We, the members of this congregation, Southpoint Baptist Church, do ordain and establish the following Articles of Faith and By-Laws to which we voluntarily submit ourselves.
Since the Scriptures declare that in the last days many shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils, and many will be engaged in scattering the fatal seeds of error, directly affecting the honor of our Lord Jesus Christ and the destiny of the soul, we feel constrained by fidelity to Him to adopt the Statement of Faith and Covenant herein contained, to which we ask the assent of all applicants for membership, including pastors. This church is organized for the winning of the lost to Jesus Christ as Saviour and Lord; to accomplish the primary functions of worship, proclamation, education and training, and ministry.
Article I - STATEMENT OF FAITH
WE BELIEVE in one perfect, infinite, holy, and eternal God, Creator of all things, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
WE BELIEVE in Jesus Christ, God's only begotten Son, His virgin birth, sinless life, sacrificial death for our sins, His bodily resurrection, and His personal, literal, imminent return.
WE BELIEVE that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are verbally inspired by God and inerrant in the original writings, our only infallible and authoritative rule for faith and practice.
WE BELIEVE that man was created in the image of God, but in Adam's sin the human race fell, and inherited a sin nature, and became alienated from God; that man is totally depraved and of himself, totally unable to remedy his lost condition.
WE BELIEVE in salvation by grace, through faith, available freely to the whole human race, but received only by those who trust in the completed work of Christ.
WE BELIEVE that all who take Christ as Savior are born from above by action of the Holy Spirit and are eternally secure from all condemnation; rejection of Him brings condemnation to eternal Hell.
WE BELIEVE in righteous living and good works, not as a means of salvation, but as its evidence and fruit.
WE BELIEVE in the distinct personality of Satan, that he is the "god of this age,” author of all the powers of darkness and sin, and is destined to the judgment of an eternal justice in the lake of fire.
WE BELIEVE in the Church which is the body and bride of Jesus Christ which includes all born-again believers, whose purpose is to glorify God through worship, prayer, fellowship, teaching, witnessing of Christ, and observing the ordinances of her Lord. These are the Baptism of believers by immersion and the Lord's Supper.
WE BELIEVE that the Holy Spirit seals, baptizes, in-dwells, and regenerates all believing sinners at the moment of conversion; that He sovereignly gives every believer at least one gift for service, but that certain gifts of tongues, the gift of healing, and the gift of miracles were temporary sign gifts and are no longer in the Church today.
WE BELIEVE in the bodily, personal return of Jesus Christ; that He will come for the believers, catching them away in the rapture. We believe that God will bring to pass the details of His Son's return to earth in the manner taught in God's Word. While we acknowledge the vast diversity of opinion surrounding the doctrine of the return of Christ, and do not wish to make this matter a test of fellowship, the general opinion held by the church is a pre-tribulational, pre-millennial position.
WE ACKNOWLEDGE that the above doctrinal statement in no way exhausts the content of our faith which is in the entire Word of God. We do believe that these statements are representative of the sound doctrine taught in the Bible.
Article II - CORPORATE STATUS
For convenience in handling legal business matters, this church has been incorporated under the Laws of the State of Florida as a nonprofit corporation. It is not intended that any of its principles, doctrines, or ordinances as a Baptist church shall be thereby affected, except as to those matters and things specifically required by the corporate charter or By-Laws. These as hereinafter set forth shall govern and control all matters, actions, and affairs of the church. In order that the church's corporate and non-corporate status may be closely coordinated, officers shall be elected, consisting of President, who shall be the Pastor; Vice President, who shall be the chairman of the Board of Trustees; Treasurer, who shall be the church Treasurer; and Secretary, who shall be the church Clerk.
Article III - CHURCH COVENANT
Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God, to receive the Lord Jesus as our Saviour, and on the profession of our faith, having been baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, we do now in the presence of God, angels and this assembly, most solemnly and joyfully enter into covenant with one another, as one body in Christ.
