To all members of the IAoC with an email ending by @bible-academy.org, please remember that we have an election in 2019 to replace two members of the House of Elders (International Board). End of terms
Please submit your representative or submit your name.
Election Years: 2021 - 2025 - 2029 - 2033 - 2037 - 2041 The Symposium is held each year between January the 2nd and February 28 in which the General Assembly is included.
Because of the World Time of each country and the task required for our orders, the symposium can be between three (3) days and fifteen days.
For Churches or congregations, rules see here the Formal code of doctrine and discipline at the chaplaincy site
The Canon Law says:
003.0.1 There shall be a General Assembly of this Religious Organization named the Symposium consisting of the Executive Board of Elders known as the House of Bishops and the House of Elders, Advisers and Accountability in which Houses shall sit and deliberate separately; and in all deliberations, freedom of debate shall be allowed. Either House may originate and propose legislation, and all acts of the Canon Law and the Canon Law regarding the essence of its nomenclature shall be adopted and authenticated by both Houses. They apply a rule that will affect the totality of the organization's community. Changing the structure of this organization fundamentally.
003.0.2 In normal times the two Houses or Boards govern their own business. The Board of Executive Elders (House of Bishops) regards on all religious and spiritual matters. And The Board of Elders Advisers and Accountability regards all temporal matters.
003.0.3 In some cases both Boards will be involved; for example choosing a new minister, the request is done by any of the Boards A) but the search, publicity and hiring are done by the Board of Elders, B) The Training, ordination and posting are done by the House of Bishops.
The local Organization's administrative body shall be its Board of Elders, which is authorized to provide administrative leadership for this organization IAOC.
• The local Clergy Authority is the Permanent Synod. They can have a council or local synod to apply legislation but any change or requirement that is not in this Canon Law needs to be approved by the Permanent Synod and/or the Symposium depending on demand. The Local must obey all local government laws, by-laws and rules, and this can be a reason for an amendment of our Canon Law and the reason have to be specified in the document.
• Responsibilities: The Board of Elders shall be responsible for providing the association with a set of Canon Law, which are subject to approval by SYMPOSIUM and the Elder serving the Region, and for submitting the approved Canon Law to the Elder serving the Region. The Board of Elders shall also have charge of all matters pertaining to the documents of the legal organization and incorporation or registration, property, risk management, and physical and financial affairs of the association. The Board of Elders shall also be responsible for collecting and disbursing funds, keeping adequate records, and making timely reports to the members.
• Membership: Members of the Board of Elders must be members in good standing.
• Limitation of Liability: No member of the Board of Elders shall be liable for any act or failure to act by any other member of the Board of Elders or by any employee of the Local organism. No member of the Board of Elders shall be liable for any loss arising from any fault in the title to any property acquired by the Local organization. No member of the Board of Elders shall be liable for any loss arising from any fault in any security in which the Local organism might invest, or from bankruptcy, insolvency, or wrongful act by any person to whom the Local organization might entrust any of its property. No member of the Board of Elders shall be liable for any loss due to error of judgment or oversight on his/her part, or for any other loss whatsoever occurring in the carrying out of the duties of his/her office unless this loss arises from the member’s willful neglect or fraudulent or criminal actions.
• Indemnity: The Local organism shall protect every member of the Board of Elders against all costs arising in relation to his/her relations with the Local organization unless they are occasioned by his/her willful neglect or fraudulent or criminal actions
007.0.3 Lay Delegate
The association shall elect one (1) lay person Members in good standing, or part thereof, to serve as Lay Delegate. The Lay Delegate shall be a Member in good standing of this Local organism.
1. Election: The Lay Delegate shall be elected at the next regular Synod following each Symposium. A majority of the votes cast shall be required to elect.
2. The term of Office: The term of office of Lay Delegate shall be two (2) years.
3. Duties: The duties of the Lay Delegate shall be to represent the congregation at the Symposium and Regional Council/Synod, to communicate with all Members of the Local organization regarding the IAoC concerns and policies.
4. Funding: To the best of its ability, the Local organism shall fund the Lay Delegate’s transportation, registration, and per diem at Symposium and Regional Council/Synod.
5. Alternate Lay Delegate: The organism shall elect one (1) Alternate Lay Delegate. The election, term of office, and funding shall be the same as for Lay Delegate.
6. Notification to Alternate Lay Delegate: When the Lay Delegate is unable or unwilling to perform the duties of the Lay Delegate, the Lay Delegate shall immediately inform the Alternate Lay Delegate and the Admin. Sec. of the Local Board of Elders. If the Alternate Lay Delegate is unable to serve, the Local Board of Elders shall appoint someone to serve in the absence of the Alternate Lay Delegate.
7. The Alternate Lay Delegate Duties: shall be to stay informed of IAoC concerns and policies and to be prepared to assume the duties of any Lay Delegate who is unable or unwilling to perform the duties of Lay Delegate, including but not limited to representing the Local organism at the Symposium and Regional Council/Synod.
8. Discipline: The local organism cannot condone disloyalty, unbecoming conduct, or dereliction of duty on the part of any Lay Delegate or Alternate Lay Delegate. Therefore, the Local Board of Elders may remove by a majority vote of the full Board of Elders any Lay Delegate or Alternate Lay Delegate guilty of the above. A petition presented to the Local Board of Elders and signed by twenty-five percent (25%) of the Members in good standing of the association may also initiate such a procedure.
