We, baptized members of the Church of Christ, responding in faith to the call of the Holy Spirit through the Gospel, desiring to unite together to preach the Word, administer the sacraments, and carry out God’s mission, do hereby adopt this constitution and solemnly pledge ourselves to be governed by its provisions. In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit…
Guide to Governing Documents
This guide was developed to help members understand the general purpose and structure of the constitution, bylaws and continuing resolutions of Our Saviour Lutheran Church, as well as some important processes pertaining to their maintenance.
Taken together, we refer to the constitution, bylaws, and continuing resolutions as our Congregation’s governing documents, and we’ll review each of them as a part of this document.
Constitution, Bylaws and Continuing Resolutions
Our congregation’s constitution forms the foundation of our governing documents. It describes who we are, what we believe, how we are structured, and how we accomplish our work as a congregation. It exists to provide ongoing guidance to our congregation and its members on the most fundamental principles of our faith journey together.
Three Documents in One
Something worth noting about our governing documents is that while they include constitutional provisions, bylaws, and continuing resolutions, they are not divided into separate writings. In the ELCA Model Constitution approach, all three types of provision are presented together as a part of the main body of one single document. This method has the advantage of keeping all the information related to a particular topic together in one place, making it more usable, even for readers who may not regularly access its contents. A brief description of each type of provision follows.
Preview of the Table of Contents:
- Confession of Faith
- Nature of the Church
- Statement of Purpose
- Powers of the Congregation
- Church Affiliation
- Property Ownership
- Rostered Minister
- Congregation Meeting
- Congregation Council and Trustees
- Congregation Committees
- Organizations Within This Congregation
- Discipline of Members and Adjudication
- Bylaws (Rules)
- Continuing Resolutions (Rules)
- Indemnification Bylaws (Individual) Continuing Resolutions (Individual)