We engage therefore, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, to walk together in Christian love; to strive for the advancement of this church, in knowledge, holiness, and comfort; to promote its prosperity and spirituality; to sustain its worship, ordinances, discipline, and doctrines; to give it a sacred preeminence over all institutions of human origin; to contribute cheerfully and regularly to the support of the ministry, the expense of the church, the relief of the poor, and the spreading of the Gospel through all nations.
We also engage to maintain family and sacred devotion; to religiously educate our children; to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances; to walk circumspectly in the world; to be just in our dealings, faithful in our engagements and exemplary in our deportment; to avoid all tattling, back-biting, and excessive anger; to abstain from the sale and use of intoxicating drinks as a beverage; and to be zealous in our efforts to advance the kingdom of our Saviour.
We further engage to watch over one another in brotherly love; to remember each other in prayer; to aid each other in sickness and distress; to cultivate Christian sympathy in feeling and courtesy in speech; to be slow to take offense, but always ready for reconciliation, and mindful of the rule of our Saviour to secure it without delay.
Article IV - CHARACTER OF GOVERNMENT
Section A - Policy
This church shall be informal in ritual and the government is vested in the body of believers of which the church is composed. It is subject to the control of no other ecclesiastical body, and no denominational or associational representatives shall ever sit in judgment or council over its affairs. It shall never become a member of the Federal Council, National Council, or World Council of Churches, or any of its affiliated agencies. If an attempt should be made to do this, any five (5) members in good standing can prevent it.
Section B - Doctrine
This church receives the Scriptures as its authority in all matters of faith and practice.
Section C - Support
The expenses of the church, including the Pastor's salary, and all expenses of the various societies and organized bodies of the church and Sunday School, shall be raised by voluntary, free-will tithes and offerings of God's people.
Section D - Revision of By-Laws
The church may make any amendments in the By-Laws which seem necessary. Such changes shall be governed by the rules set down in Article XV, AMENDMENT TO BY-LAWS.
Section E - Missions
Mission fields and missionaries supported by this church shall be recommended by the Pastor and Missions Committee and voted on in a regular or called business meeting.
Section F - Fellowship Affiliation
For purpose of fellowship and mission support, this congregation shall be affiliated with The World Baptist Fellowship.
Article V - MEMBERSHIP
Section A - Acquiring
Membership in this church may be acquired in the following manner:
1. Baptism: Any person professing faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and giving evidence of a change of heart, may by vote of the church, baptism by immersion, and the extending of the hand of fellowship, be received into the membership.
2. Letter: Any person to whom the ordinance of baptism by immersion has been administered, may be received from other churches of like faith and order, by letter, upon vote of the church and extending the hand of fellowship.
3. Statement of Faith: Any person making a statement of a prior conversion and baptism by immersion, upon vote of the church and extending the hand of fellowship.
4. Restoration: Any person whose membership has been terminated may be restored upon vote of the church and extending the hand of fellowship, whatever the offense has been, upon evidence of his repentance and reformation.
Section B - Termination
Membership in this church may be terminated in the following manner:
2. Dismission to another Baptist Church, by letter in answer to a request from another Baptist Church.
3. Affiliation with a church of another faith, when such affiliation is confirmed by another church in writing.
4. Exclusion by action of this church.
Article VI - OFFICERS
Section A - Church Officers
The officers of this church shall consist of the Pastor, at least seven (7) Deacons, at least three (3) Trustees, the Treasurer and the Clerk.
Section B - Corporate Officers
Corporation officers will consist of the President, who shall be the Pastor; the Vice President, who shall be the Chairman of the Board of Trustees; the Secretary, who shall be the church Clerk; and the Treasurer, who shall be the church Treasurer.
