shall be elected to office annually.  The elders shall propose the name of the person willing to serve in this office to the members of the church and he/she shall be elected by a majority vote to office at the annual meeting of the members of the church.  The treasurer shall serve also as a member of the church finance committee, which committee shall be appointed annually by the Board of Elders.  Members of the committee shall be members in good standing in the church.  The committee shall serve under the oversight of the elders.

The treasurer and the finance committee shall be responsible to oversee all church finances including the preparation of the annual church budget, which budget shall be presented for discussion and vote at the annual meeting of the members of the church to be held each November or earlier prior to the Thanksgiving holiday.

The church finance committee shall elect annually from amongst their members a chairperson.  The financial secretary shall maintain minutes of all finance committee meetings.

The Church Financial Secretary:  The Board of Elders shall annually appoint a member of the church to serve as the financial secretary of the church.  The financial secretary shall be a member of the church finance committee and shall serve under the oversight of the elders. 

Fiscal Year:  The fiscal year of the church shall be from January 1 through December 31.

Financial Practices:  All church expenditures made by check shall require the signatures of two members of the finance committee as approved by the elders.

The Board of Elders may authorize a maximum single expenditure not to exceed Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00) without specific authorization of the members of the church.  Higher amounts shall be submitted to the members for approval.  In the event of an emergency or disaster where immediate action is required, the foregoing limitations shall be waived.  A meeting shall be called as soon as possible to report to the church the action taken and the expenses incurred.

Benevolent Fund:  The church shall establish a benevolent fund administered by the financial secretary under the oversight of the elders.  This fund shall be replenished by retiring offerings received on one prescribed Sunday of each month and designated for this purpose.  All disbursements from this fund shall only be used for benevolent purposes as approved by two elders.  This fund shall not be used to support retired ministers, missionaries and or church employees.

Contributions and Offerings:  All financial contributions and offerings collected shall be recorded and maintained in the church General Account.  All designated contributions shall only be accepted as these are approved by the elders.  Expenditures for designated accounts shall be made from the General Account.

The elders may, if required, establish other financial policies prepared and maintained by them for the benefit of the church

Non-Pastoral Church Staff:  Staff, in addition to the pastoral staff, may be employed as paid staff to engage in work for the church as needed.  Such staff may include secretaries or other positions as needed.  All such positions shall be approved by the elders and funded by the church budget.  Supervision of these positions shall be determined by the elders consistent with the work performed.  Salaries and benefits for these employees shall also be determined by the Board of Elders.

Additional Staff and Volunteer Qualification:  No person whose beliefs and conduct violates the teaching and requirements of Scripture and the church’s Statement of Faith and Constitution shall be called to any position of teaching ministry leadership or serve in such positions.  All church staff whether salaried or volunteer shall adhere with no mental reservation to the Biblical teaching on marriage as set forth in the church’s Constitution.

All church staff whether full time employees, part time employees or volunteers working with children are required to have a background check done before they are permitted to serve.  No one whose background check is unsatisfactory will be allowed to serve in any staff position where they are brought in ministry contact with children.

Indemnification:  The church shall indemnify her pastors, elders, all officers, employees and agents in accordance with California law.

ARTICLE 20 – MARRIAGE  

This church, in accord with the teaching of Scripture, holds that marriage is a holy institution ordained by God.  In accord with Scripture we further hold that marriage is to be a union between one man (male) and one woman (female). All other unions which may be defined as “marriage” we hold to be contrary to the teaching of Scripture and therefore not recognized as such and not acceptable by this church.  We further hold that it is the duty of Christian believers to marry only in the Lord.  No pastor, officer or representative of this church shall officiate and or perform any marriage which contradicts the teaching of Scripture and this Constitution.  The facilities belonging to this church shall not be used for the performance of a marriage which is contrary to Scripture and the provisions of its Constitution.

Gen.2:18–25; Matt.19:4–6; 1 Cor.7:9; 2 Cor. 6:14–16 

ARTICLE 21 – PROPERTY RIGHTS

This church shall have power to buy, own, and sell real property in its own name.  The purchase, sale, lease, mortgage or transfer of real property by the church shall be approved according to the following procedure:

The Board of Elders shall present to the membership, in written form, any proposed purchase or sale.

A meeting shall be scheduled no sooner than two (02) weeks after the proposal has been presented, for the purpose of open discussion.

A business meeting shall be scheduled no less than one (01) week later for further discussion and vote.  The vote shall be by ballot and shall require two thirds of the votes cast.   

If this church ceases to function and its organization is dissolved, at the time of the dissolution the remaining assets shall be placed in trust in the name of the church with one or more nonprofit Christian organization of the choice of the remaining members of the church.  This organization(s) shall be carefully investigated by the existing elders together with two representatives of the Board of Deacons and three representatives from the membership of the church.  The recommended organization(s) shall be chosen by the members by ballot and shall require three quarters of the ballots cast.  

ARTICLE 22 – AMENDMENTS

(A)  Any amendments to the church Statement of Faith and or Constitution shall be first presented to the church elders.  If the elders are unanimously in agreement to such amendments which are deemed by them to be beneficial to the cause of Christ and the church, such amendments shall be proposed to the members one week prior to the calling of a meeting to specifically discuss such amendments.  Two weeks following such discussions the members shall be called to a further meeting to discuss and vote on the amendments.  A two thirds majority of the members present shall be required for such amendments to pass.

ARTICLE 23 – BUSINESS MEETINGS  

All church business meetings shall be regarded by the members as part of their service to the Lord of the church and shall therefore be conducted in that spirit.  Therefore, all business meetings shall be opened with prayer for wisdom, discernment and direction from the Lord by His Spirit and His Word.  Business meetings shall be presided over by the pastor-teacher or by his designee of a member of the Board of Elders.  In the absence of a pastor-teacher, the elders shall determine who from amongst the elders shall preside over the meeting.

An annual meeting of the members for the purpose of receiving and voting on the proposed budget; the election of elders and deacons (if needed) and to discuss and decide on all other matters presented to the members through the Board of Elders shall be held no later than a week prior to Thanksgiving.

Additional meetings may also be called by the Board of Elders and or by the application to the Board of Elders of fifty percent (50%) or more of the active members of the church.  One week notice specifying the purpose of such meetings shall be made to the church at a morning fellowship of worship.

   Quorum:  A quorum shall consist of one third (1/3) of the membership.

Voting:  The privilege of voting is conferred upon all the members eighteen years of age or over.  Voting at most meetings shall be by ballot or as approved by the Board of Elders.

If a member chooses to vote ‘no’ on any proposed measure, the elders would appreciate if this member would give the reason so that his/her thinking may be taken into consideration.

Absentee Ballots:  Absentee ballots are available for church members who are unable to be present and vote in person at a business meeting of the church.  It is expected/encouraged for members to make every effort to participate in all business meetings of the church as they are able.  However, absentee ballots will only be counted if there is a quorum of members present and the business meeting is able to proceed.

In order to have an absentee ballot counted, members voting absentee are required to write their names on the ballot.  All absentee ballots will have a space for comments, so that any concerns/comments may be brought into the discussion during the meeting in the members’ absence as appropriate.  

Definition of Passing Votes:  

Affirmative Vote is defined as two thirds (2/3rds) of the votes cast as required by the church Constitution.

Majority Vote is defined as more than one half (50% or more) of the votes cast.