Constitution

PREAMBLE

Wye Bible Church places itself under the authority of the Word of God and leadership of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, through the Holy Spirit.

WYE BIBLE CHURCH VISION STATEMENT

Wye Bible’s vision is to: Honor God and lovingly serve our community locally and globally nurturing relationships through a faithful group of believers founded firmly on God’s Word. This can be summarized as follows:

  • Honor God
  • Grow in Faith
  • Serve People
  • Share the Word

WYE BIBLE CHURCH MISSION STATEMENT

Regardless of the cost, by God’s grace, Wye Bible church will:

“Go into all the world and preach the good news…” (Mark 16:15)

“…Prepare God’s people for works of service so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in faith in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature attaining to the fullness of Christ.” (Ephesians 4:12-13)

CORE VALUES

The Bible is our authority. Our only hope for salvation is in Jesus Christ. Everyone is valuable to God. People are more important than programs or possessions. Building strong families is a priority. Spiritual growth is God’s expectation for all believers. All that we have belongs to God. The Great Commission is our responsibility. We love our community. We seek unity in spirit while allowing for diversity in non-essentials.

 

ARTICLE I. FOUNDATIONS OF OUR FAITH

Section 1:  The Holy Bible

The Holy Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God and is the basis for any statement of faith. This church is a congregation of believers in Christ united by covenant for the worship of Almighty God and associated in the faith and the fellowship of His Gospel to practice its precepts and to take the Bible and the Bible alone as the standard by which all matters of belief and conduct are to be tried.Section 1:  The Holy Bible

Section 2:  Statement of Faith

We Believe in the Bible…

God moved the writers of the Old and New Testaments in such a way that all they wrote expresses, without error, God’s thought.  The Bible is God’s inspired Word, inerrant in the original writings.  The Bible is the supreme and final authority for faith and living, and is complete as the revelation of God’s will for salvation.

2 Timothy 3:16-17

We Believe in God…

God our Creator and Sustainer, Judge and Redeemer is Lord and He is Love.  Because He is Lord, He tolerates no rivals.  Because He is Love, He seeks not to coerce but calls us into relationship with Him. In the unity of God are three Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  They are equal in every Divine perfection, but they execute distinct yet harmonious offices in the work of redemption.

Exodus 20:2-3; 1 John 4:8; Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 1:9-11

We Believe in God the Father…

God the Father is infinite, personal Spirit, perfect in holiness, wisdom, power, and love.  He concerns himself mercifully in the affairs of men and women, hears and answers prayer, and saves from sin and death all who come to him through Jesus Christ.

John 4:24, John 15:1; Hebrews 3:4; Revelation 4:11

We Believe in Jesus Christ…

Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten Son, conceived by the Holy Spirit, is the Virgin-born God-Man.  He is undiminished Deity and perfect Humanity.  Although He was sinless, He bore the sins of humankind on the cross and made atonement for them by the shedding of His blood.  He rose from death.  He ascended bodily into Heaven.  He is our Great High Priest and ever lives to intercede for us.  He will return bodily to earth, in power and glory, as our Eternal King.

Colossians 2:9-10; 1 Peter 2:24; Mark 16:6; Acts 1:9-11; Hebrews 7:25

We Believe in the Holy Spirit…

The Holy Spirit is God.  He glorifies Christ.  He indwells each Christian and so gives unity to the Church. He sanctifies the believer and He carries out God’s purposes for both Church and world.

Acts 5:1-8; 1 Corinthians 12:4,7,12-13; John 16:7-15; Galatians 5:22-23; Isaiah 45:1

We Believe in Humanity…

God created people as male and female.  He created both in His image and free from sin.  Adam sinned and brought upon himself and his posterity guilt, death, and condemnation.  We further believe all persons are sinners by nature and choice and are, therefore, spiritually dead and in need of salvation.

Genesis 1:26-28; Romans 5:12, 16

We Believe in Justification…

This is an act of God.  It is not dependent upon any human merit, work or ritual.  In this act, He pardons eternally the guilt of all who have faith in Christ as Savior.  Faith in Christ as Savior means to believe that Christ bore my sins and rose from the dead.

Romans 3:22-26; Ephesians 2:8-9

We Believe in Sanctification…

This is a process by which God restores His image in those whom He has justified.  In this process God is at work in us both to will and to work His good pleasure, and at the same time we Christians are working out our own salvation.  This process will continue until God glorifies us, restoring His image in us.

