Valley Bible Fellowship

116 Hermit Lane, Silver Cliff, Colorado USA 81252

719-783-9050

Established April 24, 1978

A Non-Profit Corporation in Accordance with Colorado Law

Constitution And Bylaws

Adopted June 21, 1983 • Revised October 22, 2000 • Revised October 31, 2010 • Revised

May 19, 2013 • Revised October 25, 2015 

Revised Oct 23, 2022

PREAMBLE

We, the members of Valley Bible Fellowship, in order to carry out more efficiently the great commission given by Jesus Christ to His Church, do ordain and establish the following Constitution and Bylaws to which we voluntarily submit ourselves.

 

ARTICLE 1 Name and Purpose

1.01 Name: The name of this organization shall be Valley Bible Fellowship

1.02 Purpose: The primary purpose of Valley Bible Fellowship is to bring glory to God by bringing people into a right relationship with God and one another through worship, evangelism, discipleship and fellowship. 

 

ARTICLE 2 Registered Agent and Principle Office

2.01 Principle office: The principle office of this corporation shall be located in Custer county, Colorado.

2.02 Registered office: This corporation shall maintain a registered office and a registered agent that shall be appointed by the Board of Deacons and shall be kept on file in the office of the Secretary of State. 

 

ARTICLE 3 Members

3.01 Membership: Anyone desiring to be a member of Valley Bible Fellowship, sharing the responsibility of decision making, shall meet with an Elder or Elders. Upon a clear profession of faith, and agreement with Valley Bible Fellowship’s statement of faith, the prospective member will be asked to sign the member covenant as stated in sub-article 3.02.

3.02 Membership Covenant: I embrace the living Christ as my Savior and Lord. With God as my Father, the authority of His Word to teach and correct me, and His Spirit to guide me toward the likeness of Jesus, I choose to fellowship with this body of Christ. As we journey together I will, by God’s grace, walk in humility, live in love and forgiveness, pursue peace and harmony, seek justice, pray for wisdom, and take up that part of the work of the Kingdom of God which lies in my path. I long for the coming of the time when Christ will restore all things to the Creator’s eternal purpose. In addition, I agree with the Valley Bible Statement of Faith and will abide by the Constitution and Bylaws of Valley Bible Fellowship. 

3.03 Active Members: A list of active members shall be kept for the purpose of determining a quorum for annual and special meetings of the congregation. If a member no longer attends for a period of at least 90 days, they may be moved to inactive member status. At this point, an Elder will reach out to inquire of the member(s) situation and intentions.

CHURCH LEADERSHIP

Christ is the Head of His body, the church. He is the true source of all the church is and does, and His glory is to be the objective of every act, function, and motive of the body, both individually and corporately. Scripture teaches that the local church is to be led by a plurality of Elders subject to the ultimate authority of Christ and Scripture. A Board of Elders share leadership of Valley Bible Fellowship. All staff, volunteers, and ministry teams are ultimately subject to the authority of the Elder Board. In turn, the Elder Board, staff, volunteers, and ministry teams are servants of Christ and the church body. For certain specified actions described in this Constitution, the prior approval or affirmation of the members of the congregation shall be required.

 

ARTICLE 4 ELDERS

 4.01 GENERAL RESPONSIBILITIES: The Elders, including the Senior Pastor, shall be responsible for the spiritual health, worship, community, and outreach of Valley Bible Fellowship through a servant heart. Elders shall work with the Deacons and exhort the members and congregation to carry out the mission of Valley Bible Fellowship.

4.02 NUMBER: In order to effectively carry out their responsibilities, it is desired that the number of Elders shall consist of no fewer than five (5), but not more than nine (9) voting members, including the Senior Pastor. If the desired number is not obtained through the normal procedures, a candidate(s) can be considered and confirmed by the Elders and membership at a special meeting as outlined in sub-article 8.02. This is to be done prayerfully and with guidance from God's Word.

4.03 QUALIFICATION: In order to serve as an Elder an individual must be a member of Valley Bible Fellowship in good standing, meet the qualifications expressed in 1 Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:6-9; 1 Peter 5:1-3, be pursuing a life of godliness, and be selected as outlined in the election procedure of sub-article 4.05. 