9. The appeal of Discipline: A disciplined Lay Delegate or Alternate Lay Delegate may appeal the action to the Local organism at its next regular regional Council/Synod. The decision of the regional Council is final. Until the regional Council consider the appeal, the position held by the disciplined Lay Delegate shall be filled by an Alternate Lay Delegate.
007.11 Fiscal Year
January 1st to December 31st
007.12 Budget Process: At each Symposium, the Board of Elders shall submit an operating budget for the coming fiscal year. The budgeted expenses may not exceed the anticipated income. A budget is adopted by a simple majority vote of the voting members present at the meeting. Once a budget is approved, the Board may authorize and expend the funds as budgeted. The Board may reallocate funds, as long as the reallocation does not exceed ten percent (10%) of the approved obligation or indebtedness that exceeds $5,000.
007.13 Financial Indebtedness: The Board of Elders shall not become indebted in an amount greater than Fifteen Thousand Dollars ($15,000) unless the said limit is increased by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the voting members present at a duly called special meeting.
Income received from the IAOC Endowment Fund shall be used for purposes other than general operating expenses.
007.14 Organization Funds: All funds and property received by or coming into the custody of the Organization belong to and are trust funds and the property of IAOC congregation, to be held and expended only for the purposes authorized and only in accordance with the regulations and/or written agreements prescribed or accepted by The Board of Elders of the Organization
007.15 Loans: The Board of Elders may make short-term loans to the General Fund up to the total of thirty percent (30%) of the restricted funds.
007.16 Social Responsibility: In keeping with IAOC Christian Organization guidelines, expenditures and investments must meet social responsibility criteria. All such purchases and investments shall be from companies: that do not produce products, offer services, or operate in a manner which might be unsafe to the consumer or threatening to our environment; that is not predominantly involved in the production of war material; that is not dependent on discrimination on the basis of race, colour, sex, disability, affectional or sexual orientation, age, national origin, or religion; that do not exploit the poor or deprived for their business success; and that provide safe and healthy work environments and fair and equal employment opportunities for all persons in their labour force.
007.17 The accounts of the Organization, including all endowment funds, shall receive an outside financial review or limited audit each year by a certified public accountant. The annual financial review or limited audit shall be available for Organization members’ inspection.
007.18 Audit: At the end of each fiscal year, the Finance Committee Chairman, with the Board’s concurrence, shall arrange for an audit of the books of account and shall report thereon to the Board and to the congregation in a newsletter or other communication.
007.19 Execution of Instruments: Checks and other orders on the funds or credit of the organization, and all contracts and instruments in writing by the organization shall be valid and binding upon the organization only when executed by such officers as shall be designated and authorized by the Board of Elders
008 Rules of Procedure
Unless otherwise specified herein, Robert’s Rules of Order shall govern the Board of Elders & the Symposium. The Executive Committee may appoint a parliamentarian and such other persons as may be necessary to assist at each congregational meeting. The Executive Committee may appoint a parliamentarian to serve at Board meetings. Any Voting Member of the Organization, including members of the Board, may serve as a parliamentarian.
At all meetings of the Board, Executive Committee, and the Organization, Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall be the applicable authority on matters of parliamentary procedure to the extent that they are not inconsistent with these Canon Law, the Articles of Incorporation of the Organization, or applicable law.
The Organization shall indemnify any person who is or was an employee, agent, representative, member of the Board of Trustees, or Steering Committee volunteer of the Organization against any liability asserted against such person and incurred in the course and scope of his or her duties or functions within the Organization to the maximum extent allowable Canon Law, provided the person acted in good faith and did not engage in an act or omission that is intentional, willfully or wantonly negligent, or done with conscious indifference or reckless disregard for the safety of others. The provisions of this article shall not be deemed exclusive of any other rights to which such person may be entitled under any bylaw, agreement, insurance policy, the vote of members or otherwise.
008.2 Real Property
At any meeting of the Board of Elders or any Symposium where the sale, encumbrance, or acquisition by the Organization of real property or improvements thereon is to be discussed, a notice of the same shall be published in the official Organization newsletter at least thirty (30) days before the said meeting and read from the pulpit at least two (2) consecutive Sundays immediately preceding the meeting. Any action requiring the sale, encumbrance, or acquisition by the Organization of real property shall require a two-thirds (2/3) vote of those voting members present and voting at a congregational meeting with such action in its call.
Memo: since 2017 classes A and B have had the right to vote a new Canon Law book is in progress for a new edition including the new B class.
Affiliated Groups: Voluntary organizations of Association members, designed to further the interests of the organization, may be formed with the consent of the Executive Elders Board. Such groups shall be regarded as integral parts of the Organization. The Executive Board of Elders may appoint a liaison to the affiliated group (from the Permanent Synod) for information and communication and the religious aspect. The affiliated groups may use the facilities of the organization, under the supervision of the Synod. Each affiliated group shall submit a written annual report of its activities to the Executive Elders Board, and shall submit its records, books of account, and vouchers to the Synod upon request.