Article VII - ELECTION & DUTIES OF OFFICERS
Section A - Pastor
The pastor shall be called for an indefinite period and he shall be at liberty to resign the care of the church upon giving thirty (30) days notice of his intentions to do so, and the church shall have the right to dispense with his services upon giving similar notice. The thirty (30) days notice may be dispensed with by mutual consent of the church and the Pastor. The Pastor shall receive such compensation for his services as the church may determine. 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, of which at least two (2) weeks public notice, both from the pulpit and through the bulletin, shall be given. A pulpit committee shall be appointed by the church to seek out a suitable pastor, and their recommendation will constitute a nomination. The committee shall bring to the church only one man at a time. Election shall be by secret ballot, an affirmative vote of three-fourths (75%) of those members present and voting being necessary for a choice. The pastor, thus elected, shall serve until the relationship is terminated by his request or the church's request, as stated above.
The Pastor's primary duties are as a preacher to proclaim the whole Gospel, as a Bishop to superintend the work of the church and to serve the people for Jesus' sake. He shall have general oversight of the church in all departments, lead the church staff in performing their tasks, be moderator of all meetings of the church and be an ex-officio member of all committees.
Section B - Deacons
The Deacon Body shall consist of at least seven (7) members or a sufficient number as determined by the Pastor and the Deacon Body. The term of each deacon shall be three (3) years. No deacon shall be eligible for re-election for at least one (1) year after the expiration of each term of service. Whenever additional deacons are needed, the names will be submitted by the general church body at a regular or called business meeting. The names will be received by the Deacon Selection Committee, which will determine if the candidates meet the scriptural qualifications. The candidates elected by the Deacon Selection Committee will then be presented to the church for approval.
The deacons shall hold their offices in gravity and fear of God and shall consider themselves as servants in our Lord's Kingdom. Matters of church business that come before them shall be decided by majority vote with Christian humility and fairness in all things. The deacons shall be associated with the Pastor as counselors. It shall be the duty of the deacons to seek the salvation of the lost, to promote the Kingdom of God on earth, and to devote themselves to the spiritual welfare of the members and to their active enlistment in church services. It shall be their duty to use all proper efforts to reclaim such members as may become remiss in their covenant obligations. Should these efforts be unavailing, they shall report such efforts to the church for action. It shall be their duty to assist the Pastor in the administration of the ordinances and to cooperate with and assist the Pastor in the prosecution of all interests of the church. They shall meet as often as needed for the consideration of their specific duties and the general welfare of the church and to make such recommendations to the church for action as may seem to them to be expedient.
Section C - Trustees
The Trustees shall be elected at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting. The Board of Trustees shall consist of at least three (3) members who shall elect one (1) of their number as chairman. The chairman of the Board of Trustees shall serve as Vice President of the Church Corporation. The term of office of a Trustee shall be one (1) year. Trustees shall be eligible for re-election, and shall serve a maximum of three (3) consecutive terms.
The Trustees shall manage the legal affairs of the church. They shall have power to buy, sell, mortgage, lease or transfer church property by a specific vote of the church authorizing each action. The Trustees shall serve as legal representatives for the church.
Section D - Treasurer
A church Treasurer shall be elected at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting. It shall be the duty and responsibility of the Treasurer to administer the receiving and disbursing of all monies in accordance with the provisions set forth in Article XI, STANDING COMMITTEES, Section B, Finance. The Treasurer shall keep true books of account in a form prescribed by the church and be responsible for the safekeeping of said books and the documents of title to the properties of the church.
The Treasurer shall render to the Pastor a monthly report of the financial operations of the church for the preceding month and the financial status of the church at the close of the said previous month. An annual report shall be rendered by the Treasurer to the church at the close of the fiscal year. The Treasurer shall also serve as an ex-officio member of the Counting Committee as that Committee is described in Article XI, STANDING COMMITTEES, Section C, Counting. The Treasurer shall at all times be bonded by an insurance and/or bonding policy carried and maintained by the church. The Church may delegate a portion of the above responsibilities to the church Financial Secretary at its discretion.
