CONSTITUTION OF GENESIS COMMUNITY CHURCH

  1. The name of this Society shall be GENESIS COMMUNITY CHURCH
  2. The purpose of this church is to be a family where people may KNOW the love of God in Jesus Christ, GROW as His disciples, and GO share His love with others.

Purposes

To advance religion by preaching and teaching the religious tenets, doctrines, and observances associated with the Christian Faith.

To advance religion by establishing and maintaining a house of worship with services conducted in accordance with the tenets and doctrines of the Christian faith.

To undertake activities ancillary and incidental to the attainment of the aforementioned charitable purposes.

    BYLAWS OF GENESIS COMMUNITY CHURCH

    PART 1 – DEFINITIONS AND INTERPRETATION

    Definitions

    A. In these Bylaws:

    “Act” means the Societies Act of British Columbia as amended from time to time;
    “Society” means Genesis Community Church of Prince George;
    “Board” means the directors of the Society. Board of Directors includes the Senior Pastor and the Council of Elders;
    “Bylaws” means these Bylaws as altered from time to time.
    “Elders” also means directors.

    B. The definitions in the Act apply to these Bylaws.

    C. If there is a conflict between these Bylaws and the Act or the regulations under the Act, the Act or the regulations, as the case may be, prevail.

    PART 2 – MEMBERSHIP

    A. Requirements:

    1. Acceptance of Jesus Christ as Saviour and Lord
    2. Believer’s baptism. This church practices baptism by immersion.
    3. Support of the Constitution, By-laws and Policies of Genesis Community Church.
    4. A desire to live for Jesus Christ and participate in the life and ministry of the church.

    B. Responsibilities:

    1. To express Jesus’ love in deeds and words, in the world in which they live.
    2. To meet regularly with the church family.
    3. To support the Church financially.
    4. To be responsive and supportive to the leadership of the Church.
    5. To love, encourage, support and pray for one another.

    C. Process:

    1. Applicants shall be interviewed by two elders, or a pastor and one elder
    2. Elders shall provide information on the Constitution and Bylaws of Genesis Community Church.
    3. Members shall be accepted on approval by the Council of Elders

    D. Inactive membership:

    1. A member who ceases to attend church services regularly may be moved to inactive status by the Elders.
    2. A member that is inactive or otherwise not in good standing may not vote.
    3. The church membership shall be reviewed annually by the Board of Directors.

    E. Termination of membership:

    1. By personal request
    2. By death
    3. By the elders
      (a) A member who has not attended the church services regularly for two years may be removed from membership. The elders will seek to contact the member to enquire about their spiritual well-being and encourage them toward active involvement in a church of their choice;
      (b) Two elders or a pastor and one elder will meet with any member whose conduct is contrary to godly living. The elders will seek to bring repentance and restoration through counsel. If there is no response, the elders will bring the matter to the Board of Directors and a vote will determine if membership is revoked. If there is a change of heart and behaviour, membership may be restored.

    PART 3 – GOVERNMENT

    GENESIS COMMUNITY CHURCH is established on principles of accountability and transparency. Governance of the church will be implemented through a collaboration of the Council of Elders, Senior Pastor, and Members.

    BOARD OF DIRECTORS: all members shall demonstrate a personal relationship with Christ, a vibrant Christian witness, godly character and a willingness to serve. They shall strive to exemplify the characteristics outlined in 1 Timothy 3:1-13, Titus 1:6-9; 2:1-8, and 1 Peter 5:1-5.