008.4 Other Legal and Public Relations Provisions (Affiliation)
This Organization is a member congregation of the Universal Fellowship of IAOC Organization; ascribes to the government, doctrine, vision, mission, and values of IAOC; and agrees to abide by the IAOC Canon Law and decisions made by the Symposium.
A. Successor Corporation: Interdenominational Assembly of Churches is the not-for-profit organization designated to receive the Organization's property in the event of dissolution or abandonment of the Organization or disaffiliation from the IAOC, in accordance with IAOC Canon Law. (NGO)
B. Disaffiliation: A decision to disaffiliate from the IAOC shall require a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Members present at a Local Council called for the purpose of disaffiliating and shall be decided in accordance with IAOC Canon Law.
The purpose of this Organization is Christian fellowship, worship, witness, and service, borne in the cooperation, program development, and implementation of IAOC and local Organization Canon Law, Standard Operating Procedures, and Policies.
D. Affiliate Members and Friends
Criteria for Membership: Any Christian who has completed a membership class in good standing is a probation member who registers his/her attendance, provides identifiable financial support, makes a definite service contribution, and demonstrates interest and loyalty. Attended worship regularly for 3 months or more, made and kept a financial commitment, and obtained the recommendation of a member who shall serve as the person’s Sponsor to provide spiritual support and assist with assimilation into the life of the Organization may become a Member by participating in the Rite of Membership.
Friends of the Organization: A person who, for one reason or another, feels unable to become a Member but who supports the goals of the Organization and wants to be a part of the work of the Organization may be designated as a “Friend of the Organization.”
1. List of Friends of the Organization: The list of Friends of the Organization shall be maintained by the Admin. Sec.
2. Limitations on Friends of the Organization: Friends may serve on appointed committees and may participate in all activities of the Organization. Friends may not vote at SYMPOSIUM or serve on the Board of Elders. Friends shall not be considered in determining the number of Lay Delegates.
3. Discipline of Members and Friends: The Organization cannot condone disloyalty or unbecoming conduct on the part of any Member or Friend. The Board of Elders is empowered to remove by majority vote any Member or Friend or take other appropriate disciplinary action.
• Right to Appeal: The action of the Board may be appealed to the next regular SYMPOSIUM or a Special SYMPOSIUM called for that purpose. The decision of the SYMPOSIUM is final. Pending the outcome of the appeal of discipline, the disciplined Member or Friend shall remain under discipline and shall retain the right to vote at regular and Special SYMPOSIUM, including the SYMPOSIUM held to consider the appeal. If the discipline was to remove the person from membership, then the disciplined former Member shall not be eligible to vote at the SYMPOSIUM held to consider the appeal.
• Appeal Process: The request for an appeal shall be submitted to the Admin. Sec. of the Board of Elders within thirty (30) days following the date when the inactive Member was dropped from the local Organization membership roll.
• The Board of Elders may consider the appeal and reverse its earlier decision without taking the matter to the SYMPOSIUM.
• Should the Board of Elders sustain its earlier decision and the inactive Member wishes the appeal to continue, the request shall be included as an agenda item for the next regular SYMPOSIUM or a Special SYMPOSIUM called for the purpose of considering the appeal.
008.5 Expectations of Members and Affiliates.
Members and Affiliates are expected to participate actively in the Organization's activities and to make a recordable financial pledge to the Organization each fiscal year. The financial contribution should represent an amount judged by the member or affiliate to be a fair share of the Organization's needs, in light of the member’s or affiliate’s income and means, and the fact that generous contributions from others in the past have sustained and built the Society we enjoy today.
008.6 Open Records. All records of the Organization other than those of a personal nature shall be made available for inspection by any member during reasonable office hours.
008.7 Interpretation. These Canon Law shall be liberally interpreted in order to accomplish their basic intent, which is hereby stated to be the efficient operation and management of the Organization in order to accomplish the purposes stated in the Organization's mission statement.
008.8 Bonding. The President, President-Elect, Treasurer and other authorized signatories may be bonded at the expense of the Organization in an amount determined by the Board.
008.9 Protection of Non-Profit Status. Neither the Organization, the Boards, nor any officer or employee of the Organization shall take any action or allow any activity or use of Organization property which shall endanger the non-profit corporate status or charitable, the tax-exempt status of the Organization or its property. Nothing in these Canon Law shall be construed to allow a violation of this section.
008.10 Representation. The president, or any other member of the Fellowship, who is specifically authorized by the Fellowship, the Executive Elders Board or the Board of Elders may represent the entire Fellowship in any public or private meeting. The Social Action Committee may, with general notice to the Fellowship or with approval of the Executive Committee, act or speak on a social action issue that has not been addressed by the Fellowship provided the action is consistent with Christian principles. Such speech or action will represent the views of the committee, and not necessarily the entire Fellowship.
008.11 Public Statements in the Name of the Organization. Public statements in the name of the Society on social or other public issues will be made only after a vote and must include the vote of individuals within the Society for and against. This does not limit the right of individuals or groups within the Society to make statements in their own name.