Section E - Clerk
A church Clerk shall be elected at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting. The duties of the Clerk shall include the keeping of true and legal records of the minutes of the Trustees, the attesting and affixing of the corporate seal to all legal papers by order of the church, reporting to the church and performing such other duties as may be provided by the charter. The Clerk shall also keep a record of the transactions of the church in meetings for business, insure that major actions affecting the life of the church are indexed chronologically in the record book, keep a register of the names of the members of the church including the dates received, method of receiving, dates of death and dismissal and methods of dismissal, sign all letters of dismission and be the custodian of the records and papers belonging to the church except those designated to be kept by the Treasurer.
When a member of the church has been excluded, it shall be the duty of the Clerk to notify such person of the action taken. At the discretion and election by the church, some of the above described duties of the Clerk may be delegated as the responsibility of the secretary on the church staff.
Article VIII - CHURCH STAFF
Section A - Purpose and Responsibility
The Church Staff collectively is charged with implementing and leading the programs of the church in accordance with the policies established by the church and within the financial limitations prescribed in the church budget. Each member of the Staff is ultimately responsible to the church for all of his/her actions.
Section B - Composition
The church staff shall be composed of the pastor, ministerial staff, and the support staff.
1. Pastor: The pastor is the spiritual and administrative leader of the church and as such shall have supervision over all staff members. The pastor is to lead the flock and guide the church in accordance with a church-approved job description. He is responsible for providing leadership toward the accomplishing of the church's primary functions, e.g., worship, proclamation, education and training, ministry and administration in meeting the needs of the people in the church and community.
2. Ministerial Staff: The ministerial staff called by the church shall lead, coordinate and direct functions, programs and committees in accordance with the church-approved job descriptions and with other specific areas of responsibilities (consistent with current needs) as assigned by the pastor and the personnel committee. They shall communicate and work directly with the deacons, church committees and program committees and program organizations to assure that these groups are kept current on all activities within their areas of responsibility.
3. Support Staff: The support staff shall be composed of all other employees of the church.
Section C - Call and Termination of Ministerial and Support Staff
1. Call: Members of the ministerial staff shall be called by the church upon recommendation of the pastor, personnel committee and active body of deacons in accordance with the positions and job descriptions established and approved by the church. A majority vote of the church sitting in conference shall be required to call any such staff member. Support staff shall be hired upon recommendation of the pastor and the personnel committee.
2. Resignation: Members of the ministerial staff shall give a two (2) week notice of their resignation.
4. Waiver of Notice: The staff member and the church, by mutual consent, may reduce or dispense with the requirement of notice of resignation or termination.
Article IX - COUNCILS
Section A - Church Council
The Church Council shall consist of the pastor and staff, Chairman of the Deacon Body, Minister of Music, and all directors of organized ministries. It shall be the duty of the Church Council to recommend objectives and goals and correlate a church calendar of activities so that all organizations can work in cooperation. The Church Council will have only two (2) officers--the Pastor will serve as Chairman and the Chairman of the Deacon Body will serve as the Vice Chairman. The church secretary shall attend such meetings at the discretion of the Chairman. The Chairman of Standing Committees may attend Church Council meetings whenever projects or programs in which they are involved are to be considered by the Church Council. All matters agreed upon by the Church Council which call for action not already authorized shall be referred to the church for approval. Meetings of the Church council will be held monthly or at the call of the Chairman.
Article X - ORGANIZED MINISTRIES
All organized Ministries of the church shall be under church control and it is understood that the Pastor is an ex-officio officer of all the organizations named, and his leadership is to be recognized in them.
Section A - Sunday School
There shall be a Sunday School, divided into departments and classes for all ages and conducted under the direction of a general director, for the study of God's Word. Sunday School is to be conducted each Sunday morning. The tasks of the Sunday School shall be to: (a) teach the Biblical revelation; (b) lead in reaching all prospects for the church; (c) lead all church members to worship, witness, learn and minister daily; and (d) provide and interpret information regarding the work of the church. The Director shall begin planning his annual budget and the selection of his teachers and officers as soon as elected. The Sunday School Director shall be elected by the church at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting.