Philippians 2:12-13; Colossians 3:10

We Believe Christians Are to Be Set Apart…

The supreme task of every believer is to glorify God in life and conduct and be blameless before the world.  Each Christian should be a faithful steward of all possessions and seek to realize in every area of life the full stature of maturity in Christ.

I Peter 1:15-16; Ephesians 4:22-24; I John 1:7

We Believe in the Church…

The Church is the one Body of Christ which consists of all whom God has justified.  The Church expresses itself in local congregations for purposes of worship, teaching, and fellowship; it disperses into the world to evangelize and to do good to all.  The Church practices the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper according to the Lord’s commands.  There is an interdependence of local churches and mutual submission of Christians to each other in love. Each local church is self-governing in function and must be free from interference by any ecclesiastical or political authority.  All men and women are directly responsible to God in matters of faith and life, and they should be free to worship God according to the leading of the Holy Spirit.

1 Corinthians 12:12-13; Hebrews 10:25; Acts 2:42; Matthew 28:20; Galatians 6:10; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26

Acts 4:19-20; Acts 5:29; Acts 23:1; II Corinthians 4:2

We Believe in the World to Come…

Jesus Christ will return to earth.  There will be a resurrection to life for those whom God has justified, and there will be a resurrection to judgment for those whom God has not justified.  Those who rise to judgment will be sentenced to eternal hell.  Those who rise to life will enter the eternal presence of God as the perfected sons of God.

Acts 1:9-11; John 5:28-29; Revelation 20:15; 1 John 3:2

 

ARTICLE II. AUTHORITY

Section 1: Church Authority

Jesus Christ rules and governs His people and directs them towards the fulfillment of God’s purposes. All power and authority within the church derive from Jesus Christ as the head.  Ephesians 1:22-23

In matters of interpretation, the Elders are the final authority for this church and its practices. Acts20:28

Section 2: Religious Authority

The church embraces the Bible as its religious authority in matters of faith and practice.

Section 3:   Church Policy

The government of this church is vested in the members who compose it. It is subject to the control of no other ecclesiastical body, but it recognizes and sustains the obligations of mutual counsel and cooperation which are common among evangelical churches, insofar as is practical, this church will cooperate with and support the other evangelical churches.

Church policy is guided by this Constitution and any additional Wye Bible Church bylaws and procedures maintained in separate documents.

 

ARTICLE III: MEMBERSHIP

Section 1:  Membership

Membership in Wye Bible Church is open to all believers who confess Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, and who are in agreement with Wye Bible Church’s “Statement of Faith”.

Honorary Emeritus membership, without voting privileges, may be granted to long-term faithful members.

The Elders are responsible for maintaining an accurate and up-to-date Membership Roll. They may affirm the Membership Roll as “current and up-to-date” by a resolution of the Elder Board which must be read at the first congregational business meeting of the calendar year and by displaying the current Membership Roll at the same meeting. Objections or questions will be reviewed by the Elders at their next regularly scheduled meeting, followed by a report to the interested parties, or congregation (if appropriate).

Section 2:  Voting Privileges

Voting privileges are restricted to members over the age of eighteen (18) who are regular attendees.

Section 3:  Applications for Membership

Requests for membership are to be made to a pastor, an elder, or a deacon.  Upon making such request, individuals will be given a Membership Profile form (to be returned to the church office or pastor), a copy of the Wye Bible Church constitution and the Statement of Faith.  After returning the Membership Profile, a meeting is to be scheduled where at least two elders are present and where the prospective member(s) acknowledges they subscribe to the statement of faith and testify to their faith in Jesus Christ. The membership profile is to be signed by the attending Pastors/Elders and a copy placed on file with the church office.

Section 4:  Admission of Applicants

Those desiring membership will present themselves, following the aforementioned meeting with the elders, at a worship service designated by the senior pastor and elders.  During the designated worship service applicants must publicly affirm their commitment to Jesus Christ by declaration or in response to questioning. They are then acknowledged as members by the church leader and welcomed by the congregation. [Under extreme circumstances (such as ill health), the Elders may stand in for the new member.]