008.12 Authority. The ultimate authority to act in the Organization resides in the Archbishop here called the Bishop.
008.13 Authority of Congregation. The ultimate authority of the organization (The Two Board) is vested in the congregation as expressed in Annual and Special Meetings. The following powers may not be delegated, but may only be exercised by the congregation: (1) the employment or release of the Minister and the amount of the Minister’s annual salary and benefits; (2) the location of any organization buildings and grounds and their purchase or sale; (3) the requirements of membership; (4) approval of the annual budget for the operating fund; (5) ratification or amendment of the Canon Law.
008.14 Initial Adoption of the Canon Law
The initial adoption of these Canon Law shall be by a majority vote of those persons attending a meeting called and held for such purpose, without regard to any voting qualifications or requirements provided for in these Canon Law.
These Canon Law may be amended at any Symposium by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the members of the Organization eligible to vote at the meeting at which such matter is considered, provided, however, that the text of any proposed changes has been published in the newsletter and mailed to all members of record at least thirty (30) days prior to such meeting. The Steering Committee may submit to the Organization any proposed amendment that the Steering Committee has approved to such submission by a majority vote of its members. In addition, the Steering Committee shall submit to the Organization any amendment received by the Board which shall have been proposed by a petition signed by at least ten percent (10%) of the members of the Organization eligible to vote.
009.0 The Interdenominational Assembly of Churches is an Organization of the Christian denomination, based in the city of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Founded in 2010 after a reform of the ex-church. It has a majority of English followers.
Our branch did not adopt a congregationalist polity, remains semi-episcopal, and has an Episcopalian structure. (1) is administrated by an Archbishop and two Board of Elders: a) The Executive Elder Board Members who have ordained ministers known as House of Bishops in other organizations and by The Elder Board composed of clergy and lay members.
Since 2010, The Archbishop is The Most Rev. Eric M. Gagnon.
The Church/Organization, which uses English as the liturgical language, also endorses and teaches a catechism, French is in usage in a specific environment where the population constitutes the majority.
The Organization acknowledges the authority of the House of Bishops, its Constitution and Canons Laws.
The business affairs of the association shall at all times be governed by the Constitution and Canons of the Interdenominational Assembly of Churches, the Constitution, and the provisions of these Canon Laws.
The provisions of these Canon Law shall be equally applicable to men and women. The usage of the pronoun He (he) replaces a function, not a gender. Furthermore, this congregation affirms and promotes the full participation of persons in all our activities and endeavours including membership, programming, hiring practices, and the calling of religious professionals, without regard to race, colour, gender, physical or mental challenge, affectionate or sexual orientation, class or national origin.
We are an OPEN-DOOR Christian Fellowship that is unconstrained by church dogma, liberated by reason and nourished by Jesus in passion for peace, justice, and diversity. We are a liberal religious community that draws inspiration from its Judeo-Christian heritage as well as the wisdom of world religions, our direct experience of women and men, humanist teachings, and the spiritual teachings of Earth-centered traditions. We include believers, doubters, and seekers; those who pray, those who meditate, and those who pour their souls out in song. We pledge to support one another in our searches for truth and meaning.
IAoC is a service for people of many denominations in the community. We encourage individuals in their spiritual quests, we respect the diversity of religious beliefs, we work cooperatively with people of all faiths, and even if most members consider themselves Christian, we work together to offer an open-door fellowship of care and counselling to all faiths and to non-believers as well via our Organization.
To prevent membership by persons who prove to be a risk to the health and well-being of others in the congregation or of the congregation as a whole, the Canon Law state that the board will vote to approve new members at its monthly meetings. Not admitting such individuals in the first place saves the congregation from having to revoke their membership (see “Removal of Membership”). A positive aspect of the board’s voting to approve membership for each person is that board members are made aware of each new person joining the congregation and we send a letter of welcome to each new member.
Groups that wish to take over our congregation, that is, people who wish to compromise the integrity of the congregation and its purpose, are the second group to whom membership should be denied. Admittedly this situation is rare, but it is not unheard of. Takeover attempts may be by other religious groups, by secular groups interested in the land on which the church is situated, or by single-issue groups that wish to make the congregation a force for their particular causes. The goals of these groups go against congregational polity and violate the purpose of the congregation, they couldn't be legally accomplished because our board structure is a safeguard as semi-Episcopalian and semi- Congregational.
Criteria for Membership: Any Christian who has completed a membership class in good standing is a probation member who registers his/her attendance, provides identifiable financial support, makes a definite service contribution, and demonstrates interest and loyalty. Attended worship regularly for 3 months or more, made and kept a financial commitment, and obtained the recommendation of a member who shall serve as the person’s Sponsor to provide spiritual support and assist with assimilation into the life of the association may become a Member by participating in the Rite of Membership.
All members MUST sign our log book at all activities., even during a one-t- one meeting.
Right of the vote becomes effective at the 1st board meeting after thirty (30) days of approval.
• In General. The corporation shall have two classes of members. Clergy/Local organization and Lay
• Individual Members. Individual members shall be natural persons. Individual members shall become members upon paying the annual dues in the amount set from time to time by the Board of Elders Advisers and Accountability. Individual members shall have the right to vote for Individual Member Representative Elders Advisers and Accountability. The annual membership dues are set by the Board of Elders. The fiscal year is the calendar from January through December. Dues shall be kept current in order to participate in the association programs and benefits.