Section B - Youth
This shall be a ministry for the Youth of the church. Youth shall be sixth (6th) through twelfth (12th) grade. The Youth Ministry shall be responsible for planning and coordinating the Youth activities. This program shall be led by a Director who shall be elected by the church at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting.
Section C - AWANA
This shall be a ministry for children, three (3) years old through sixth (6th) grades. It is a Bible-centered youth organization providing weekday clubs and programs, whose goal is to reach boys and girls with the gospel of Christ, and train them to serve Him. This program shall be led by a Director who shall be elected by the church at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting.
Section D - Church Hostess
The Church Hostess shall be responsible for formulating policies regarding the use of the kitchen and communicating those policies to church members. She shall choose a committee to assist her with her duties, as needed. The Church Hostess shall serve on the Church Council.
Section E - Prime Timers
This shall be a ministry for senior adults. Meetings shall be on the last Tuesday of each month, unless special activities are planned for another day. A Director shall be elected by the church at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting.
Section F - Southpoint Baptist Men
This shall be a ministry for the men of the church. It shall provide organization and leadership for all men in service to the church. A Director shall be elected by the church at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting.
Section G - Southpoint Baptist Women
This shall be a ministry for the women of the church. It shall provide organization and leadership for all women in service to the church. A Director shall be elected by the church at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting.
Section H - Other Ministries
As conditions warrant and circumstances arise, other ministries may be established as needed. All Directors shall be elected by the church at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting.
Article XI - STANDING COMMITTEES
All standing committees shall be composed of an odd number of members. They shall be elected by the church at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting.
Section A - Budget
It shall be the responsibility of this committee to plan fund requirements for the expenses of the church. Annually, an inclusive budget plan shall be coordinated with all organizational leaders of the church, submitted to the deacons for review, and presented to the church for approval. The plan shall contain projected requirements for all fixed and recurring expenses. When required, budget accounts will be adjusted and submitted to the church for approval to meet unforeseen expenses within the total monetary limitations adopted by the church.
In presenting a new church budget, the Budget Committee shall substantiate any increases and indicate where changes are being recommended so that the church may be kept informed. The Budget Committee shall likewise review any amendment that is made to a motion or recommendation before the church which alters the monetary amount so approved by the Committee. The Committee shall then re-present the motion with the amendment and its recommendation to the church for its final vote on such motion. Such re-presentment shall be made by the next scheduled business meeting.
Section B - Finance
It shall be the duty of this committee to, at the discretion of the Pastor, evaluate any requisitioned item by comparing the requested item with the budget requirement and approve or disapprove the expenditure. Should the item be questionable, the chairman may call the Budget Committee to meet with them to review the request and determine its necessity. A majority vote of the committee will determine the disposition of the questionable request. However, such recommendation likewise being presented in order that the church may have a final vote on the matter. Purchases of $500.00 or more, except church literature, will be presented to the Deacon Body for their review, approval and recommendation to the church. An exception to this policy will be emergency items needed immediately for the health and comfort of the church. However, such expenditures for emergency items shall be brought to the attention of the church as a point of information at the next regular or called business meeting.
Section C - Counting
It shall be the duty of this committee to count all monies received in any and all regular or special contributions, to list how such funds are distributed by the donors and to make the deposit ticket. The Treasurer shall be an ex-officio member of this committee. The Counting Committee shall be charged with the responsibility of tabulating the results of all church-wide elections.
Section D - Nominating
This committee shall be elected by the church at a regular business meeting or a called business meeting, at a reasonable time before the beginning of the new church year to allow them to dispense their duties. Each church member voting will list five (5) names in secret ballot and the five (5) nominees receiving the most votes shall be contacted for the purpose of serving on this committee. In the event one of these should decline, the nominee receiving the sixth (6th) most votes will be contacted, and so forth until all five (5) positions are filled.
The principal function of this committee shall be to work with the Pastor in coordinating the staffing of all church leadership positions that are filled by volunteers. Its primary duties will be to select, interview, and enlist the volunteer workers for all church-elected positions.
