NEW HOPE CHURCH
NEW CASTLE, COLORADO.
ARTICLE I – DOCTRINE 1
ARTICLE II – MEMBERSHIP 1
Section 1 - Admission of Members: 1
Section 2 – Responsibilities of Members: 2
Section 3 - Inactive Members: 2
Section 4 – Ministry of Reconciliation: 2
Section 5 - Termination of Membership: 2
A. By Death:
B. By Letter:
C. By Discipline:
D. By Request:
ARTICLE III – BOARD OF ELDERS AND PASTORAL STAFF
Section 1 - Board of Elders
A. General: 3
B. Responsibility: 3
C. Qualification: 3
D. Selection of Elders: 3
E. Term: 4
F. Accountability: 4
Section 2 – Pastoral Staff
A. Responsibility: 4
B. Qualification: 4
C. Calling a Pastor: 4
D. Dissolution of Relationship: 4
ARTICLE IV – OFFICERS
Section 1 - General: 5
Section 2 - Qualification and Election: 5
Section 3 - Term of Service: 5
Section 4 – Termination of Officers: 5
Section 5 - Filling Vacated Positions: 5
Section 6 - Duties
A. The Moderator 5
B. The Clerk 5
C. The office of Treasurer 5
ARTICLE V – FISCAL AND LEGAL PROCEDURES
Section 1 - Fiscal Year 6
Section 2 – Congregational Meetings
A. Business Meetings: 6
B. Annual Meeting: 6
C. Special Meetings: 6
D. Voting: 6
Section 3 - Indebtedness and Real Estate 6
NEW HOPE CHURCH
NEW CASTLE, COLORADO.
WHEREAS we, a body of believers in Jesus Christ, organized for the purpose of praising and worshiping God, bringing Him glory and making disciples of all nations, deem it advisable that we have definite rules of operation and conduct so that all may be done decently and in order (1 Cor. 14:40) and the principles of this church carefully guarded and maintained. THEREFORE: be it resolved that, beginning April 25th, 2004, in addition to the constitution, this church shall be governed by these Bylaws which supersede all previous Bylaws.
ARTICLE I - DOCTRINE
This church receives the Bible, comprised of both Old and New Testaments, as the inspired Word of God, inerrant in the original writings, complete as the revelation of God's will for salvation, and the supreme and final authority in faith and life. In addition to the statement of faith in the constitution and as a summary of principles for Christian conduct among its members, it adopts the following Church Covenant.
Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God, to receive the Lord Jesus Christ as our Saviour, and having professed our faith, and 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 and this assembly, most solemnly and joyfully enter into covenant with one another, as one body in Jesus 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 righteousness; to sustain its worship and ordinances, discipline and doctrines; to contribute cheerfully and regularly to the support of the ministry, the expenses of the church, the relief of the poor, and the spread of the Gospel through all nations.
We further engage to maintain, as far as possible, family and personal devotions; to educate our children in the Christian Faith; to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances; to act as a Christian in every aspect of our daily lives and in our public conduct; and to be zealous in our efforts to advance the kingdom of our Savior.
We also 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, courtesy in speech and to be slow to take offense but always seeking prompt reconciliation.
We moreover engage that if we remove from this place, we will, as soon as possible, unite with some other church where we can carry out the spirit and the principles of God's Word.
ARTICLE II - MEMBERSHIP
Section 1 - Admission of Members:
Any person professing faith in Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Savior, having been baptized, who holds the Scriptures as his all sufficient basis of faith and life, may be admitted into membership in this church by approval of the Board of Elders and presentation to the congregation. Baptism by any method shall be valid for qualification as a member; however, this church, in its own practice, shall baptize a believer only by immersion except when health conditions call for another method, such as pouring.
Section 2 - Responsibilities of Members:
It is expected that all members understand and fully support the Statement of Faith and the Church Covenant as adopted in the Constitution and Bylaws, respectively.
All active members shall be entitled to all the rights, privileges and obligations of membership. They shall be allowed to vote on matters relating to church business if they are 16 years of age or older.