010.1.2 To qualify for membership in IAOC as Minister (clergy), the applicant must:
• Either serve as a minister with an agency or organization and have an interest in a supporter of the objectives and goals of IAOC.
• Submit an application for membership.
• Pay yearly membership dues, Minister's donation fees plus Members donation fees.
010.1.3 Additional Rights, Obligations and Qualifications. Either type of membership shall have such additional rights, obligations and qualifications as may be established from time to time by the Board of Elders.
010.2 NEW CLASS OF MEMBERSHIP as of 2014.07.14
Membership requires both discipleship and love (cf. John 13:8). Church membership affiliates an individual believer with the IAOC congregation. It is often a formalized public declaration of commitment to the church, in a manner that varies. The duties and privileges of love in the visible church, which constitute the orderliness and ministry of the church that is incumbent upon every member, it is represented in the church by customary conventions such as membership rolls, public profession, records, membership vows, Symposiums, the privilege of voting, church courts, judicial procedures, and the like.
010.2.1 Classes of Members
The corporation is authorized to establish Class A members and Class B members as follows:
(1) The Class A members shall be entitled to receive notice of and to attend all meetings of the members of the Corporation and each Class A member shall have one (1) vote at each such meeting, except for meetings at which only members of another class are entitled to vote separately as a class.
(2) Except as otherwise provided by the Canada Not-for-Profit Corporations Act, S.C. 2009,
c.23 the Class B members shall not be entitled to receive notice of, attend or vote at meetings of the members of the Corporation.
1. Membership Class A in the Local organization shall be acquired as provided in the Constitution and Canons of the IAOC. Of the members of the Local organization, only those shall be entitled to vote at any Local organization meeting who shall be adult communicants and who for at least six months prior to that meeting shall have been faithful attendants at the services of the Church or the Local organization, unless for good cause prevented, faithful contributors to its support, and faithful in working, praying and giving for the spread of the kingdom of God; these facts to be determined in each case by the Board in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution and Canons of the IAOC., to be added to members of the previous Canon Law
2. Membership Class B is any person using our resources and services who does not fulfill the Class A conditions. Interdenominational Assembly of Churches Class B is a straightforward process. Specifically: If you accept the Articles of Faith as a Christian, then you can consider yourself part of the Interdenominational Assembly of Churches. Any person who is Christian of any denomination, shall be enrolled in the membership of this Church by making a pledge each year and it is equal to confirmation of accepting church beliefs, and rules and you must be involved in activities and supporting the church. All internet members are Class B if they never assist in any events in person. This "confirmation" is accomplished by receiving your "Membership Certificate". Thereafter, you will be greeted by your fellow members! To prepare for membership, to understand its benefits and responsibilities, and to ask questions, there are Inquirers' Classes several times a year. Times and dates for the class will be published in a newsletter, the official Local organization website and on this website "Events Calendar". As stated, an internet membership has the right to vote. Please note an internet member is the same as an online member that uses specific tools to accomplish his membership duty, even if he uses the internet for operating the tools. Tools that require members' ID and Password and contain members' light biography. An Internet member can leave the church without any reason, the only requirement is to stop all church activities.
• Both kinds of membership names must be recorded in a log book. NEW CLASS OF MEMBERSHIP as of 2014.07.14
• Membership requires both discipleship and love (cf. John 13:8). Church membership affiliates an individual believer with the IAOC congregation. It is often a formalized public declaration of commitment to the church, in a manner that varies. The duties and privileges of love in the visible church, which constitute the orderliness and ministry of the church that is incumbent upon every member, it is represented in the church by customary conventions such as membership rolls, public profession, records, membership vows, Symposiums, the privilege of voting, church courts, judicial procedures, and the like.
• All membership names must be recorded in a log book.
• Member who does not have registered attendance, identified financial support, definite service contribution, and demonstrated interest and loyalty within the preceding period of six (6) months to one (1) year may be removed from the list of Members in good standing and placed on a list of inactive Members.
• The Board of Elders shall notify this Member in writing that the Member has been placed on a list of inactive Members and is not eligible to vote at any business meeting of the Local organization.
• If the inactive Member has not attended, provided identifiable financial support, and demonstrated further interest or loyalty for a period of two (2) months immediately following notification, the Board of Elders shall have the authority, at its discretion, to drop any such Member from the local organization membership roll.
• The inactive Member may be restored to the list of Members in good standing by a vote of the Board of Elders without a public reception into membership.
• The inactive Member who is not restored during the period of two (2) months immediately following notification shall be considered a former Member.
• A former Member may be restored to the list of Members in good standing after meeting the criteria for membership and participating in the Rite of Membership.
• Right to Appeal. A decision by the Board of Elders to drop an inactive Member from the local organization membership roll may be appealed by the inactive Member to the next regular SYMPOSIUM or a Special SYMPOSIUM called for that purpose. The decision of the SYMPOSIUM is final. Pending the outcome of the appeal, the inactive Member is not eligible to vote at any business meeting of the Local organization.
• Appeal process. The request for an appeal shall be submitted to the Admin. Sec. of the Board of Elders within thirty (30) days following the date when the inactive Member was dropped from the local organization membership roll.