    A. ELDERS:

    1. Roles: the Council of Elders has two primary roles.
      (a) Administration and governance of the church, as a society
      Responsibilities include:
      financial oversight; determining wage/benefit packages for paid positions within the church, including that of Senior Pastor; determining priorities for the budget; developing and maintaining an operating budget; managing properties owned/leased by the church; managing lease agreements, equipment and assets; overseeing insurance and protection of property; developing job descriptions and recruiting for paid positions and other leadership positions within the church; maintaining a membership list, distinguishing active and inactive members; and providing regular updates to the congregation.
      (b) Spiritual oversight of the ministry of the church and spiritual care of the pastor and members
      Responsibilities include: overseeing the spiritual life of the church; guarding the integrity of the ministry; modelling core values; praying for the spiritual and physical well-being of the congregation; supervising leadership of specific church ministries and life groups; mediating resolution when conflict/disharmony arises; confronting teachings that are not biblical; providing correction/discipline when needed, in accordance to Scripture; encouraging and supporting the Senior Pastor and other staff; and guiding the congregation through transition periods in the absence of a senior pastor.
    2. Board positions: specific board positions filled by elders include president; vice-president; secretary; and treasurer. Job descriptions will outline the responsibilities of each board position.
    3. Terms of office: Elders shall be elected for a two-year term, after which they may be re-appointed by the board of directors, after notification of the membership.
    4. Nomination of elders:
      (a) Potential candidates shall be interviewed by two elders or senior pastor and one elder to determine qualifications;
      (b) The Council of Elders shall nominate suitable candidates;
      (c) Elder nominees will give their testimony to the congregation, then will be approved by the Council of Elders.
    5. Conflict Resolution: If conflict arises within the Board of Directors that cannot be resolved, a neutral third-party mediator with proven track-record of wisdom, discernment and reconciliation will be called in for counsel.
    6. Dismissal for cause: An elder who shows persistent conduct contrary to godly living may be removed from office after due process. The individual will be approached with the goal of repentance and restoration; a biblical model of conflict resolution will be followed by the Council of Elders and Senior Pastor (Galatians 5:19-21; 1 Timothy 5:19; Galatians 6:1-2; Matthew 18:15-17). If the individual is unwilling to change or address the issue, the Council of Elders and Senior Pastor may request resignation, or call a special Board of Directors meeting to vote on the removal of the elder. A 70% majority vote is required for dismissal.

    B. SENIOR PASTOR:

    1. Roles of the Senior Pastor include:
      (a) Providing general oversight of the ministry of the Church;
      (b) Conducting regular Sunday worship services;
      (c) Collaborating with the elders in oversight of baptisms and communion;
      (d) Supervising ministry leaders and other staff members;
      (e) Assisting the Council of Elders in casting vision and establishing priorities in the ministry of the church;
      (f) Voting in matters before the Board of Directors, with exception to matters that could be perceived as a conflict of interest, including: Remuneration, Hiring relatives as staff, Contracting work to companies owned/run by relatives
    2. Selection: When the office of senior pastor is vacant:
      (a) The Council of Elders shall prepare the job description and set the criteria for qualifications for the pastoral candidates. Character qualifications shall be as those outlined for all members of the Board of Directors, that is candidate shall demonstrate a personal relationship with Christ, a vibrant Christian witness, godly character and a willingness to serve. They shall strive to exemplify the characteristics outlined in 1 Timothy 3:1-13, Titus 1:6-9; 2:1-8, and 1 Peter 5:1-5.
      (b) The Council of Elders shall appoint a pastoral search committee of at least five members, including one elder.
      (c) When the search committee has selected a candidate, they shall arrange to bring the candidate to the church to preach, meet with the elders, and interact with the congregation.
      (d) At a subsequent membership meeting, the members shall vote whether or not to call the candidate. A quorum of 25% of the active voting membership is required. An affirmative vote of 70% of those present, taken by ballot, is required to call a senior pastor.
    3. Remuneration: The senior pastor shall be remunerated according to terms mutually agreed on and worked out at the time of their call to ministry at the church. Remuneration, including salary, pension, benefits and holidays are reviewed annually by the Council of Elders in preparation for the annual budget.
    4. Performance evaluation: Each year, the senior pastor shall have an evaluation by two designated elders. They shall encourage the pastor in his strengths, listen to his concerns, and seek to help him and encourage him in areas of weakness. The goal of evaluation is to build more effective ministry.
    5. Conflict Resolution: If conflict arises within the Board of Directors that cannot be resolved, a neutral third-party mediator with proven track-record of wisdom, discernment and reconciliation will be called in for counsel.
    6. Termination: Tenure of a senior pastor may be terminated by:
      (a) A letter of resignation giving formal notice.
      (b) Dismissal for a cause:
      - The decision to dismiss a senior pastor shall be taken only after serious efforts have been made to resolve conflict or remediate unmet responsibilities. Dismissal of the senior pastor requires a membership meeting with a quorum of 25% of active membership present; vote will be by ballot and 70% in favour of dismissal is required.
      - In the case of serious moral failure such as theft, sexual immorality or other conduct bringing serious discredit to the church, the Council of Elders have the authority for immediate dismissal.

