The Constitution of
Grace Baptist Church of Muncy, Pa
Revised May, 2008
Name of the Church
This church shall be known as THE GRACE BAPTIST CHURCH OF MUNCY, Lycoming
County, PA. Grace Baptist Church is an independent Baptist church and is not affiliated
with any convention or association of churches.
The purpose of this church shall be the advancement of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. It
shall seek to attain this end through the preaching of the Gospel, consistent Christian living
by its members, personal evangelism, missionary endeavor, and Christian education. We
believe that the Bible is the supreme and final authority in faith and practice.
Section 1 Qualifications
Any person may become an active member of this church upon the recommendation of the
Pastor and Board of Deacons (the Church reserves the right to reject any such
(a) Upon confession of faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, and upon
baptism by immersion.
(b) By letter from some other Baptist church of like faith and order,
accompanied by personal testimony.
(c) Upon statement of Christian experience, if previously baptized by
(d) By restoration to the Lord and fellowship with believers, accompanied by a
personal testimony stating this desire.
(e) By requesting that active status be restored. This must be presented in a
letter to the Deacons stating such desire, and should follow a renewal of
In order that persons may exercise their duties as members, they shall have the Church
covenant, Doctrinal Statement and Constitution presented to them by the Pastor or Deacons
upon application for membership and shall be in agreement with them.
Each candidate for membership shall appear before the Pastor and Deacons to be examined
as to his or her Christian experience. If approved by the Pastor and Deacons, the name of
the candidate shall be presented to the Church at any regularly scheduled worship service
and, by a three-fourths (3/4) vote of the active members present, shall be received into
Section 2 Active Members
All those who show their interest in the work, witness and welfare of the Grace Baptist
Church by regular attendance; and those who, because of sickness or infirmity, or job
obligations, are unable to attend service, shall be classed as active members. Active
members shall have the privilege of voting at all Church business meetings. See Article VI
for rules for church business meetings and rules for voting.
Section 3 Associate Members
This category of membership is open to those in the following circumstances:
(1) Active members who are engaged in full time Christian service outside the
attendance area of the church and for whom affiliation with another church
is not feasible. (Foreign or home missionaries or evangelists, etc.)
(2) Active members who are students attending school or having military
obligations outside the attendance area of the church who may wish to
temporarily affiliate with a church in the vicinity of their school or military
service in order to qualify for Christian service in that church. Upon return
to the attendance area of the church, students or military personnel will
automatically be reinstated as regular active members.
(3) Students attending school in the area who wish to retain membership in their
home church and still be active in this church. Such applicants must follow
the normal reception procedure for active membership.
(4) Active members who have relocated outside the attendance area of the
church but have not found a suitable church home. This category is limited
to six month’s duration after which time their names will be dropped from
associate membership rolls unless extenuating circumstances prevail as
agreed by the Pastor and Deacons.
Associate members are not counted for purposes of determining a quorum for business
meetings and shall have no right of franchise in any business meeting. Persons seeking this
status must apply in writing and be approved by Pastor and Deacons.
Section 4 Dismissal of Members
(a) Letters of Dismissal, for the purpose of uniting with some other Baptist
church of like faith and order, shall be granted to members in good standing
upon the decision of the Pastor and Deacons. Such a decision will be
reported to the church membership. Any member having been granted such
letter shall thereafter cease to be a member of this church.
(b) When members have no active affiliation (refer to Article III, Section 2)
with the church for six months, their names shall be placed on the inactive
membership list. In May and November, the Pastor and Deacons will review
the active membership list and make the decision as to who is to be placed
on this inactive list. This shall be preceded by an attempt to determine the
desire and intent of the individual member with regard to their status. These
inactive members have no voting privileges. (For restoration to active from
inactive, see article III, Section 1 (e).)
(c) It shall be the duty of the Pastor and Deacons to seek to reclaim those
members who are on the inactive list. When, after one year, no contact with
the church has been made, an inactive member shall be taken from the roll
and placed on the past member file. This decision to be approved by the
church. The past membership file shall be a permanent record but not used
except by request.
(d) Discipline of a church member: Under certain circumstances, such as with a
disobedient brother, it may become necessary to follow the guidelines which
are set forth in Matthew 18:15-17.
“Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee go and tell him
his fault between thee and him alone: If he shall hear thee, thou hast
gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee
one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every
word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear then, tell it
unto the Church: but if he neglect to hear the Church, let him be unto
thee as an heathen man and a publican.”
Additional Scriptures include Romans 16:17, 18; I Corinthians 5:11-13.
Upon no fewer than two contacts with such a member the Pastor and
Deacons shall present the individual case to the Church for official action
by the Body. Should the church determine that the member is at fault then
he shall be informed of the church’s decision. If, at that time, the member
will not comply with church action, then he will be removed from the
church fellowship, his membership being revoked. The church shall make
every possible effort to restore such a one. Galatians 6:1.
(e) When a member requests that his or her name be removed from the Church
roll, and no charges have been preferred against such member, the Deacons
and Pastor shall investigate, and if they are satisfied that said member
cannot be reclaimed, they shall present to the Church a recommendation
that the name be erased from the membership roll.
Officers. Boards. Committees and Duties
Section 1 Pastor
The pastor shall be convicted of the Baptist Distinctives, adhere to the Doctrinal Statement
of Grace Baptist Church, and be a preacher of the Gospel. The pastor shall also administer
the ordinances, watch over his membership, promote the spiritual interests of the church,
organize and develop its strength for the best possible service. He shall, unless otherwise
provided by the church, be the Moderator of the church. He shall be an ex-officio member
of all boards and committees of the church and its auxiliary organizations. As Moderator,
he shall preside at all business meetings of the church, except when he shall request that the
vice-moderator preside in his place.
Section 2 Assistant Pastors
The assistant pastor shall be convicted of the Baptist Distinctives, adhere to
the Doctrinal Statement of Grace Baptist Church, and be a preacher of the
(b) Calling an Assistant Pastor:
When the need for assisting pastors occurs, the pastor and deacons shall
examine the candidates and, upon approval, present them to the church.
They shall be voted into office by a three-fourths (3/4) vote of the active
members present and voting at any church business meeting. Their salary
shall be agreed upon at the time of election of an assistant pastor. The
assistant pastor shall be entitled to an annual vacation of two (2) weeks.
After three (3) years, this shall be extended to three (3) weeks, and upon
ministering five (5) years, four weeks.
(c) Duties of the Assistant Pastor
The assistant pastor shall be responsible to the church through the pastor.
They shall be directly under the supervision of the pastor for their duties.
(d) Dismissal of an Assistant Pastor
1. The assistant pastor shall be free to resign as they feel led of the Holy
Spirit, but out of courtesy, they should give a sixty-day (60) written notice
to the church.
2. Dismissal of an assistant pastor should have a three-fourths (3/4) vote of
active members present and voting and follow the procedure of dismissal
in Article V, Section 2. In event this occurs abruptly, the salary shall
continue for thirty (30) days.
Section 3 Deacons
The Deacons shall consist of five (5) Scripturally qualified (I Timothy 3:8-13; Acts 6:3)
members who are as faithful as possible to all services, for the first 100 members or fraction
thereof. One deacon shall be added for each additional lot of fifty (5O) active members or
fraction thereof. This action shall occur only at the annual election of officers. Each
member shall be elected for a term of three (3) years. In the event of more than one
addition at one time the nominating committee shall present nominees for a three-year, twoyear
or one-year term, if needed. A member can serve for two (2) consecutive terms before
vacating this office for a period of one year.
(a) Duties of the Deacons
1. The Deacons shall meet a least once a month. They shall elect their own
chairman and secretary at their first meeting of the fiscal year. The
chairman shall serve as Vice-Moderator of the Church, or appoint another
deacon to serve in his place. The deacons are to be associated with the
pastor as his counselors, assist him in evangelism and visitation, and
provide for the services of the church in his absence. They shall assist the
Pastor in the areas of publicity, worship, ushering, missions, music,
ordination and licensing, and shall serve as the Pulpit Committee. They
shall also serve as the Nominating Committee of the Church. They shall
appoint and oversee such committees as are deemed necessary to
efficiently perform their duties.
2. They shall, with the pastor, hear the testimony of all applicants for
baptism and church membership before names are presented to the
church. They shall carefully question all candidates regarding their
Christian experience, their acceptance of Jesus Christ as personal Savior,
their understanding of and agreement with the Church Covenant,
Doctrinal Statement and Constitution. They shall assist the pastor in
administering the ordinances, recommend to the church such matters as
they think the spiritual interests require, and administer the Benevolent
Fund. They shall review, with the pastor, the active membership roll in
accordance with Article III, Section 4 (b). They shall watch for and
welcome strangers, greet members, assist male candidates for baptism,
and shall seek out and assist in cases of sickness and suffering.