4.04 TENURE: Elders shall serve a term of three (3) years with a reaffirmation vote before beginning a second term. After two (2) full consecutive terms of service on the Elder Board, an Elder shall take at least a one-year leave before he shall be eligible to be elected to serve for another term. An exception may be made to this one-year leave by a 75% majority vote of the combined Elder and Deacon boards present, subject to sub-articles 4.08 and 6.08. Terms shall be staggered such that there is a regular rotation of Elders in each year’s affirmation process. As staff, the Senior Pastor shall not be subject to the leave and term limit requirements described above. 

4.05 ELECTION PROCEDURE: The congregation is encouraged to give names of men they believe will make good candidates to the elders for consideration at any time prior to September 30. The Elders will determine if they shall consider that individual for candidacy. The Elders may interview any potential candidate(s) for elder using 1 Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:6-9; 1 Peter 5:1-3, as a guideline for Consideration. The Elders will present the candidate(s) which are deemed qualified to the Congregation at the annual meeting or a called meeting. The candidate(s) shall be confirmed by a 75% majority vote of the active congregational membership present.

A. 2nd Sunday of October – announce annual meeting and Elder Candidates

B. 3rd Sunday of October – announce annual meeting and Elder Candidates

C. 4th Sunday of October – fellowship meal / annual meeting / election of Elders. (In case of unforeseen circumstances this timeline may be extended, but it may not be shortened).

4.06 REGULAR MEETINGS: The Board of Elders shall meet monthly. The Chairman will make an earnest effort to announce meeting times during regular services. Meetings shall be open to the membership, as observers. Portions of meetings may be closed to the membership to consider sensitive topics. This meeting may be postponed at the discretion of the Chairman, in consultation with the other Officers.

4.07 SPECIAL MEETINGS: Special meetings of the Board of Elders may be called by the chairman or a majority of the Elders. For extreme needs the Chairman may arrive at decisions after polling a majority of Elders in person, by telephone, or by email.

4.08 QUORUM: Decisions of the Elder Board shall be based on scripture, careful consideration of wise counsel and prayerful deliberation. A quorum shall consist of one more than half of the number of Elders on the Board of Elders.

4.09 MAJORITY: Decisions brought to a vote at an Elder meeting will be decided by a simple majority of the required quorum. For matters that require congregational approval, approval of 75% of the Elders in office at that particular time is required.

4.10 VACANCIES: Any vacancy on the board of Elders, occurring due to resignation, may be filled in accordance with sub-article 4.02 of these bylaws. If a vacancy occurs on the Elder Board due to dismissal, or death of an Elder prior to the completion of his term, the remaining Elders shall use sub-article 4.05 to fill that unexpired term. Service of an unexpired term of two (2) years or longer shall constitute a full term for purposes of the two-term limit set forth in sub-article 4.04.

4.11 REMOVAL: Should a situation arise in which it is deemed necessary to remove an Elder from office, a meeting with the Elders shall be held in accordance with I Timothy 5:19 and a unanimous vote of the Elders (excluding the Elder in question) plus a 75% majority vote of the active congregational members present at a special meeting of the membership called in accordance with sub-article 8.02 shall be required.

4.12 PASTOR: The Senior Pastor shall serve on the Elder Board and shall not be subject to the leave and term limit requirements. The Elder board shall meet at least once a year without staff members present, including the Senior Pastor, to consider salary, performance and any other topics related to Pastors and staff.  

 

ARTICLE 5 PASTORS

5.01 GENERAL RESPONSIBILITIES: The Pastor shall be responsible for the spiritual health, worship, community, and outreach of Valley Bible Fellowship through a servant heart. The Pastor shall work with the Elders and Deacons and exhort the members and congregation to carry out the mission of Valley Bible Fellowship. He oversees the general ministry of the church including all support staff. He is a servant-leader who comes under the authority of Christ as the Head of the church, and the Elders in plurality. 