Anyone who was previously a member in good standing but who was removed from the Membership Roll can be reinstated by submitting a letter to the Elder Board stating their desire to be added to the Membership Roll.  The Elders may choose to meet with the returning member(s).  Upon approval by the Elder Board, which will be noted in the minutes, said person(s) will be reinstated.

All pastors and their wives become de facto members of the congregation upon acceptance of their calling to service at Wye Bible Church.

Section 5:  Dismissal of Members

A. Discipline

The purpose of church discipline is for correction, reproof and restoration.  Members of Wye Bible Church who err in doctrine or conduct may be subject to dismissal, according to Matthew 18:15-18 and in the spirit of Galatians 6:1.  However, before such dismissal, it is the duty of any member of this church who has knowledge of erring members heresy or misconduct to warn and to correct such erring member in private; seeking his or her repentance and restoration. Good faith attempts must be made as outlined in Matthew 18:15-18.   If the erring member does not heed this warning, then the warning member is again to go to the erring member, accompanied by one or two witnesses.  The purpose is to warn, correct, encourage repentance, and restore the erring brother or sister to fellowship.  If the erring member still refuses to heed this warning, his or her conduct will be brought to the attention of the elders.  To maintain purity in the church (1 Corinthians 5:6), he or she may be publicly dismissed.

B. Non-attendance

Members of Wye Bible Church will be encouraged to attend services regularly.  Any physically able member, who has not attended worship services of the church for a period of approximately six (6) months is to be referred to the Board of Elders. If the person has moved from the area, they are removed from the active Membership Roll. If the person is still in the area then, if possible or reasonable, at least two elders are to visit the member to determine his or her attitude toward restoration to active fellowship.  If the member does not intend to attend services, or if he or she gives no evidence of desiring to be restored to active fellowship, as determined by the Elders, his or her name will be removed from the Membership Roll. Missionaries, college students, those serving in the military and others with a like reason are exempted from this action. The decision to visit or not visit non-attending members, and the outcome of Elders visits and decisions regarding members must be noted in the Elders meeting minutes.

 

ARTICLE IV: ELDERS

Section 1:  The Elders

A.  All full time serving pastors of Wye Bible Church are elders.

B.  Pastor(s) are excluded from voting on their own salaries, their own termination or dismissal, and may not serve as officers on any board, committee or the corporation. Pastor(s) are not subject to the term limitations of the remaining elders.

C.  The Elder Board preferably consists of three (3) or more men; elected and/or confirmed by a majority vote at the first congregational business meeting of the calendar year.  All officers, councils, committees, ministries, and staff are responsible to the elders

Section 2:  Qualifications

Each of the elders must be an active member of Wye Bible Church.  To the secular world, a man may qualify for public leadership despite scandals in his private life, providing his public “image” is acceptable.  To the Christian such double standards are not possible.  The Bible makes it clear, in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:6-9, an elder’s private life, as well as his public life, must be scrutinized and found exemplary.

To qualify as an elder, a man’s public and private life, must be characterized by the qualities found in the Bible.  Not a single quality may be omitted and remain scriptural.  If a recognized elder fails, without repentance, in any quality, he must be removed from the office of elder.

Section 3:  Duties

The elders are responsible for shepherding and protecting the flock.  Specific duties of the Office of Elder are:

A. To rule (1 Timothy 3:4-5, 5:17, Hebrews 13:7, 17).  In matters not specifically settled by Scripture, yet in the mind of the assembly, and need to be officially decided, it is the duty of the elders to decide in such matters.  Since these decisions affect the whole church and since the elders must “give account” to the Chief Shepherd, Jesus Christ, they will discharge this duty prayerfully, thoughtfully asking wisdom of God.

B.  To be responsible for and exercise final authority on the financial matters of the church.

C.  To elect a chairman and vice-chairman from the elders for the purpose of conducting elder meetings.

D.  To provide for the discipline of erring members, when such is deemed necessary, as understood from Scripture, while striving for reconciliation.

E.  To hear and consider reports and recommendations submitted by pastor, councils, committees, and staff.

F.  To assist the pastor(s) in the administration of all ordinances.

G.  To suggest the appointment and removal of a pastor.

H.  To appoint and remove such officers and staff as may be deemed appropriate.

Section 4:  Officers of the Elders

A.  Chairman – The chairman is to preside at elder meetings, which are to be conducted according to scriptural principles, as set forth in Philippians 2:2-8.  In the absence of the pastor(s), the chairman will be responsible for the leadership of the church service. The chairman of the elder board will also be named to the board for the Articles of Incorporation of Wye Bible Church.