3. The Deacons shall hold in trust all property belonging to the Church and
the Corporation, and shall take all necessary measures for its protection,
management and upkeep, and shall be responsible for all legal matters
pertaining to the Church and the Corporation. They shall not alienate,
sell, or encumber the church property, build; buy or otherwise involve the
church in expense, besides the expenses incidental to the regular work of
the church and ordinary expenditure incurred by the proper insurance,
repair and preservation of the properties, without the approval of the
Church for so doing.
Section 4 - Trustees
1. Definition of duties:
The Trustee Board shall, in cooperation with the Senior Pastor and the
Deacon Board, be responsible for the care and maintenance of the church
property. It shall coordinate and oversee the use of the property by
organizations within and without the church. It shall be responsible for
employing, contracting for and supervising the church custodian and
other individuals and companies required in maintaining and/or
improving the church property within budget parameters. It shall be
responsible for the planning required for the maintenance of,
improvement of, and additions to the church property and facilities. It
shall be responsible for seeing that the church is adequately insured and
that all safety requirements are met.
2. Qualifications and terms:
The Trustee Board will be composed of five (5) men elected at the
Annual Business Meeting. Trustee candidates shall be selected by the
nominating committee to serve 3 year terms. Trustee should be selected
from the membership of Grace Baptist Church and should be men of
good Christian character and integrity. Trustees may serve 2 consecutive
terms before vacating the board for a period of one year.
Section 5a Church Treasurer
The church treasurer will be elected each year and can be re-elected indefinitely. The
treasurer shall be custodian of all monies contributed for all expenditures of the church,
after the Finance Committee counts such offerings, except for the Deacons’ Benevolent
Fund. All money shall be deposited in the church account. All disbursements shall be
authorized by the church through the annual budget. Payment of all bills shall be by check.
All bills for extraordinary expenses not already authorized by the annual budget must
receive special approval by the church. The treasurer shall present to the church, by placing
in the foyer a monthly report of an itemized statement of income and disbursements,
showing the actual financial condition of the church. All financial records are to be audited
at the close of the fiscal year, or more often if so requested by the church. Upon
termination of office, all books and records pertaining to the office of treasurer shall
immediately be made available to any newly elected treasurer. The treasurer shall serve on
the Finance Committee.
Section 5b Assistant Church Treasurer
If recommended by the Board of Deacons and approved by the church, the assistant church
treasurer will be elected each year and can be reelected indefinitely. It shall be the duty of
the assistant church treasurer to assist the church treasurer in the performance of the duties
and responsibilities outlined in Section 5a above.
Section 6 Financial Secretary
The financial secretary will be elected each year and can be re-elected indefinitely. The
duties shall be to record all individual offerings which are presented by envelope or check
except the Deacons’ Benevolent Fund, provide offering envelopes; and issue annual
receipts to each member. All books and records are to be confidentially delivered to any
Section 7 Church Clerk
The church clerk will be elected each year and can be re-elected indefinitely. Duties shall
include that of taking accurate minutes of the business proceedings of the church including
the reception and dismissal of members; maintaining a complete roll of the members of the
church and their addresses; issuing of letters of dismissal as authorized by the church;
preserving and properly filing all letters, reports, and other documents pertaining to this
office. On termination of office, all books, files, records and other documents pertaining to
this office shall be released to his/her successor. It shall be the responsibility of the church
clerk to act parliamentarian and to see that the church’ business is conducted according to
the Constitution of Grace Baptist Church. The church clerk is to keep an up-to-date count
of active members over 18 years of age and report the number for a quorum.
Section 8 Finance Committee
The Finance Committee shall consist of five (5) members composed of four (4) Deacons as
appointed by the board annually, and the church treasurer.
(a) Duties of the Finance Committee
1. This committee shall select a chairman at their first meeting of the fiscal
year. It shall be the duty of at least two members of the Finance
Committee to count all monies received in offerings during or following
each service. All moneys shall be deposited in the church account.
2. The Finance Committee shall prepare a proposed budget for the church for
the coining year and shall present it to the membership at the Annual
Meeting in May.