Section 3 - Inactive Members:
If a member has been determined to be inactive for a period of one or more years, his or her membership status may be reviewed by the Board of Elders. Based on this review their membership may be placed in an inactive, non-voting status or dropped.
A person who has been placed in the inactive, non-voting status may, upon that person’s request, be restored to active membership by approval of the Board of Elders.
Section 4 - Ministry of Reconciliation
A. Discipline: Discipline for sin with the aim of restoration is a biblically mandated church function. Discipline will be carried out per Galatians 6:1-2; Matthew 5:22-26; 18:15-17, and 1 Corinthians 5. Authority to dismiss an individual from church membership shall be vested solely in the Board of Elders.
B. Grievances: All cases of grievances between members of the body, including; Pastoral Staff, individual Elders, paid staff, ministry leaders, church members, etc. shall be handled in accordance with Matthew 5 and 8. Charges, if necessary, shall be submitted to the Board of Elders for appropriate action and/or assistance.
All grievances, issues or concerns regarding the Board of Elders shall be submitted directly to the Pastor or the Board of Elders by two or more church members in accordance with Matthew 18. It is the Board of Elders’ desire to resolve any grievances, issues or concerns brought before the Board rapidly and with an overarching desire to ensure reconciliation in the spirit of 1 Timothy 5:17-20. If this grievance is not resolved to the satisfaction of both parties, then it may be presented at any regular church business meeting for appropriate action.
Section 5 - Termination of Membership:
Membership in this church may be terminated upon request or circumstance in one of the following ways.
A. By Death
B. By Letter: A member shall, upon that member's request, be dismissed to the fellowship of another Christian church by letter of transfer or recommendation. Letters will be granted to other churches upon request.
C. By Discipline: Refer to Section 4A. The Board of Elders may restore membership to any person whose membership has been terminated by discipline, given that there is evidence of the excluded person's repentance and reconciliation.
D. By Request: Upon a member’s request, his or her name shall be removed from the church roll.
ARTICLE III - BOARD OF ELDERS AND PASTORAL STAFF
Section 1 - Board of Elders
A. General: The Board of Elders shall act as the executive board of the Church and shall have the rights and privileges granted to Boards of Directors or similar bodies under Colorado non-profit corporation law. The Board of Elders is a group of specially called and commissioned men with a great desire to lead and feed the flock of God. They are initiated by the Holy Spirit, confirmed by prayer, and qualified through the consistent testimony of a pure life in the eyes of all. The position of Eldership is viewed with great gravity as one of the highest callings within the Church. The Board of Elders shall elect, from within their membership, one Elder to serve as Chairman of the Board. The Chairman shall be responsible for establishing agendas and running the meetings of the Board of Elders. The Chairman shall, in the absence of the Moderator, perform all duties and have all authority of that officer.
B. Responsibility: The Church recognizes the extreme importance of biblical and spiritual leadership needed to assist the Pastoral Staff in the shepherding of this Church. The Elders shall specifically share with the Pastoral Staff the responsibility of promoting and upholding a high level of biblical spirituality among the membership. Their authority over the Church should not be by force or dictatorial power, but by precept and example (Hebrews 13:7). They are to provide encouragement and support for the Pastoral staff in all aspects of their ministry. The Board of Elders shall provide spiritual oversight of all church activities to ensure that biblical principles and understanding are adhered to (Acts 20:28). The Board of Elders shall approve all church policies (Acts 15:22), ordain others (1 Timothy 4:14), rule, teach, and preach (1 Timothy 5:17), exhort and refute (Titus 1:9). Elders may assist the pastoral staff in the administering of ordinances, preaching from the pulpit or teaching in any other capacity. Any official action taken by the Board of Elders shall be by unanimous consent except for action that concerns another member of the Elder Board. In such a case that Elder will not have a vote.