B.  Vice-Chairman– The vice-chairman will assume the above-enumerated duties of the chairman in his absence. The Vice-Chairman will be responsible to have minutes of the elders meetings recorded, presenting the minutes of meetings for approval at the next elder meeting, and making edits as necessary. Minutes will include, but not be limited to, the topic and outcome of any required votes and a permanent record be maintained. The vice-chairman of the elder board will also be named to the board for the Articles of Incorporation of Wye Bible Church.

Section 5:  Meeting and Quorum

The elders will conduct regular meetings, preferably not less than once a month, and special meetings at such other times as called for by an elder.  A majority of the elder membership will constitute a quorum for the purpose of conducting church business, with the following exception: Whenever the business of the elders concern calling or dismissing a pastor, a quorum consist of not less than two-thirds (2/3) of all elders.

Section 6:  Decisions of the Elders

Decisions are to be reached after prayerful consideration in a spirit of humility, with each elder regarding one another before himself.  The elders will strive for a unanimous agreement when dealing with issues.  If the elders come to an impasse when voting on an issue, a two-thirds (2/3) majority will rule.

 

ARTICLE V: DEACONS

Section 1:  The Deacons

The deacons are individuals whose service has been recognized as exemplary.  Deacons will assist the elders and the pastor(s) in shepherding the saints, assist with communion, assist with baptismal services, aid in the general spiritual care of the church and perform other duties as directed by the elders.

It is preferable for the deacons to consist of a minimum of four (4) men. They are to be selected and voted upon using the Wye Bible Church election process (see Article IX).

Section 2:  Qualifications of a Deacon

Each of the deacons must be an active member of Wye Bible Church and possess the qualifications in I Timothy 3:8-13.

To the secular world, a man may qualify for public leadership despite scandals in his private life, providing his public “image” is acceptable.  To the Christian such double standards are not possible.  The Bible makes it clear a deacon’s private life, as well as his public life, must be scrutinized and found exemplary.

To qualify as a deacon, a man’s public and private life, must be characterized by the qualities found in the Bible.  Not a single quality may be omitted and remain scriptural.  If a recognized deacon fails, without repentance, in any quality, he must be removed from the office of deacon.

Section 3:  Duties

Under the direction of the elders and oversight of the congregation the deacons are:

A.  To ensure that the pastor(s) is able to spend time with the Lord in order to fulfill his role as the spiritual overseer and edifier of the church of God. Acts 6:4

B.  To provide for the physical needs of the body of believers, in particular the widows. Acts 6:1, James 1:27

C.  To elect a chairman, vice-chairman, secretary and treasurer from the deacons for the purpose of conducting deacon meetings.

D.  To direct the financial matters of the church.

E.  To exercise general oversight of church property.

F.  To acquire and/or dispose of all real or personal church property of any kind.

G.  To ensure that there are church ushers, greeters at the doors, offering collectors, and to assist the pastor(s) and elders in the services in such matters as the pastor(s) and elders deem necessary.

H.  To provide for the safety and security of all church property.

I.  To provide financial accountability. The financial records shall be audited annually by someone in the church who is qualified but not presently involved in the finances of the church, or by an outside accounting firm, and presented to the Elder Board who shall present it to the Body at a congregational meeting. At no time shall the Elder or Deacon Board’s borrow money for any reason without approval by a majority vote of the congregation.

Section 4:  Officers of the Deacons

A.  Chairman – The chairman is to preside at deacon meetings, which are to be conducted according to scriptural principles, as set forth in Philippians 2:2-8. The chairman of the deacon board will also be named to the board for the Articles of Incorporation of Wye Bible Church.

B.  Vice-Chairman– The vice-chairman will assume the above duties of the chairman in his absence. The vice-chairman of the deacon board will also be named to the board for the Articles of Incorporation of Wye Bible Church.

C.  Secretary – The secretary will be responsible to have minutes of the deacons meetings recorded, presenting the minutes of meetings for approval at the next deacon meeting, and making edits as necessary. Minutes will include, but not be limited to, the topic and outcome of any required votes and a permanent record be maintained.