Section E - Ushers
It shall be the duty of this committee to be of service to congregation members before, during and after services, and to maintain a worshipful atmosphere in the church. Its main duties shall be to: (a) greet the people before and after the services; (b) seat those entering at specified times before and during the services; (c) give directions as required; (d) distribute church bulletins and visitors cards; (e) receive the offering; (f) help maintain order during services.
Section F - Library
It shall be the duty of this committee to have supervision over the church library, screen and evaluate all books given to the library as to their appropriateness for the library, and approve the purchase of all library related materials.
Section G - Counseling
It shall be the duty of this committee to be available during all worship services to assist the Pastor in counseling any who make public their desire to unite with the church. Effort should be made to determine genuineness of faith and trust in Christ as Saviour. They shall see that all new church members receive a copy of the Church By-Laws.
Section H - Benevolence
It shall be the duty of this committee to seek out, investigate and minister in the spirit of brotherly love to any who are in need to the extent possible.
Section I - Baptismal
This committee may assist in the visitation and counseling of all baptismal candidates. It shall be the duty of this committee to: (a) see that the baptistry is filled with water for each baptismal service; (b) to provide robes, towels and dressing rooms for candidates; and (c) assist the Pastor and candidates in any way necessary.
Section J - Historical
This committee's principal function is to preserve and use the historical records of the church to help members understand and appreciate their heritage and mission. The committee shall be especially concerned with: (a) gathering and preserving available church records; and (b) recording full and accurate records.
Section K - Audio
It shall be the duty of this Committee to: (a) control, maintain and operate lights, the sound system, recording system and films for all worship services, prayer services and special events including revivals and weddings; and (b) teach the operation of such audio system and equipment to those members of this committee designated as trainees.
Section L - By-Laws Revision
This committee shall be responsible for the reviewing and/or revising of the By-Laws of this church. A review and/or revision shall be made at least every ten (10) years, or as needed, with such revisions, where applicable, being presented to the church for approval and after such approval, shall be made available to the church in a published form.
Section M - Missions Committee
This committee shall consist of five (5) members who shall have the responsibility of working with the pastor in determining which missionaries shall receive support from the church. It shall also determine the measure of doctrinal likeness and the need of support for each missionary candidate. The Missions Committee shall plan the mission budget and work with the Budget and Finance Committees when needful to coordinate an appropriate annual financial presentation. It shall recommend the missionary projects to be supported by the church and maintain contacts with missionaries. Furthermore, it shall encourage prayer for, and church-wide interest in, these and other missionary causes.
Section N - Personnel Committee
This committee assists the church in matters related to employed personnel administration, including those called by church action. The work of the Personnel Committee includes such areas as determining staff needs, employment, salaries,
benefits, other compensation, policies, job descriptions, and personnel services.
Section O - Other Committees
As conditions warrant and circumstances arise, other committees shall be established to fulfill special purposes, needs, and responsibilities.
Article XII - MEETINGS
Section A - Worship
The church shall meet regularly every Sunday morning and evening for the worship of Almighty God. On Wednesday of each week, it shall be the duty of the members to meet for prayer, Bible study and testimony. The ordinance of the Lord's Supper shall be observed monthly. At least once during the quarter the Lord's Supper shall be observed during the Sunday morning worship service. Any deviation from the above will be at the discretion of the Pastor.
Section B - Business Meetings
The regular business meetings of the church shall be held on Wednesday night after the second Sunday of each month. Special meetings of the church for transaction of business may be called by the pastor or on a written request signed by not less than fifteen (15%) per centum of the active Sunday School enrollment. If matters under consideration may seriously affect the life of the church, notice shall be made for not less than two (2) Sundays from the pulpit or church bulletin. Items of a serious nature shall be decided by secret ballot unless otherwise directed by the church.