Section 9 A. Other Positions
(Each elected for a three-year-term, and can serve for two (2) consecutive terms before
vacating office for one (1) year.)
(a) General Superintendent of Sunday School
The general superintendent shall serve as Adult Assembly Director and
assist department directors. He shall use the attendance records, as kept by
the Records Coordinator, to encourage visitation by the teachers and
superintendents, He shall, along with his assistant, in conjunction with the
Sunday School teachers, approve and be responsible for the ordering and
purchasing of all Sunday School materials.
(b) Assistant Superintendent and Personnel Director of Sunday School
The assistant superintendent and personnel director shall assist the general
Superintendent in fulfillment of his duties and as Personnel Director he
shall maintain a list of prospective teachers.
B. Other Positions
(Each appointed annually by the Deacon Board,)
(a) Director of Youth Work
The director of youth work shall be responsible for the total training program
for Junior and Senior High School students. He shall coordinate and provide
adequate activities and training for the youth of the church.
(b) Materials and Equipment Manager
Materials and Equipment Manager Shall be responsible for forecasting
needed equipment and repair and storage of existing Sunday School
furniture, audio-visuals, chalkboards, easels and other equipment, including
(c) Records Coordinator
The records coordinator shall be in charge of the attendance records system
of the Sunday School.
(d) Church Secretary (This position will be filled by Pastor and Deacons.) The
church secretary must be a born-again member in good standing of Grace
Baptist Church, and be in complete agreement with the Doctrinal Statement
and Constitution. The secretary must be able to handle every call, every
visitor, and every situation with utmost confidentiality, and have the ability
to carry out the duties of a secretary as set forth by the pastor. The secretary
shall function as the flower committee person.
(adopted upon vote at a business meeting January1999)
CaIling a Pastor
Section 1 Calling
(a) When it is necessary to call a Pastor, the Deacons shall serve as the Pulpit
Committee. The committee shall investigate the merits of every man under
consideration in regard to his personal character, education, ministerial
record and preaching ability. He shall be in complete agreement with the
Doctrinal Statement and Constitution of Grace Baptist Church. When a
suitable man is found (see Article IV, Section 1), the committee shall
recommend him to the church for consideration.
(b) The call of a pastor shall come before the church at a regularly called
business meeting, notice of such meeting and its purpose having been read
from the pulpit on two (2) successive Sundays prior to the meeting. An
affirmative vote of three-fourths (3/4) of the members present and qualified
to vote, provided there be present and voting fifty percent (50%) of the
active membership, shall be necessary to extend a call. Only one candidate
shall be presented to the church at one time. The vote shall be by written
(c) The pastor shall be called for an indefinite period of time; the salary shall be
fixed at the time of the call, and may be changed by vote of the church at any
regular business meeting provided that such change has been considered by
the Finance Committee. The salary shall be paid in convenient installments.
The pastor shall be entitled to an annual vacation of four (4) full weeks with
Section 2 Termination
The term of the office of pastor may be ended upon thirty (30) day’s notification on the part
of the pastor or of the church. A vote for termination of the office shall be at a regular or
called business meeting. Notice of such meeting and its purpose having been read from the
pulpit on two (2) successive Sundays prior to said meeting. An affirmative vote of threefourths
(3/4) of the members present and qualified to vote, providing there be present and
voting fifty percent (50%) of the active membership, shall make valid termination of said
Church Business Meetings
Regular business meetings of Grace Baptist Church of Muncy will be held on a quarterly
basis. The Annual Meeting will be held in May and will include election of officers and
presentation of and voting on the church budget. Subsequent meetings will be held in
August, November, and February; all meetings to be held the second Sunday of these
named months. Special meetings can be called at the request of the Pastor or Deacons
when necessary. These special meetings can be held briefly following a regularly
scheduled service of the church. * Voted and accepted at Business meeting Dec 12, 1999.
(a) No decision can be made without a quorum. Twenty-five percent (25%) of
the active members, 18 years of age or older, present and voting, shall
constitute a quorum. A majority of such members present and voting at any
business meeting shall be sufficient to decide on any matter presented
unless otherwise provided by this constitution.
(b) Only active members who are 18 years old or older may vote on any
matter. (See Article III, Section 2, Associate Membership.) No voting by
proxy shall be allowed.