D.   Treasurer – The treasurer is responsible for all monies collected by the church and disbursement of monies weekly. He will make financial reports each month to the Elder and Deacon Boards.  The treasurer will provide a financial report at the first congregational business meeting of the calendar year.

Section 5:  Meeting and Quorum

The deacons will conduct regular meetings, preferably once a month, and special meetings at such other times as called for by the pastor, elders, or chairman of the deacons.  A majority of the deacon membership will constitute a quorum for the purpose of conducting church business.

Section 6:  Decisions of the Deacons

Decisions are to be reached after prayerful consideration in a spirit of humility, with each deacon regarding one another before himself.  The deacons will strive for a unanimous agreement when dealing with issues.  If the deacons come to an impasse when voting on an issue, a two-thirds (2/3) majority will rule.

 

ARTICLE VI: DEACON AND ELDER TERM OF OFFICE

An elder or deacon will be ordained to their position by God, and recognized by election by a majority of members of the congregation present at a designated meeting through a vote. (See Article IX).  Once called, elected and inducted into office, an elder or a deacon will serve in office for a term of three years; less if he personally believes the Lord is leading him away from the responsibility.

At the conclusion of an elder or deacon’s three-year term of service, he may place his name on the ballot for a second three-year term in that office.  It is not necessary that he again be nominated and interviewed.  After two successive terms in office, it is required that elders and deacons take a full sabbatical year from their service.  At the conclusion of that sabbatical year, a member of the congregation may nominate him again.

 

ARTICLE VII: OTHER COUNCILS AND COMMITTEES

Section 1:  Councils and Committees

To enable efficient handling of the elder/deacon matters, the elders and deacons may appoint various councils and committees from within its membership, the staff, and from the church membership at large.  These councils and committees will perform tasks solely in accordance with the duties and with powers specifically delegated by the elders or deacons.  Councils and committees will exist for the period specified by the elders or deacons.  The general function of councils and committees are: 

A.  To bring considered recommendations to the elders or deacons concerning ministries.

B.  To provide a wider base of counsel to the elders or deacons having the oversight of specific ministries.

Section 2:  Ministry and Teaching

Ministry leadership and teaching is open to all persons who confess Christ as their Lord and Savior, and who are in agreement with Wye Bible Church’s “Statement of Faith”.  The senior pastor in conjunction with the elders may delegate authority to major ministry heads to assign individuals to teaching positions. The ultimate responsibility will rest on the senior pastor.  Leaders also must meet the following requirements:

Director of Little Lamb Preschool: Must be a member in good standing of Wye Bible Church

Major Ministry Head (VBS, AWANA, Children’s Church, etc.): It is preferred that leaders in these positions be members of Wye Bible Church, but the Pastors and Elders may waive this requirement under special circumstances based on the candidates past involvement at Wye Bible Church. The Pastor(s) and the Elders must, at a formal meeting, agree to allow a non-member to head a major ministry. The vote will follow established voting procedures for the Elder Board and be recorded in the meeting minutes.

Minor Ministry Head (Fellowship outreach, Christmas outreach, Thanksgiving outreach, etc.): It is preferred that leaders in these positions be members of Wye Bible Church but it is not required. These types of ministries can be filled by the Pastor(s) after conferring with the Elders. Ultimately it will be the Pastor(s) decision as to whether a candidate is qualified to head a minor ministry.

Teachers: It is preferred that leaders in these positions be members of Wye Bible Church but it is not required. Teachers must be professing Christians and have accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior. Teaching positions fall under many categories (small group leaders, Sunday School, Bible studies, Youth studies, etc.).

A.  Teacher Qualifications

(a) Individual must be in Biblical good-standing with the church.

(b) Individual must maintain regular church attendance.

(c) Individual must have a willingness to serve and to teach.

(d) Individual must adhere to, agree with and be able to sign a copy of the church’s Statement of Faith saying that they will teach in the perimeters of the Biblical convictions of this church.

(e) Individual should have a general knowledge of the Bible.

 

B.  Duties of a Teacher

(a) Each teacher will be responsible for the overall organization, structure, and teaching of their class/group.

(b) Curriculum will be approved by the Elder Board.

(c) They will prepare as diligently as possible to teach biblically sound doctrine.