5.02 QUALIFICATION: In order to serve as a Pastor, he must have at least five years of pastoral experience.  While an MDiv (Master of Divinity) is preferred, he must have at least a bachelor’s degree in a ministry related field. In addition, he must meet the qualifications expressed in 1 Timothy 3:1-7, be pursuing a life of godliness, and be selected as outlined in the election procedure of sub-article 5.03.

5.03 PASTOR SELECTION/HIRING PROCEDURE: The congregation is encouraged to give names of men and women they believe will make good candidates for a Pastoral Search Committee to the elders for consideration once the decision has been made to form a Search Committee. The elders will determine which of those individuals, at least (3) from the members, will serve on the Search Committee. In addition, (1) one Elder and (1) Deacon shall also serve on the Search Committee. The Search Committee will eventually, with much prayer and guidance from God’s Word, unanimously present (1) one candidate to the Elders. Upon approval, the elders will present the qualified candidate to the Congregation for consideration. The candidate shall be confirmed by a 75% majority vote of the active congregational members present.

5.04 VACANCIES: Any vacancy of the Pastoral position may be filled in accordance with subsection 5.03 of these bylaws. The remaining Elders shall be responsible for seeing that the pulpit is filled. An Interim Pastor may be appointed by the Elders until a Search Committee can be formed, and a qualified Pastoral candidate be once again presented before the congregation for a vote, per sub-article 5.03. 

5.05 REMOVAL: Should a situation arise in which it is deemed necessary to remove a Pastor, a meeting with the Elders shall be held in accordance with I Timothy 5:19 and a unanimous vote of the Elders (excluding the Pastor/Elder in question) plus a 75% majority vote of the active congregational members present at a special meeting of the membership called in accordance with sub-article 8.02 of these bylaws shall be required.

 

ARTICLE 6 DEACONS

6.01 GENERAL RESPONSIBILITIES: The Board of Deacons shall oversee the physical aspects of Valley Bible Fellowship with the responsibility for managing the finances, facility and mercy ministries to those in need. This is not to say the physical aspects are any less spiritual than the Elder responsibilities. We affirm that all of life is spiritual for the follower of Christ. The Pastor, or one Elder, may serve as the liaison between the Elder and Deacon boards. The Deacons shall submit an annual budget through its Elder liaison for Elder Board and Congregational approval. The Elder liaison shall not be a voting member of the Deacon Board.

6.02 NUMBER: In order to effectively carry out their responsibilities, it is desired that the number Deacons be a minimum of five (5) but no more than nine (9). If the desired number is not obtained through the normal procedures, a candidate(s) can be considered and confirmed by the Elders and membership at a special meeting as outlined in sub-article 8.02. This is to be done prayerfully and with guidance from God's Word.

6.03 QUALIFICATION: In order to serve as a Deacon an individual must be a member of Valley Bible Fellowship in good standing, meet the qualifications expressed in 1 Timothy 3:8-13, be pursuing a life of godliness, and be selected as outlined in the election procedure of sub-article 6.05. 

6.04 TENURE: Deacons shall serve a term of two years with a reaffirmation vote before beginning a second term. After two consecutive terms of service, Deacons shall take at least one year leave before he shall be eligible to be elected to serve for another term. An exception may be made to this one-year leave by a 75% majority vote of the combined Elder and Deacon boards present, subject to sub-articles 4.08 and 6.08. Terms shall be staggered such that there is a regular rotation of Deacons in each year's affirmation process.

6.05 ELECTION PROCEDURE: The following will be the procedure for Election of Deacons: The congregation is encouraged to give names of individuals they believe will make good candidate(s) for Deacon to the Elders or Deacons for their consideration at any time prior to September 30. The Deacons will determine if they shall consider those individuals for candidacy. The Deacons may interview any potential candidate(s) for Deacon using 1 Timothy 3:8-13 as a guideline for consideration. The Deacons will present the candidate(s) which are deemed qualified to the Elder Board and, upon approval, to the congregation at the annual meeting or a called meeting. The candidate(s) shall be elected individually by a 75% majority vote of the active congregational members present.

A. 2nd Sunday of October – announce annual meeting and Deacon Candidates

B. 3rd Sunday of October – announce annual meeting and Deacon Candidates

C. 4th Sunday of October – fellowship meal / annual meeting / election of Deacons. (In case of unforeseen circumstances this timeline may be Extended, but it may not be shortened).