(c) Any expense in excess of $1,000.00 not authorized by the church budget
must receive the approval of the Board of Deacons with subsequent
approval of the Church.
Election of Officers and Their Qualifications
Section 1 Time
The annual election of officers shall be held at the annual business meeting in May.
Section 2 Procedure
The Nominating Committee (Deacons) shall prepare a list of names from the active
membership of the church of those qualified to fill the various offices. This is to be done at
the April meeting. Potential nominees may be given to the committee, in writing, prior to
their meeting for this purpose. The committee shall interview each final nominee and
inform him/her of their duties and ascertain their willingness to serve. The committee shall
nominate one or more qualified persons for each office to be filled, and post their names on
the bulletin board at least one week prior to an election. The committee shall have prepared
ballots for use at the election. All officers shall assume office June 1.
Section 3 Vacancies
Vacancies occurring during the year may be filled for the unexpired term at any business
meeting. The nominating committee shall present to the church nominees for the vacancies
to be filled,
Section 4 Qualifications
All officers shall be active members of this church and shall, with the exception of the
pastor, be elected by written ballot at the annual meeting in May. Any officer, who, for a
period of six (6) months, shall fail to faithfully perform the duties pertaining to his/her
office, automatically vacates said office. The church has the power, for good and sufficient
cause, to remove from office any officer or committee member.
Section 5 Resignations
Resignations of officers shall be in writing to the church, and be effective on the date
specified in the resignation.
The church shall meet regularly each Lord’s Day for worship and the preaching of
The church shall meet for the observance of the Lord’s Supper on the Lord’s Day
and at such times as the church may decide.
The church shall meet for prayer, testimony and Bible preaching; each Wednesday
The Sunday School shall meet each Lord’s Day for Christian instruction (the study
and teaching of the Bible).
Organizations or Teams in the Church
Section 1 Officers of Organizations or Teams in the church
The officers of all adult and youth auxiliary organizations shall be active members of Grace
Baptist Church, be elected by their respective organizations, and subject to ratification by
Section 2 – Purpose
The purpose of these organizations or teams is to meet the needs of the membership and to
make the work of the church more efficient. There will be from time to time the need to
establish various organizations, groups, or teams. The purpose of any such team must be in
harmony with the general purpose and values of the church and will be a voluntary team
approved by the Pastor and Deacons.
Section 3 Choir
The Church Choir should consist of members only. In the absence of a teen choir, saved
teens should be eligible to participate in the choir until the age of 18 upon the discretion of
the choir director and the approval of the Pastor and Deacons.
Section 4 Constitutions
The constitutions of auxiliary organizations shall be drawn so as not to conflict with the
Constitution of Grace Baptist Church. These are subject to review of the deacons/pastor.
Section 5 Meetings
Meetings of auxiliary organizations may be held at such times as will not conflict with the
meetings of the church, and shall be under the guidance of the pastor and deacons.
Gifts and Donations
The Deacons and/or the Church will make the decision to accept or reject any donation. All
gifts donated, monetary and material, shall become the sole property and under the
administration of Grace Baptist Church. They will be used at the discretion of the Church.
Grace Baptist Church is dedicated to an evangelistic outreach to the community of Muncy,
and to the far corners of the world; therefore, our total ministry is missions.
Our outreach through home and foreign missions will be carried out by the support of
missionaries who are in agreement with the Doctrinal Statement of Grace Baptist Church of
Muncy, PA. The sponsoring agency under which they serve must also be in agreement
with the Doctrinal Statement.
The giving to missions will be determined annually by the church. Financial support will
be monthly, at the first of each month, or as determined by the Deacons according to the
The fiscal year of the church shall begin the first (1st) of June and close on the last day of
This constitution may be amended at any regular or called business meeting of the church
by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of those present and voting, provided a quorum is present and
voting, and that notice of such amendment, stating the proposed change, shall have been
given from the pulpit on two successive Sundays.
Rules of Order
In business meeting proceedings not consistent with this Constitution, the rules contained in
the Roberts Rules of Order (revised’) shall be used as reference.
In the event of the dissolution of this corporation, all of its tangible assets and holdings
shall be distributed to such other existing non-profit religious corporations as would be in
agreement with the letter and spirit of this constitution. All decisions in this event would be
made by the majority vote of the remaining members of this church.
No profit shall ever accrue to the benefit of any person or persons from the assets, holdings
or other transactions in which this corporation may become involved