    MEMBERS: The membership of this Society shall have decision-making power, which is the right to vote, in areas such as:

    1. Hiring or dismissing of pastoral staff;
    2. Major changes to the direction/vision of the church;
    3. Purchase or sale of church land, major construction, or relocation;
    4. Revision of constitution and bylaws;
    5. Adoption of annual financial budget of the church;
    6. Business of duly called membership meetings.

    PART 4 – MEETINGS OF MEMBERS

    A. Annual General Meeting (AGM): The AGM shall be held no later than June 27 each year.

    B. Special membership meetings:

    1. A special membership meeting may be called by the Board of Directors as needed;
    2. The purpose of the special membership meeting must be clearly stated in advance.

    C. Ordinary business at a membership meeting: At a general meeting, the following business is ordinary business:

    1. Adoption of rules of order;
    2. Consideration of any financial statements of the Society presented to the meeting;
    3. Consideration of reports;
    4. Appointment of directors;
    5. Business arising out of a report of the directors not requiring the passing of a special resolution.

    D. Notice of meeting: A notice of meeting must be publicized two Sundays prior to the meeting by written notice or electronic means, such as on the church website. A notice must state the nature of any business, other than ordinary business, to be transacted at the meeting in sufficient detail to permit a member receiving the notice to form a reasoned judgment concerning that business.

    E. Quorum required:

    1. Business, other than the adjournment or termination of the meeting, must not be transacted at a general meeting unless a quorum of voting members is present;
    2. The quorum for the transaction of business at a general meeting is 25% of the active membership, except for the calling or dismissal of a pastor (see Part 3B);
    3. If, within 30 minutes from the time set for holding a general meeting, a quorum of voting members is not present, the meeting shall be adjourned to another appointed time. If a quorum is not present at that time, the members present constitute a quorum.

    F. Order of business at general meeting: The order of business at a general meeting is as follows:

    1. Determine that there is a quorum;
    2. Approve the agenda;
    3. Approve the minutes from the last general meeting;
    4. Deal with unfinished business from the last general meeting;
    5. If the meeting is an annual general meeting,
      (a) Receive annual reports from the pastor, elders and other ministry leaders;
      (b) Receive the directors’ report on the financial statements of the Society for the previous financial year;
      (c) Adoption of the annual financial budget of the church;
      (d) Appointment of elders as required;
      (e) Other business as required.
    6. Deal with new business, including any matters about which notice has been given to the members in the notice of meeting;
    7. Terminate the meeting.

    G. Voting:

    1. At a general meeting, voting shall normally be by a show of hands, except that if, before such a vote, 2 or more voting members request a written ballot, or a written ballot is directed by the chair of the meeting, voting must be by a written ballot;
    2. The chair of a general meeting must announce the outcome of each vote and that outcome must be recorded in the minutes of the meeting’
    3. Voting by proxy is not permitted
    4. Members who have reached the age of eighteen years shall have the right to vote at membership meetings;
    5. An inactive member shall not have the right to vote;

    H. Ordinary resolution: a resolution passed at a members’ meeting by a simple majority of the votes cast by voting members.

    1. Quorum required at meetings for ordinary resolutions is 25% of active membership (see Part 4E).

    I. Special resolution: a resolution passed at a members’ meeting by at least 70% of the votes cast by voting members.

    1. Quorum required at meetings for special resolutions is 25% of active membership.
    2. The full-text of any Special Resolution to be considered at the meeting must be in the Notice of Meeting
    3. Special resolutions are required for:
      (a) Calling/hiring of full-time pastoral staff;
      (b) Dismissal of full-time pastoral staff;
      (c) Amendments to the church constitution and bylaws;
      (d) Borrowing money;
      (e) Purchase of property.

    PART 5 – DIRECTORS (BOARD MEMBERS)

    A. Number of directors on Board: The Society must have no fewer than 5 and no more than 18 directors.

    B. Appointment of directors: At each annual general meeting, directors will be appointed by the Board as per vacancies.

    C. Directors may fill casual vacancy on Board: The Board may fill vacancies in positions between annual general meetings. These positions must be confirmed by the Board of Directors at the next AGM.

    D. Remuneration of directors: Board members, with the exception of the senior pastor, shall not receive remuneration for their services as directors; however, they may be reimbursed for reasonable expenses incurred in performing their duties as directors.