6.06 REGULAR MEETINGS: The Board of Deacons shall meet monthly. The Chairman will make an earnest effort to announce meeting times during regular services. Meetings shall be open to the membership, as observers. Portions of meetings may be closed to the membership to consider sensitive topics. This meeting may be postponed at the discretion of the Chairman, in consultation with the other Officers.

6.07 SPECIAL MEETINGS: Special meetings of the Board of Deacons may be called by the chairman or a majority of the Deacons. For extreme needs the Chairman may arrive at decisions after polling a majority of Deacons in person, by telephone, or by email.

6.08 QUORUM: Decisions of the Deacon Board shall be based on careful consideration of the scriptures, wise counsel and prayerful deliberation. A quorum shall consist of one more than half of the number of Deacons on the Board of Deacons.

6.09 MAJORITY: A decision brought to a vote at a Deacons meeting will be decided by a simple majority of the required quorum.

6.10 VACANCIES: Any vacancy on the board of Deacons, occurring due to resignation, may be filled in accordance with sub-article 6.02 of these bylaws.

6.11 REMOVAL: Removal of a Deacon will be considered only after a conference of the Deacons and Elders together in accordance with I Timothy 5:19, a unanimous vote of the Deacons (excluding the Deacon in question) plus a 75% majority vote of the active congregational members present at a special meeting of the membership called in accordance with these bylaws in section 8.02 shall be required.

6.12 PASTOR: The Pastor or an Elder may attend Board of Deacons meetings however, they will not be a voting member.

 

ARTICLE 7 OFFICERS

7.01 SELECTION: Deacons and Elders shall select their own officers in the manner they choose in a combined meeting with the Elders during the first combined meeting after the annual congregational meeting.

7.02 CHAIRPERSON: Both the Elder and Deacon boards will select a Chairperson. The Chairperson of the Deacons shall be the principal officer of the corporation. They shall preside at all Board of Deacons meetings but an Elder, or a Deacon appointed by the Elders, will preside at meetings of the membership. They may sign, with the Secretary, or any officer authorized by the Board of Deacons, any deeds, mortgages, bonds, contracts, or other instruments which the Board of Deacons have authorized to be executed in accordance with sub-articles 9.01 and 9.05.

7.03 VICE-CHAIRPERSON: In the absence of the Elder or Deacon Chairperson, or in the event of his inability to act, the Vice-Chairperson shall perform any duties of the Chairperson. When so acting, the Vice-Chairperson shall have all the powers of, and be subject to, all the restrictions upon the Chairperson.

7.04 TREASURER: The Treasurer of the Deacon board shall be responsible for all the funds and securities of the corporation. The Treasurer, at the Board of Deacons discretion, may hire an Accountant to fulfill these duties. The Treasurer shall be responsible for seeing to it that all monies received shall be deposited in the name of the corporation, and proper receipts are given annually to each donor. The Treasurer shall provide the Board of Deacons with a monthly financial report, and shall, with approval of the Deacons, authorize individual checks up to $7,500 while conducting authorized corporate affairs. The Treasurer shall not be required to give a bond in order to fulfill the office. 

7.05 SECRETARY: Both the Elder and Deacon boards will select a Secretary. The Secretary shall keep, or cause to be kept, the minutes of the meetings of each respective board. The Secretary of the Deacon board shall keep the minutes of the meetings of the membership, and all corporate records. The Deacon Secretary shall present all notices in accordance with the provisions of these bylaws or as required by law. The Deacon Secretary shall also maintain membership records required by these bylaws, and register the principal agent as required by state statutes.

7.06 COMBINING OFFICES: Only the offices of Secretary and Treasurer may be combined.

 

ARTICLE 8 MEMBERSHIP

8.01 ANNUAL MEETING: There shall be an Annual Meeting of the membership, to be held in accordance with sub-articles 4.05 and 6.05 of these bylaws. Elders shall be elected or re-confirmed each three years of service. Deacons shall be elected or re-confirmed each two years of service. A financial report shall be submitted, and the past year reviewed. 

