The following recommendation comes from the Guidelines to Faith and Practice Committee in consultation with and approval of the staff and deacons.
We live in an increasingly litigious age. Because of cultural and legal pressure on the church and those who consider themselves Christ-followers, we are finding it increasingly more difficult to express and follow what we believe to be biblical convictions and morality. Jude 1:3 reminds us that we must “contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.” We are not panicked by and neither do we live in fear of the culture that God has called us to love and serve. Christ established His church and we know that not even the gates of hell can prevail against it.
But in this age and in this culture, God provides material resources that enable the church to accomplish its mission, and we must be good stewards of those resources. One of the ways we steward well the assets of the church is by making sure that our governing documents are in order and that we operate within the guidelines provided by those governing documents. As the church changes to meet the needs of those we are called to serve, it is wise from time to time to review and make changes to the governing documents. That is the purpose of this packet and recommendation from the Guidelines to Faith and Practice that we will ask the church to affirm at the upcoming Quarterly Business meeting on Wednesday, August 2, 2023.
We have included a summary of the major changes to our bylaws for those who are only interested in the intent of the changes. We have also included the details of each change, striking out what we are deleting, and italicizing what we are adding for those who want to see the actual changes being made. As always, a complete copy of the current bylaws are available from the church office upon request.
We are intentionally making these changes available thirty days in advance of the vote in order to field any questions or concerns that you might have. We have also included three changes to the constitution. These changes will be available for review for ninety days and will be voted on in a special called business meeting on Sunday, September 24, 2023.
The Guidelines to Faith and Practice Committee recommends that the church adopt the proposed changes to the bylaws that are included in the attached summary and detail and that the church authorize the staff to adjust the numbering, order, punctuation, and grammar in the final document rewrite should the need arise.