• The Board of Elders may consider the appeal and reverse its earlier decision without taking the matter to the SYMPOSIUM.
• Should the Board of Elders sustain its earlier decision and the inactive Member wishes the appeal to continue, the request shall be included as an agenda item for the next regular SYMPOSIUM or a Special SYMPOSIUM called for the purpose of considering the appeal.
010.2.2 A clergyman membership automatically becomes a Class A member.
010.3.1 A Voting Member is any Member who has attained the age of sixteen (16) years and has been a Member of the Church for at least ninety (180) days. Only Voting Members may vote at Symposiums. A Pledging Friend is any person who is in general sympathy with the purposes, goals, and programs of the Church, and who makes a pledge or contribution of record thereto, but who chooses not to sign the membership book.
010.3.2 Individuals may become “Voting Members” one hundred and eighty (180) days after having signed the membership book, having been acknowledged by the Steering Committee, and having pledged a contribution of money to the Church within the guidelines as approved by the congregation.
Individuals between the ages of fifteen (15) and eighteen (18) may become “Associate Members” upon fulfilling the requirements for Voting Members. Such Associate Members will have full voting privileges and may be elected as a Trustee as described in these Canon Law. An Associate Member may not be elected as an Officer described in these Canon Law.
010.3.3 Each member shall be entitled to one (1) vote on each matter submitted for a vote in accordance with the policy and procedures established in the Articles of the Canon Law. However, because a piece of paper cannot listen to and reason with meeting participants, proxy voting shall not be allowed.
010.3.4 Board of Elders may change the status of a member to the non-voting status of associate member only after a report from the Membership Committee recommends such action. Any person whose status has been changed from member to associate member may change that status by written notification to the Board of Elders and by supporting the Fellowship through financial or personal participation.
010.3.5 Any living person who has signed the membership book and has not resigned is a member of the church. Voting members are members who are at least sixteen (16) years of age and who have made a financial contribution of record to the church within the last six (6) months. Each member of the church shall have all the rights and privileges of church membership. Members who are voting members at least forty-five (45) days before a church business meeting may vote at that meeting. However, on matters pertaining to the purchase, sale or mortgage of church property, only voting members who are eighteen (18) years of age or older may vote.
010.3.6 Individuals may become “Voting Members” thirty (30) days after having signed the membership book and having made a substantial financial contribution of record during the current church year.
010.3.7 A member of the Society shall be qualified to vote at any meeting of the Society at which a vote is taken if the member (a) is at least sixteen (16) years of age, (b) has contributed to Church expenses, apart from morning offerings, for the year preceding such meeting, (c) has attended on divine worship with the society for at least one year before such meeting. A member who has so attended four (4) or more times in such year shall be deemed to have met the attendance requirement of this section. No proxy shall be recognized at any meeting of the Society.
010.4 Honorary Membership Type 2. A member who is no longer able to participate in the activities of the local organizations but who wishes to retain an affiliation may be elected to an Honorary Membership in the local organizations upon recommendation of the Membership Committee, favourable action by the Board of Elders, and notification to the person that Honorary Membership has been conferred.
BOARD OF ELDERS
012 The Board of Elders is a board of Adviser and Accountability
A Board of Elders, named Elders, is a necessary component of any legal religious organization. However, for the purposes of creating a culture that honours a more local organization's distribution of power, we use the traditional church or Local organization terminology. The board implies and commands an ethic of wisdom and careful consideration in recommendations that benefit the greater good of the corporation.
The Board of Elders shall be responsible for providing the Local organization with a set of Canon laws, which is subject to approval by SYMPOSIUM and the Elder serving the Region, and for submitting the approved Canon Law to the Elder serving the Region.
The Board of Elders shall also have charge of all matters pertaining to the documents of the legal organization and incorporation or registration, Local organization property, risk management, and physical and financial affairs of the Local organization. The Board of Elders shall also be responsible for collecting and disbursing funds, keeping adequate Local organization records, and making timely reports to the Congregation and IAOC House of Bishops.
• Conflict of Interest – More than one person from a household, family, or committed relationship; someone who is a Local organization employee; or someone who is a Clergy Candidate shall not be eligible to serve on the Board of Elders.
• Composition – There shall be five (5) members of the Board of Elders, including a member of the clergy (Bishop) who shall serve as Moderator. Members of the Board of Elders must be Members in good standing.
• Meetings – The Board of Elders shall meet at least once a month and no fewer than ten (10) times a year. Except for executive sessions, meetings shall be open to the congregation and to the public to attend as Observers without voice or vote.
• Minutes – Minutes and financial reports shall be available to Members of the Local organization within two (2) weeks after each meeting. Minutes shall include a record of those present and decisions made. A copy of the minutes shall become part of the permanent Local organization records. For Members and Public access, the Permanent Synod Secretary holds the minutes and gives a copy upon request.
• Minutes shall include a record of those present and decisions made. A copy of the minutes shall become part of the permanent Local organization records.
• Vacancies: In the event of a vacancy on the Board of Elders, the Board of Elders may appoint a qualified Member to fill the vacancy until the next meeting, when an election shall be held to fill the unexpired term.
