GA-1728

(Operational, Policy and Organizational)

PROPOSED AMENDMENT TO
THE DESIGN OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH (DISCIPLES OF CHRIST):
REMOVAL OF CONGREGATIONS FROM THE YEARBOOK AND DIRECTORY
FOR CAUSE OR INACTIVITY

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WHEREAS, at the 2005 General Assembly in Portland, Oregon, numerous amendments were made to The Design of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ); and

WHEREAS, during the writing of those amendments, language regarding the “ten-year rule” which allowed for the removal of congregations from the Yearbook after ten years of no congregational activity being reported to the Yearbook, was inadvertently dropped from endnote 1 of the revised Design; and

WHEREAS, both the College of Regional Ministers and the Administrative Committee have asked the Governance Committee of the General Board to restore that language regarding the removal of congregations to The Design; and

WHEREAS, the College of Regional Ministers further requested that due to this information being vital to a region’s role in certifying and decertifying a congregation to the Yearbook, it would be helpful for this language to reside in the body of The Design instead of being part of an endnote; and

WHEREAS, the Governance Committee is charged with reviewing The Design and other governance documents for suggested changes and modifications;[1]

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the 2017 General Assembly of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) meeting July 8-12, 2017, in Indianapolis, Indiana approve the amendments to The Design as recommended by the College of Regional Ministers and presented on the following pages.

General Board of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)

The General Board recommends that the General Assembly APPROVE GA-1728. (Discussion time: 12 minutes)

 

Redline Paragraph 9 and Endnote 1 of The Design.

  1. All congregations listed in the latest Year Book and Directory of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) shall be recognized congregations of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Other congregations desiring recognition and congregations desiring to withdraw from recognition in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) shall follow established procedures for Year Book and Directory listing. i (see note) Congregations that follow the procedures for listing after the publication of the latest Year Book and Directory and that are recorded in the Year Book and Directory office shall also be recognized congregations.

i. Procedures for Yearbook and Directory listing

a. A congregation seeking recognition takes congregational action expressing its desire and intention to be a recognized congregation of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and be listed in the Year Book and Directory.

b. The congregation then provides its regional office with a copy of a document containing the declaration of its desire and intention to be a recognized congregation of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). (The document may be the congregation’s charter, constitution, bylaws, or a notarized statement of the congregation’s action.)

c. Regional endorsement of the congregation’s request for recognition and listing, attested by the regional minister, is sent to the Office of the General Minister and President for filing with the Year Book and Directory.

b. Once a congregation has been listed, it can be omitted from the Year Book and Directory if:

i. the The congregation has taken action to withdraw as a recognized congregation of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the Office of the General Minister and President has received a notarized statement from the congregation of its action, which the regional minister has certified.; or

ii. There has been no congregational activity reported in the Year Book and Directory of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for a period of five (5) consecutive years and the regional minister certifies that the congregation does not participate in or contribute to area, regional or general church program(s), including participation in Disciples Mission Fund.

iii. A congregation may also be omitted from the Year Book and Directory by action of a region if the region can demonstrate actions or statements on the part of the congregation that are deemed detrimental to the covenantal relationship with all expressions of the church, as may be determined by the General Board. When a region takes action to omit a congregation for either of the above stated reasons, the region will send notification of the intent to remove the congregation’s listing to the congregation via certified letter. If within 30 days of the notification the congregation makes no objection to its removal from the listing, then the removal will be final.

iv. Regardless of which entity initiates the action, reasonable attempts will be made to renew the relationship between the congregation and the region before removal is finalized. Once the removal is final, the region will notify the congregation that it has been removed from the Year Book and Directory. A congregation may appeal the region’s action in accordance with paragraphs 17 & 66 of this Design.

[1] General Board Standing Rules 6.2.5

One Response to “GA-1728”

  1. by Stanley Cavitt:

    Now all we as Disciples need to do is figure out how to get the church staff to report complete, accurate statistical information on their churches to the Disciples Yearbook and Directory every year. No more rounding off numbers, no more fudging the church health data to reflect wishful thinking, and no more ignoring the request for data. Shamefully, it’s sometimes the pastor who does the guessing (other churches do it, why can’t we?).

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