 

Participants in Major and Minor Ministries (helpers at AWANA, VBS, Youth group, Clothing gift-a-way, etc.): Both members and non-members can participate in helping with major and minor ministries after an interview with the ministry leader. If the ministry leader has any question(s), they are to confer with the pastor that best oversees the ministry’s objective.

Staff of Little Lamb Preschool (aides, teachers, support staff, etc.): The staffing of the LLP will be at the discretion of the LLP Director. Unlike the Director, the staff need not be members of Wye Bible Church, but they are expected to be professing Christians who acknowledge Jesus Christ as their Savior. The Senior Pastor and the Elder board combined will reserve the right to overrule the Director and have ultimate authority in staffing matters at LLP. It is not expected that this authority will be exercised very often and should be done so with much deliberation and consideration.

Worship Team (vocalist and instrumentalist): While it is preferred that those participating on the Worship Team be members of Wye Bible Church it is not required. All worship team participants should be professing Christians and have accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior. Judgment as to whether someone is qualified or not to participate will be decided by the Worship Leader and the Pastor(s).

ARTICLE VIII: CONGREGATIONAL MEETINGS

 

Section 1:  Congregrational Meetings

There will be semi-annual scheduled congregational meetings throughout the year. The first semi-annual meeting will be held on the third Sunday in January, circumstances permitting. The second semi-annual meeting will be held preferably on the third Sunday in July, circumstances permitting. Notice of the time and place of the meetings, as determined by the elders will be provided in verbal, written or electronic format not less than ten (10) days or more than forty (40) days prior to the meeting. In the unlikely event of a regular church service being cancelled, the scheduled meetings will be held at the next Sunday worship service following the cancelled service. It is the responsibility of members to register their current contact information with the church office.

Section 2:  Special Congregational Meetings

Notice of special congregational meetings will be provided in verbal, written or electronic format not less than seven (7) days prior to the meeting. The notice will specify the date, time, place and the general nature of the business to be transacted. In the unlikely event of a regular church service being cancelled, the special congregational meeting will be held on the first Sunday following the notification when a Sunday worship service is held. It is the responsibility of members to register their current contact information with the church office.

Section 3:  Informational Congregational Meetings

The pastor(s) and elders may, at times, need to call an urgent informational congregational meeting. The date and time of informational meetings will be determined by the pastor(s) and/or the elders. Informational meetings will not require a congregational vote and, therefore, will not require prior notice to the congregation.

Section 4:  Moderator

The moderator of all congregational meetings will be appointed by the elders.

Section 5:  Quorum

All members present at congregational meetings, or special meetings, will constitute a quorum.

 

ARTICLE IX: ELECTIONS

Section 1:  Time

The election, or confirmation, of the elders and deacons of Wye Bible Church enumerated in Articles IV and V of this constitution will be at the first congregational business meeting of the calendar year.

Section 2:  Mode

All elections will be by written ballot.  Proxy voting will be allowed only in cases of a family emergency or confinement resulting from illness or accident and must be in writing.

Section 3:  Nominations

Each year, the elders and deacons will announce the number of officers needed for the coming year at the second semi-annual meeting. Members are encouraged to speak to those men they wish to nominate for elder and/or deacon to determine their willingness to serve. Written suggestions for nominees should be given to the elders and/or deacons.

The elders and deacons will review the list of suggested nominees to their respective boards and applications will be sent out to those men who meet the Biblical guidelines. Applications should be completed and turned into the elders.

The elders and deacons, with a pastor, will interview those who have accepted nominations to their respective boards and their spouses.  The names of those men recommended by the elders will be communicated to the church in verbal, written or electronic format. Any questions or concerns regarding the nominees should be promptly brought to the attention of the Elders.

Voting will be by written ballot and will take place at a scheduled congregational meeting. Elected officers will be placed into service following this meeting.

The dates for completion of each step of the nomination process will be determined by the elders by the second semi-annual congregational meeting of the calendar year.

Section 4:  Interim Vacancies

In the event any of the elective offices become vacant during the interim between annual elections, the elders will have the authority to fill such vacancy with qualified men for the remaining term. Elders and or deacons on a sabbatical year may be asked and allowed to fill an interim vacancy.

 

ARTICLE X: THE PASTOR(S)

Section 1:  Selection/Dismissal

To maintain unity in the church body, the pastor(s) shall be selected or dismissed by the current/remaining elders, and confirmed by the members of the church at a special congregational meeting.  Such confirmation will require two-thirds (2/3) majority of all votes cast.