C. Qualification: Like the Pastoral staff the Elders shall strive to exemplify the standards of I Timothy 3:1-7. The Elders shall personally adopt and obey the Statement of Faith and Church Covenant and shall be in full agreement with the Constitution and Bylaws and substantial agreement with the policies of this church.
D. Selection of Elders:
E. Term: Spiritual maturity is neither gained nor lost in the appointment to a position on any board or council. All Elders must continue to meet the qualifications of the Word of God (1 Timothy 3: 1-7, and Titus 1:5-9).
1. The term of Eldership shall be three years. Election of Elders shall be staggered such that continuity and experience are retained on the board at all times.
2. An Elder may serve no more than two consecutive terms, after which at least one year must elapse before being eligible for selection again to the Board, with the exception of the Senior Pastor who, once an Elder, shall remain an Elder for his full tenure.
3. The position and responsibility of Eldership may be dissolved at any time by the following:
b. Moving from the area
d. Physically incapable of fulfilling duties
e. Removal in accordance with the disciplinary actions of the Board of Elders per Article II, Section 4 of the Bylaws. Such removal requires the unanimous vote of the remaining Elders; the Elder in question may not vote.
4. In case of a vacancy on the Board of Elders during a term, the position shall be filled through the normal Elder selection process as outlined in Article III, Section D. The newly selected Elder shall fill the balance of the vacated term. If the balance of the term is < 1 year, it shall not count as a full term for purposes of E.2 above.
F. Accountability: Persons selected to the position of Elder shall submit themselves to the other members of the Board of Elders for mutual accountability and commit themselves to pray for, encourage, and affirm one another. They shall also commit to continued spiritual growth through study, dialogue, seeking the spiritual gifts and self-discipline. The spiritual well-being of this Church corporately and individually shall be their primary concern.
Section 2 – Pastoral Staff
A. Responsibility: The responsibilities of all Pastoral Staff shall be determined by the Board of Elders including the Senior or Lead Pastor. It should be noted that the Board of Elders may require attendance of any pastoral staff to the regular Board of Elder meetings even prior to their selection as an Elder.
B. Qualification: As spiritual shepherds of this Church, it is imperative that the Pastoral Staff earnestly strive to exemplify the standards established in I Timothy 3:1-7. They shall be an ordained minister or a minister eligible for ordination from a Christian organization that subscribes to the beliefs of this Church. The Pastoral Staff shall personally adopt and obey the Statement of Faith and Church Covenant and shall be in full agreement with the Constitution and Bylaws and substantial agreement with the policies of this Church.
C. Calling a Pastor:
1. Candidate(s) for Pastoral Staff shall be selected by the Board of Elders.
2. The decision to extend a call and offer a contract shall be by secret ballot and shall require at least a three-fourths majority vote of the eligible church members present and voting at a special meeting publicized by a notice mailed or delivered to the membership at least two weeks prior to the meeting.
3. The terms of the call of the Pastor’s contract shall be stated in the minutes.
D. Dissolution of Relationship:
1. The pastoral relationship may be dissolved at any time by the Pastor’s resignation.
2. The pastoral relationship may be dissolved by secret ballot and shall require a majority vote of the eligible church members present and voting at a special meeting called per Article V, Section 2, except that this meeting shall be publicized by a notice mailed or delivered to the membership at least four weeks prior to the meeting.
ARTICLE IV – OFFICERS
Section 1 – General: The officers of the Church shall be Moderator, Clerk, Treasurer, and a Financial Secretary.
Section 2 – Qualification and Election: All officers shall have been active members of this church in good standing for a period of at least one year. All officers shall be appointed by the Board of Elders. The officers shall be presented for affirmation at the church Annual Meeting.
Section 3 – Term of Service: All officers are elected for one year.
Section 4 – Termination of Officers:
A. Any officer who, for a period of three months, shall fail to faithfully perform the duties pertaining to his office, as determined by the Board of Elders, may be removed from office by the Board of Elders.
B. The Board of Elders has the power for good and sufficient cause to remove any officer from office.
C. Resignation of officers shall be in writing to the Board of Elders and effective on the date specified in the resignation.