• Discipline: The Local organization cannot condone disloyalty, unbecoming conduct, or dereliction of duty on the part of any member of the Board of Elders. Therefore, the Board of Elders may remove by a majority vote of the full Board of Elders any of its members guilty of the above, with the exception of the Clergy who must be disciplined in accordance with the IAOC Canon Law. A petition was submitted to the Admin. Sec. and signed by twenty-five percent (25%) of the Members in good standing of the local organization may also initiate such a procedure.
• Right to appeal: A disciplined member of the Board of Elders may appeal the action to the local organization at its next regular SYMPOSIUM or at a Special SYMPOSIUM which may be called for this purpose. The decision of the SYMPOSIUM is final. Until the SYMPOSIUM to considers the appeal, the position held by the disciplined member of the Board of Elders shall be considered vacant.
• Limitation of Liability: No member of the Board of Elders shall be liable for any act or failure to act by any other member of the Board of Elders or by any employee of the Local organization. No member of the Board of Elders shall be liable for any loss arising from any fault in the title to any property acquired by the Local organization. No member of the Board of Elders shall be liable for any loss arising from any fault in any security in which the Local organization might invest, or from bankruptcy, insolvency, or wrongful act by any person to whom the Local organization might entrust any of its property. No member of the Board of Elders shall be liable for any loss due to error of judgment or oversight on his/her part, or for any other loss whatsoever occurring in the carrying out of the duties of his/her office unless this loss arises from the member’s own willful neglect or fraudulent or criminal actions.
• Indemnity: The Local organization shall protect every member of the Board of Elders against all costs arising in relation to his/her relations with the Local organization unless they are occasioned by his/her own willful neglect or fraudulent or criminal actions.
Official Officers – The official officers of the Board of Elders are Secretary and Chief Executive Director, Secretary Vice-Chief Executive, Administrative Secretary, and Chief Finance Officer & Assets.
The Administration Secretary shall be responsible for ensuring the maintenance of official correspondence and Local organization records, and for ensuring that accurate records are kept of all meetings of the Board of Elders and of the Congregation. The Admin Sec. is the officer authorized to receive petitions submitted to the Board of Elders.
Membership List: The list of Members in good standing shall be maintained by the Administration Secretary, who shall report changes monthly to the Board of Elders
The Chief Finance Officer & Assets shall be responsible for ensuring the preparation and maintenance of all financial records. This shall include a monthly financial report to the Board and an annual financial report to the Symposium. The monthly and annual financial reports shall reflect receipts, disbursements, and outstanding financial obligations.
012.1 The board Chairman's name is Secretary and Chief Executive Director, elected for a period of 4 years plus a transition year (1) maximum; he doesn’t have to be a member of the clergy. The Chairman is appointed as mentioned earlier and he will establish an election process based on considering both the desire of the corporation members, and the most powerful synergy possible in the corporation. The board makes collective recommendations for the spiritual priorities and directions of the corporation, the content and methodologies of the meetings, financial recommendations, projects and the overall structuring and evolution of the organization. The board is responsible for appointing a Secretary (Administrative Secretary) and Treasurer (Chief Finance Officer & Assets) and seeing that the responsibilities of all Officials are carried out in a mindfully and ethical way.
012.2 The Elders Board's role is the guardian of the faith and advisory to the chain of command.
The board must be composed of 3 senior pastor members, but for the rest, it can be a mix of members ecclesiastic or regular civil members name Lay. The board is composed of a minimum of 3 candidates and can be up to 21 members. The board has no power over any members of the corporation, hits structure or operation; only the Bishop or Executive Elders Board has that power. Exceptionally the board will have authority per interim if it has no Bishop or if he cannot accomplish his duty as a rational manager and it has to be endorsed by a doctor in medicine and all members of the Elders Board: Executive Elders + The Board of Elders and Accountability.
012.3 The Bishop (Archbishop) can lead and manage without the board of Elders, but it is very recommended that he listens to the recommendations and act as he thinks of what is good for the ministries. If a mistake is made in good faith, the Board of Elders will not have any sanction(s) against the Bishop but will strongly recommend the new path to be followed.
012.4 A. General Authority. There shall be a Board of Elders for the Corporate, which shall supervise the business, property and of the Corporate. The Board of Elders shall be vested with the powers to appoint and remunerate agents and employees, to disburse the funds of the Corporate, and to adopt such rules and regulations for the conduct of its business and affairs as shall be deemed advisable, provided, however, that the Board of Elders shall not have the power to act or fail to act, in a manner inconsistent with these Canon Law.
1. Governing the organization by establishing broad policies and objectives;
2. Selecting, appointing, supporting and reviewing the performance of the Secretary Chief Executive;
3. Ensuring the availability of adequate financial resources;
4. Approving annual budgets;
5. Accounting to the Elder Executive Board for the organization's performance;
6. Setting the salaries and compensation of corporation management in the case where it is a need for special members' duties.
NB: In general, all Local organizations and Board Members, at any level a volunteer job.