Section 2:  Qualifications

The pastor(s) must have the gift of pastor and teacher.  (Ephesians 4:11-13). The pastor(s) must lead an exemplary life and meet the same qualifications as an elder as stated in Article IV, Section 2.

Section 3:  Duties

The pastor(s is an ex officio member of all councils and committees and, as such, have exactly the same rights,  privileges, and responsibilities as do all other members, including the right to vote.

The pastor may appoint a Wye Bible Church member to represent the pastor’s views at councils and committees which the pastor may be unable to attend. The pastoral representative will not have the right to vote.

The pastor(s) will arrange, and is responsible for all public and regular services of the church.  He, with the elders, is responsible for the general oversight of the spiritual welfare of the church.

Other pastors’ duties will be outlined in their job descriptions.

 

ARTICLE XI: CHURCH ORDINANCES

We believe that Jesus Christ instituted two ordinances for the church: the Lord’s Supper to commemorate His death until He returns; and Water Baptism, which is a symbol to the world of what Jesus Christ has done in the lives of believers (1Corinthians 11: 23-24, Romans 6:4-5; Matthew 26: 26-28, 28:19-20)

The Lord’s Supper and Water Baptism will be celebrated at such times and services as determined by the pastor(s).

 

ARTICLE XII: ARTICLES OF INCORPORATION

Pursuant to the Section 5, Subtitle 3 of the Corporations and Associations Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland, the Wye Bible Church will annually review the Articles of Incorporation and amend as necessary this document including but not limited to the signatories and file any updated information to the State of Maryland. The Chairman and Vice-Chairman of both the Elder and Deacon Boards will be signatories on the Article of Incorporation. The Resident Agent will be the current acting Wye Bible Church secretary.

 

ARTICLE XIII: AMENDMENTS

Recommendations for amendments to this constitution must be submitted to the elders in writing. The elders will review recommendations for amendments for consistency with Biblical doctrine at their next monthly meeting. If there is no conflict with Biblical doctrine, the elders will request two or three Wye Bible Church members to meet with one or more elders to discuss the recommendations and determine whether the recommendation or variation thereof should be presented to the congregation for a vote. If this collected review determines the recommendation is unnecessary, an elder will meet with the member who made the suggested recommendation and report the findings of the review. The recommendation for amendment and the outcome of any vote or decision to dismiss the recommendation will be documented in the minutes of the elders meeting.

Amendments to this Constitution may be adopted by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the members present and voting at any semi-annual or special business meeting.  Notice of the proposed amendment will be given to the membership of the church in written, verbal or electronic format for two weeks prior to the meeting. In the unlikely event of a regular church service being cancelled, notice will be given and/or the meeting will be held at the next regular Sunday morning worship service following the cancelled worship service(s).  It is the responsibility of members to register their current contact information with the church office.

 

ARTICLE XIV: BYLAWS and POLICIES

Both Wye Bible Church Bylaws and all Policies of individual ministries within Wye Bible Church are to be maintained in printed form and electronically in the church office. They are intended to reflect our beliefs and detail our procedures.  They may not contradict or otherwise conflict with this Constitution.  In the event of any such conflict, the Constitution takes precedent and supersedes all other documents.  By-Laws and Policies are governing documents which are meant to aid us as we express our sincerely held beliefs in the church and ministerial settings.

Bylaws may be created or modified by the Elders and Deacons.  Final decision rests with the Elder Board.  Unlike the Constitution, Bylaws are intended to be more flexible and responsive to changing environments and situations.  The Congregation must be notified of any changes and/or additions to the Bylaws by verbal, written, or electronic format. The changes and/or additions will become effective ten days after said notification.  Any church member may lodge an objection to such changes and additions by written format to the church office.  Upon review of the matter, the Elders will communicate their final decision to the member.

Policies may be put in place by different ministries within Wye Bible Church.  Any such policies must receive approval of the Elders and Deacons by majority vote, and become effective immediately.  Policies delineate the practices of that particular ministry and are not binding on other ministries within Wye Bible Church.

 

ARTICLE XV: ADOPTION

This Constitution was adopted on (insert date) by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the membership of Wye Bible Church at a duly called meeting and supersedes any other Constitution of Wye Bible Church.

Last Modified/Approved – August, 2017