In Churchright, News, Newsletter

During the July 2017 General Conference Convention, our members, meeting in formal business session, voted to adopt our current General Conference bylaws. Because these revised bylaws were in some parts significantly different from our previous ones, the members-in-session adopted an accompanying resolution to allow each GC-affiliated congregation three full years to bring its own bylaws and practices into agreement with the newly revised GC bylaws.

Those three full years ended July 2020. But at that time, we all were focused on the rapidly spreading pandemic caused by COVID-19. Bylaws were the last thing on our minds! Our congregations concentrated on protecting their members and just surviving! Therefore, with the support of the GC board of directors and district superintendents, the decision was made to postpone that July 2020 deadline an additional year and a half until January 1, 2022 — a total of four-and-a-half years following the adoption of our GC bylaws.

Since July 2020, however, and especially throughout 2021, the district superintendents and district area representatives have been reminding our congregations of the January 1 deadline. They are working with congregations to bring their practices and bylaws into agreement with the GC bylaws. We certainly do not want to lose any of our affiliated congregations and their members, but it is necessary that all GC-affiliated congregations conduct themselves in agreement with the bylaws that the GC membership itself adopted. There is no point in having bylaws if we do not follow them. Congregations and members who do not are choosing to disaffiliate themselves from the General Conference.

Within a few weeks of your receiving this issue, the January 1 deadline will arrive. Do you know the status of your congregation and of the membership? Please speak with your pastor, area representative, or district superintendent. We sincerely will miss you if you choose to leave us.

— Loren Stacy

GC President