Section 5 - Filling Vacated Positions: If any office becomes vacant, it shall be filled by the Board of Elders. The person so elected shall serve for the unexpired term of the predecessor.
Section 6 - Duties
A. The Moderator shall preside at all church business meetings. The Moderator shall be a member of the Board of Elders. The Moderator shall act as the Chief Executive Officer of the church organization. The Moderator shall serve as an ex-officio member, without right of vote, on all component bodies of the Church (eg. departments, committees, etc.). The Moderator shall be authorized to sign legal documents for and on behalf of the Church. The Moderator shall appoint members of committees and their chairs, except as otherwise provided for herein. The Moderator shall be responsible for informing all newly elected officers of their duties and seeing that any necessary training is accomplished. In the absence of the Moderator, the Chairman of the Board of Elders shall fulfill his duties.
B. The Clerk shall keep a complete record of the transaction of all business at the business meetings of the Church. The Clerk shall notify all officers of their election and appointments. The Clerk shall be the custodian of all church documents and records except those of a financial nature. The Clerk shall preserve on file all significant communications and written reports and give legal notice of all meetings where such notice is required by the Constitution or Bylaws. The Clerk shall assist in preparing necessary denominational reports. The Clerk shall deliver immediately to his/her successor all books and records for which he/she has been responsible as Clerk. The archival functions of this office may be shared by a church Historian if one has been appointed.
C. The office of Treasurer shall be vested in the paid staff bookkeeper position, which position shall be filled with approval of the Elders and which position will report directly to the Lead Pastor. The Treasurer shall keep an accurate record of all receipts and disbursements and have accountability for all monies of the church and shall be subject to regular oversight and accountability (monthly and annually) to both the Board of Elders and the Financial Review Team. The Treasurer shall be responsible for making and recording deposits, disbursing funds in payment of church obligations and accurately recording all transactions in the church books. The Treasurer shall maintain records of financial transactions in conformity with generally accepted accounting practices. The Treasurer shall be responsible for tracking and paying all taxes due (payroll, property, workman’s compensation, etc.), preparing all tax filings and other reports required by current law, and preparing monthly reports for the Board of Elders. These reports shall include standard financial statements such as balance sheets, cash flow, profit & loss, budget versus actual comparisons and any other financial reports as may be required. The Treasurer shall also be responsible for recording weekly tithes, offerings and special-fund designated donations, and ensuring they are properly deposited and accounted for in the budget, attributed to the proper donor, and deposited in the correct bank accounts.
ARTICLE V - FISCAL AND LEGAL PROCEDURES
Section 1 - Fiscal Year
The church fiscal year shall be the calendar year.
Section 2 - Congregational Meetings
A. Business Meetings:
Business may be conducted at any regular congregational meeting except as otherwise specified in the Constitution or Bylaws.
B. Annual Meeting:
The Annual Business Meeting of the church shall be held during the first month of each calendar year at the church's convenience, pursuant to the call of the Board of Elders. Written reports of each department or Church organization and officers shall be submitted to the Church at the Annual Meeting. The annual affirmation of officers shall be held at each Annual Meeting.
C. Special Meetings:
Special meetings of the church may be called at any time by the Pastor, the Moderator, or on the request of the Board of Elders. The church shall be given prior notice of at least one week before a special meeting is to be held unless otherwise required. If, however, action is to be taken on the sale, encumbrance or purchase of real property or on amendments to the Constitution or By-Laws, two weeks prior notice shall be required. At special meetings, only such business as is included in the call shall be transacted.
The right to vote on matters of business in the church shall be vested in its members. Members whose names are on the Inactive Membership List, or who are absent, or who are under the age of 16, may not be voting members.
Section 3 - Indebtedness and Real Estate
The power or authority to borrow money, transfer, sell, or buy real estate for the Church shall be vested in the congregation and requires a 2/3 (two-thirds) majority vote of the qualified voting members present at any special congregational business meeting (Ref. Article V, Sec. 2, Paragraph C.).