8.02 SPECIAL MEETINGS: A Special Meeting of the membership may be called by the Board of Elders, provided that it is announced in two regular services, written notice is posted in the church lobby for two regular services, and the purpose of the meeting is clearly stated in each announcement and posting.

8.03 QUALIFICATION OF VOTERS: Anyone voting must be at least 16 years of age and a member of the congregation as defined in these bylaws in sub-articles 3.01 and 3.02.

8.04 MAJORITY VOTE: Decisions brought to a vote at any meeting of the membership will be decided by a simple majority of active members present and voting.

8.05 QUORUM: Decisions of the membership shall be based on careful consideration of the scriptures, wise counsel and prayerful deliberation. A quorum shall consist of one more than half of the number of members on the active member list as specified in sub-article 3.03.

 

ARTICLE 9 CONTRACTS, CHECKS, DEPOSITS, AND FUNDS.

9.01 CONTRACTS: The board of Deacons, with approval of the membership, may authorize any officer or officers, agent or agents of the corporation, in addition to the officers so authorized by these bylaws, to enter into any contract or execute and deliver any instrument in the name of, and on behalf of the corporation. Such authorization must be provided at a special meeting of the membership called specifically for that purpose following the guidelines set forth in these bylaws in sub-article 8.02

9.02 CHECKS AND DRAFTS: All checks, drafts, or orders for the payment of money, notes, or other evidence of indebtedness issued in the name of the corporation shall be signed by such officer or officers, agent or agents of the corporation and in such manner as shall be determined by the Board of Deacons. All such instruments shall be signed by the Treasurer unless otherwise authorized by the Board of Deacons.

9.03 DEPOSITS: All funds of the corporation shall be deposited from time to time to the credit of the corporation in such depositories as the Board of Deacons may select.

9.04 GIFTS: The Board of Deacons may accept, or reject, on behalf of the corporation, any contribution, gift, or bequest, for general purpose, or for any specific purpose of the corporation.

9.05 PROPERTY: The Board of Deacons shall have the authority to purchase or sell real or personal property belonging to the corporation provided that the membership has approved of such an action by a 75% majority vote of the active congregational members present at a special meeting called in accordance with these bylaws in sub-article 8.02

8.06 MAXIMUM EXPENDITURES: The Board of Deacons may authorize the Treasurer to spend up to $7,500 without special authorization. Any funds exceeding that amount must be presented to the membership at a special meeting, or the annual meeting, in accordance with these bylaws in sub-articles 8.01 and 8.02

 

ARTICLE 10 AMENDMENT TO BYLAWS AND ARTICLES OF INCORPORATION

10.01 AMENDMENT PROCEDURE: These bylaws or articles of incorporation may be amended, altered, or repealed by a 75% majority vote of the active congregational members present at a special meeting of the membership called in accordance with these bylaws in sub-article 8.02, or at the Annual Meeting.

 

ARTICLE 11 BOOKS AND RECORDS

11.01 RECORDS: This corporation shall keep financial books and such records as necessary to ensure proper functioning of the corporation.

11.02 AUDIT: The Treasurer shall cause all financial records to be audited once each fiscal year.

11.03 MEMBERS: A register of present and past members will be kept.

 

ARTICLE 12 FISCAL YEAR

12.01 Fiscal Year: The fiscal year for this corporation shall be from October 1st through September 30.

 

ARTICLE 13 DISSOLUTION CLAUSE

13.01 DISSOLUTION OF CORPORATION: Upon dissolution of this corporation, the Board of Deacons shall, after paying, or making provision for the payment of, all the liabilities of the corporation, dispose of all assets of the corporation exclusively for the purpose of the corporation in such a manner, or to such organization or organizations, not contrary to the cause of Christ in this World, organized and operated exclusively for charitable, educational, religious, or community service purposes as shall at the time qualify as an exempt organization or organizations under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 (or the corresponding provision of any future United States Internal Revenue Service law) as the board of Deacons shall determine. Any such assets not to be so disposed of shall be disposed of by the District Court of the county in which the principal of the corporation is then located, exclusively for such purposes or to such organization or organizations as said court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.