Gambrell Baptist Association Constitution

CONSTITUTION
of the
GAMBRELL BAPTIST ASSOCIATION

 

ARTICLE I - NAME AND NATURE

The name of this Association shall be the Gambrell Baptist Association, cooperating with the Southern Baptist Convention, the Baptist conventions in Texas, and / or other Baptist entities and organizations.

 

ARTICLE II - PURPOSE

Section 1.  The purpose of this Association shall be to encourage and to inspire cooperating churches in unified effort for Evangelism, Missions, Christian Education and Benevolences; to uphold the doctrines and principles of our Baptist faith as stated in the Baptist Faith and Message, adopted by the Southern Baptist Convention in 1925 ( and/or any subsequent revisions); and to promote a spirit of fellowship and harmony of action in all the work of the denomination.

Section 2.  This organization shall be only a medium through which Baptist churches may harmoniously cooperate in promoting the work and purposes set forth in the constitution.  It shall have no power over, nor attempt to exercise, any authority over a church in such a way as to limit the sovereignty of the church.

 

ARTICLE III - MEMBERSHIP

Section 1.  This body shall be composed of messengers elected from the churches sound in doctrine and practice which are voluntarily cooperating with the work of the Association.  When such messengers are approved by the Association, they shall be seated and entitled to participate in the affairs of the body.

Section 2. Each church shall be entitled to elect, on the basis of resident membership, three (3) messengers; and one (1) additional messenger for each fifty (50) members or fraction thereof over the first fifty (50) members, provided that no church shall be entitled to more than ten (10) messengers.

Section 3.  The Association shall have the right and authority to refuse recognition and cooperation with any church deemed unsound in faith or practice, and to continue such refusel until the irregularities shall have been corrected.  During the time said church is suspended, her messengers shall be refused seats and not permitted to discuss or vote on any matter before the Association.  Such charge against a church must be brought to the Executive Board by a special investigation committee, appointed by the Moderator, as authorized by the Executive Board, and a vote taken by the Executive Board on the recommendation of the committee.  A two-thirds majority of members present and voting shall be necessary to declare suspension of the offending church until such irregularities are corrected and such suspension is lifted by a two-thirds majority vote of the Executive Board members present and voting.

 

ARTICLE IV - LETTERS AND STATISTICS

Each church shall be expected to present a standard Associational letter to the Associational Clerk no later than October 10th.

 

ARTICLE V - MEETINGS

Section 1. Annual Meetings -- The Association shall hold annual meetings to continue until its business is finished at such time and place as the Association from year to year may decide.  In case of failure to determine a time and place of meeting or failure to meet at a designated time or place, the Executive Board shall name the time and place of the meeting.

Section 2.  Regular Meetings -- The Association may promote such regular meetings of its promotional organizations as shall prove most effective for carrying out the total purpose of the Association.  These organizations will also incorporate into their regular programs such emphasis deemed advisable in keeping with the general promotion of the State Conventions and the Southern Baptist Convention.

 

ARTICLE V - OFFICERS AND COMMITTEES

Section 1.  Officers of the Association shall be:  Moderator, Vice-Moderator, Clerk, and Treasurer, who shall perform the usual duties of such offices.  these shall serve for one (1) year, the term of office shall be from the adjournment of one regular session to the adjournment of the next regular session.  No one shall be elected as Moderator for more than two (2) terms in succession.  The Moderator shall be an ex-officio member of all committees.

Section 2.  All officers prescribed in Section 4 of this Article may be nominated by their respective organizations, where such organizations exist.  All officers so nominated shall constitute a part of the Nominating Committee report to the Association.

Section 3.  A nomination for all officers of the Association shall be made to the Executive Board in its meeting one month before the Annual Meeting by a Nominating Committee, and thence to the Association in its Annual Meeting.  Opportunity shall be given for nominations from the floor for any office in the Association.  A separate vote shall be taken upon any office for which there is more than one nomination.

Section 4Departmental Officers

          a. The Departmental Officers of the Association shall be:  Associational Sunday School Director, Discipleship Training Director, Youth Director, Baptist Men's Leader,  and Woman's Missionary Union Director.

          b.  Other officers required by the program of the Association shall be authorized and their duties prescribed by the Executive Board.

Section 5. Duties of the Officers

          a.  The Moderator shall perform such duties as are incumbent upon the presiding officer of deliberative Baptist bodies, shall serve as chairman of the Committee on the Order of Business of the Annual Meeting, assisted by the Officers of the Association, and shall be ex-officio of all the committees of the Association.

          b. The Vice-Moderator shall be chairman of the Associational Council, assisted by the Officers of the Association, and shall serve as Moderator during the absence of the Moderator.

          c. The Clerk shall make and preserve a correct record of all proceedings of the Association, shall submit necessary information for the edition, printing, and distributing of the minutes of the Annual Meeting, shall carry on such correspondence for the Association as the Moderator and Executive Board shall direct and shall be allowed a fee for his services.

          d. The Treasurer shall receive monies and issue receipts for the same, shall disburse the funds of the Association upon order of the Association or its Executive Board, shall disburse designated receipts strictly according to the will of donors, shall prepare and distribute money and annually a printed report of receipts and disbursements.

          e.  The duties of the Departmental Officers shall be those commonly ascribed to such officers and as determined by the needs and program of the Association and of these departments.