The Pastor of the church, or in his absence the Chairman of the Deacon Body, or in his absence any brother whom the church may appoint, shall act as moderator in all meetings for the transaction of business. It shall be the duty of the moderator to keep order and to state and explain propositions.
A quorum for the transaction of business shall be constituted by an attendance equivalent or greater than fifteen (15%) per centum of the active Sunday School roll membership as of the Sunday immediately preceding the meeting so called. Voting privileges shall be extended only to active members sixteen (16) years of age or older.
Article XIII - DISCIPLINE
In all cases of personal difficulty between members of the church, the parties involved shall endeavor to bring about a reconciliation in the manner laid down by our Saviour, and recorded in Matthew 5:23-24 and 18:15-17.
When any member is accused of any offense against the requirements and discipline of the church, the Deacon Body shall at once give notice to the persons implicated, and shall proceed immediately to investigate it. Should the investigation result in favor of the accused or should the person remove the cause of grief, the Deacon Body shall make no report to the church.
In each case in which a member is charged with an offense that would subject him or her to expulsion, the Deacon Body shall by themselves express a judgment upon the merits of the case and shall communicate their judgments with recommendations to the church. The accused shall be duly notified of the Deacon Body's proposed action, and the church shall adopt or reject their recommendations without discussion, unless the accused demands a rehearing, in which case the examination before the church shall be conducted in the same manner as before the Deacon Body. This being understood that any person may upon his own responsibility bring charges directly before the church.
If any member holds and disseminates any view of doctrine considered by the church unscriptural and hurtful, or shall be the cause of strife and division, and after proper labor to reclaim him shall persist in the harmful practice, it shall be considered a disciplinary offense. Any member of the church willfully absenting himself from meetings of the church or habitually refusing to contribute when able to the support of the church or showing himself lacking interest in and kindly feelings for the church, shall be regarded as offending against the Church Covenant (Article III) and shall be liable to be disciplined by the church.
Members of the church who habitually stay away from the church and fail to participate in any of its organizations for a period of six (6) months, extenuating circumstances excepted, shall be dropped from the active membership and placed on a roll designated as "inactive". Members so designated as inactive shall not be eligible to vote in church elections. Later, should these members give evidence of active participation in the church program, they will be transferred back to the active roll of those in full standing.
A Pastor or staff member who engages in any activity of such immoral nature as to bring open shame to the name of Christ and His Church will be immediately discharged of their responsibilities and will receive only such compensation as is due them to the date of their dismissal.
Article XIV - FINANCES
As a church, we adopt the system of Tithes and Offerings, as set out in the New Testament: "Upon the first day of the week, let every one of you lay by him in store as God has prospered him." All funds contributed to the church by members or others shall be deposited to the credit of the church and disbursed by the Treasurer upon the order of the church as set forth in its budget or as authorized by the church. All designated funds shall be sacredly applied according to the will of the donors.
The Treasurer shall pay out money only as is authorized in the budget, appropriated by vote of the church at any business meeting, or designated by the donors. All checks shall bear the signature of two (2) co-signers as designated by the church.
The Budget Committee shall prepare for the approval of the church at the regular monthly business meeting in December of each church year an estimate of the various items of current expenses of the year. When approved by the church, these items shall constitute the budget.
The fiscal year of the church shall begin on January 1 and end on December 31.
Article XV - AMENDMENT TO BY-LAWS
The By-Laws of the church are to be the rules for governing the actions and affairs of the church. The By-Laws shall be made, altered, amended or rescinded by a three-fourths (75%) vote of the members of the church present and voting at any regular business meeting or a called business meeting. The same must be previously announced from the pulpit for two (2) successive Sundays or published two (2) successive Sundays in the church bulletin.
Article XVI - AMENDMENT TO CHARTER
The Charter of the church may be changed, altered or amended by resolution duly passed by a three-fourths (75%) vote of members of the church present and voting at any regular business meeting or a called business meeting. The said meeting shall have been previously announced for two (2) consecutive Sundays from the pulpit or published two (2) consecutive Sundays in the church bulletin.