    E. Signing Authority:

    1. Contracts or other official documents, such as pre-authorized payments, must be signed on behalf of the Society by the president, together with one other director, or, if the president is unable to provide a signature, by the vice-president together with one other director.
    2. All cheques, bills of exchange or other offers for payment of money, notes, or other evidences of indebtedness issued in the name of the church shall be signed by two people, one of whom will be an elder, who have been designated by the board to have signing authority for the church. Up to six members of the church may be so designated at any given time.

    PART 6 – DIRECTORS’ (BOARD) MEETINGS

    A. Calling directors’ meeting

    1. A directors’ meeting may be called by the president or by any 2 other directors
    2. At least 2 days’ notice of a directors’ meeting must be given unless all the directors agree to a shorter notice period.
    3. The accidental omission to give notice of a directors’ meeting to a director, or the non-receipt of a notice by a director, does not invalidate proceedings at the meeting.

    B. Order of business at meeting: The directors may regulate their meetings and proceedings as they think fit.

    C. Quorum of directors: The quorum for the transaction of business at a directors’ meeting is a majority plus one (50% + 1) of the directors. If a quorum is not present, business may be discussed and resolutions formed, but they must be ratified by phone or electronic means by 70% of the directors before taking effect. Such resolutions must be recorded at the next regular board meeting.

    D. Voting at Board meetings: When a quorum is present, business requiring voting will have 70% agreement to pass.

    E. Frequency of Board meetings: The Board shall meet regularly, at least 8 times per year, to conduct business. The Board may choose, at its discretion, to allow church members to attend and observe Board meetings.

    PART 7 – BOARD POSITIONS

    A. Election or appointment to Board positions: Directors must be elected or appointed to the following Board positions, and a director, other than the president, may hold more than one position:

    1. President;
    2. Vice-president;
    3. Secretary;
    4. Treasurer.

    B. Directors at large: Directors who are elected or appointed to positions on the Board in addition to the positions described in these Bylaws are elected or appointed as directors at large.

    C. Role of board positions:

    1. President: The president is the chair of the Board and is responsible for supervising the other directors in the execution of their duties.
    2. Vice-president: The vice-president is the vice-chair of the Board and is responsible for carrying out the duties of the president if the president is unable to act.
    3. Secretary: The secretary is responsible for doing, or making the necessary arrangements for, the following:
      (a) Issuing notices of general meetings and directors’ meetings;
      (b) Taking minutes of general meetings and directors’ meetings;
      (c) Keeping the records of the society in accordance with the act;
      (d) Conducting the correspondence of the board;
      (e) Filing the annual report of the society and making any other filings with the registrar under the Act.

      Absence of secretary from meeting: In the absence of the
      secretary from a meeting, the Board must appoint another individual
      to act as secretary at the meeting.

    4. Treasurer: The treasurer is responsible for doing, or making the necessary arrangements for, the following:
      (a) Receiving and banking monies collected from the members or other sources;
      (b) Keeping accounting records in respect of the society’s financial transactions;
      (c) Preparing the society’s financial statements;
      (d) Making the society’s filings respecting taxes.

    PART 8 – ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS

    A. Borrowing Powers: The Board of Directors may borrow money on behalf of the membership as needed, subject to approval of the active church membership voting on a special resolution.

    B. Audits: The Board of Directors shall engage a professional accountant to review the financial records annually and prepare a report for the congregation.

    C. Records:

    1. Minutes of membership meetings shall be posted in a prominent place. Minutes of membership meetings and financial reports may be inspected by any member of the society by contacting the church office. A copy of these documents shall be retained at the church office.
    2. Minutes of other meetings are considered private and confidential and are not available to the membership or the public.

    D. Policies and Procedures: The Board shall establish Policies and Procedures to deal with issues of good governance and the health and safety of members of the Society. The board shall establish which policies and procedures need membership approval.

    E. Amendments: Amendments to this constitution or the bylaws must be submitted to the members in writing and must be publicly posted two weeks prior to the membership meeting at which the amendment(s) will be voted on. An amendment shall be deemed a special resolution and requires a 70% majority to pass.

    F. Non-Profit: The activities of the Society shall be carried on without purpose of gain for its members and any income, profits, or other accretions to the Society shall be used in promoting the purposes of the Society.

    G. Dissolution:

    1. Genesis Community Church may be dissolved as a society by a special resolution passed at a membership meeting called for that purpose;
    2. In the event of the dissolution of this society for any reason, all remaining assets of the society shall, after payment of liabilities, be distributed to a local church or Christian organization, which is a charitable organization registered under the provisions of the Income Tax Act.