Section 6. Committees and their Duties

          a. The Annual Preacher Committee shall be composed of three members appointed by the Moderator and shall recommend to the Annual Meeting the preacher for the next Annual Meeting.

          b. Other customary or necessary committees shall be presented by the Moderator or Committee on Nominations and elected by the Annual Meeting, and shall have those duties commonly ascribed to such committees or specifically assigned to them.

          c. Special Committees as necessary shall be authorized by the Executive Board and appointed by the Moderator and shall serve until their assigned dutiees or purposes are completed or dissolved by the Executive Board.

Section 7Standing Committees

          a. Mission Development - shall seek to promote an active spirit of missions; shall seek to discover new fields of work; shall investigate all requests for financial assistance from the churches and do any other general survey that is undertaken by the Executive Board, and shall supervise the new field of work.

          b.  Finance Committee - shall present a suggested budget to the Annual Meeting and shall promote the finances of the Association throughout the year.

          c. Evangelism Committee - shall supervise and encourage the work of soul winning throughout the Association.

          d. Nominating Committee - shall bring recommendations for all Associational Officers at the meeting stated in Section 3 Article VI, and shall stand ready to offer similar recommendations to the Executive Board should a vacancy occur in any Associational office.

          e.  Associational Council - including the elected leaders of the various phases of the Associational work, with the Vice-Moderator as Chairman, shall prepare a calendar to the Executive Board for its approval at the earliest date possible.  The Council is to correlate and promote all the work of the Association so that each phase of the work is cared for with the least amount of overlapping.

          f. Encampment Boards - members shall be nominated by the regular nominating procedure for Alto Frio Baptist Encampment and Highland Lakes Baptist Encampment.

 

ARTICLE VII - RECEPTION OF NEW CHURCHES

         Any Baptist church desiring membership in the Association shall petition for representation at least ninety (90) days prior to the Annual Meeting.  Such petitionary letter shall be examined by a committee appointed by the Moderator for such purpose.  Said committee shall make a recommendation to the Association.  A two-thirds (2/3) majority vote is required for acceptance.  The church desiring membership shall be received into a one (1) year watch-care status, which allows participation and involvement without the right to vote or hold leadership positions.

          At the next Annual Meeting, the Credentials Committee shall bring a recommendation to: [1] accept the church into full membership, [2] deny the church membership, or [3] extend the watch-care status for one (1) additional year.  A recommendation for the Credentials Committee to do either of the previously stated three options shall require a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote.

          Any mission of a cooperating church which has duly constituted as a church and is desiring full membership in the Association shall petition for representation at least ninety (90) days prior to the Annual Meeting.  Said petitionary letter shall be examined by a committee appointed by the Moderator for such purpose.  Said Committee shall, upon satisfactory review of the petitioning church's doctrine and practice, make a recommendation to immediately recieve the church into full membership in the Association.  A two-thirds (2/3) majority vote is required for acceptance.

 

ARTICLE VIII - EXECUTIVE BOARD

Section 1.  Membership - at the Annual Meeting the Executive Board shall be consitituted, consisting of three (3) members from each church along with the Pastor.  Eighteen (18) members shall constitute a quorum.

Section 2. The Executive Board shall attend to all matters of the Association between sessions; promote all progress authorized by the Association; and carry out the directives given by the Association.  The Executive Board shall not have the power to create or initiate any new work or project not contained in the reports and recommendations of the previous meeting of the Association.  The Board shall meet on a regular schedule as directed by the Association or as set out by the Board itself.  It may be called into  special session when necessary by the Moderator, or by the Vice-Moderator in his absence.

Section 3.  The work of the Assocation as promoted by the Executive Board shall be distributed among such committees as are necessary to consider and make reports to the Board on all matters pertaining to their work.  The Officers of the Association shall be the Officers of the Executive Board.

 

ARTICLE IX - AMENDMENTS

This Constitution may be amended at any Annual Meeting of the Association provided such amendment is offered in writing at the first session and is adopted by at least two-thirds (2/3) majority at a subsequent session.

 

ARTICLE X - RULES OF DECORUM

The Association, when convened, shall abide by the rules of decorum as used by the Southern Baptist Convention.

 

Revised: October 1993; October 11, 1998; October 2005