013 House of Bishops (Episcopal Polity Board all members of the clergy)
• A lay person with expertise can sit as a full right member of the House of Bishops
• Expertise has to be demonstrated and log in our Symposium Minutes and in the House of Bishops Minutes
13.0.1 The system of governance of the Local organization as a whole is through the House of Bishops. The House of Bishops shall consist of the Archbishop, Synod Presiding Bishops, and serving bishops who have been admitted to the House of Bishops in the IAOC Local organization. A bishop may resign membership of the House in order to retire from the exercise of their office within the Local organization, although a bishop will retain the privileges of the Episcopal Order. Retired bishops may be members of the House of Bishops as Ward. If the members each have the full capacity of 9 members. the Ward Bishop can serve without authority in the Synod. but as an adviser to the government members. Ward can be any clergy member not only Bishops.
13.0.1 Although a bishop is usually appointed to a titular, appointment to the Episcopal Bishop is conferred to the person concerned and does not automatically carry with it the implication of hierarchical responsibility for clergy and communities. Appointment of a bishop to an office which has specific responsibilities for Local organization governance is recognized through an additional appointment to a position as Administrator of an Ordinate, Head of a Local organization, Mission or similar.
13.0.2 Congregation clergy who are not under the episcopal membership to be appointed Bishop a candidate needs to receive 70% of the local organization vote of their members.
13.0.3 Members and clergy are free to express their personal views on all matters but have a responsibility to preserve the reputation and integrity of the Local organization. Care must be taken to avoid misunderstanding. Where such discussions or dialogue occur, the following statement should be prominent: ‘Opinions expressed are those of the writer and not necessarily the official view of the Local organization’, or a similar statement.
13.0.4 Due to geographical distance, the House of Bishops meets mainly through electronic communications for the conduct of routine business, although it may also meet in person. The House of Bishops undertakes all routine administration of matters affecting the overall Local organization as a whole as well as specific duties and commissions that arise from time to time.
13.0.5 All matters for decision by the House of Bishops will be resolved by means of a unanimous decision where possible. A simple majority shall not, except in unusual circumstances, by itself be considered sufficient means of resolving an issue since the House of Bishops shall be charged with the responsibility to reflect all aspects of opinion within the Local organization. Where possible, the House of Bishops shall seek compromise and act not only from personal conviction but with the overall good of the Local organization in mind.
13.0.6 All candidates for ordination shall have received the approval of the House of Bishops, and all candidates for consecration to the Bishopric shall have received the unanimous support of the House of Bishops before being admitted.
13.0.7 The Archbishop is the overall Head of the IAOC Unitarian Local organization, but in practice devolves this to the House of Bishops. Each of the bishops within the House of Bishops is equal but the Archbishop shall have a casting vote where consensus has not been reached. In using a casting vote, the Archbishop shall regard of the overall good of the Local organization rather than any individual.
13.0.8 In proceedings of the House of Bishops, silence shall normally be construed as assent. A member of the House who dissents or wishes to ask for time to reflect on or discuss an issue further must make these feelings known to fellow members of the House at the earliest opportunity and bears the responsibility for doing so him or herself. For practical purposes, and because the business before the House can at times be considered in volume, it is assumed that members of the House will respond to proposals before the House within twenty-four hours of their receipt.
13.0.9 Correspondence that is sent to the House of Bishops and will be available to all House members. Except in cases where pastoral confidentiality has been specifically requested and granted in advance, correspondents and clergy must not assume that their correspondence with the Local organization will not be shared with the House of Bishops. The House of Bishops undertakes, however, that any matters of sensitivity will not be discussed outside the House except with the express permission of both of the House as a whole, and wherever possible that of the correspondent concerned.
13.0.10 The Local organization has several codes of conduct, including codes of conduct adopted from outside groups or societies, covering various activities. Clergy must at all times exercise the highest moral and 'professional' integrity. The codes of conduct must be complied with at all times. Clergy are encouraged to strive for 'best practice' as they see it in their serving. Codes of conduct are reviewed by the House of Bishops from time to time.
13.0.11 Any clergy member may approach the House of Bishops and request a hearing of a matter of concern or seek advice and spiritual guidance. It is always best for a clergyperson to seek advice earlier rather than later in a situation that may have implications for present or future difficulty or conflict. The clergy should, however, have consulted and discussed the matter with their bishop at a local organization level first. The House of Bishops will only engage when an agreement could not be reached at the more local levels. The House will not overrule nor undermine decisions made in a local organization except where the overall common good of the whole Local organization might be affected.
13.0.12 Proceedings of the House of Bishops regarding the discipline of the clergy shall normally be public. Any member of the clergy who is the subject of proceedings before the House of Bishops shall have the right to be accompanied by a solicitor or other person trained in Canon Law, or a friend. The House of Bishops shall have the right to delegate any part of their representation during the proceedings to a solicitor advocate or other person trained in Canon Law. All legal representation shall be at the expense of the party who employs it.
13.0.13 In the event that the behaviour of any member of clergy gives rise to concern, any person, whether lay or ordained, shall have the right to report the matter to the House of Bishops using the contact information on the Local organization's website. It shall be the responsibility of the House of Bishops to provide pastoral care for those involved with the intention that the matters that have given rise to concern be investigated and dealt with as necessary. If despite this, the behaviour concerned continues, the House of Bishops may issue an official Notice dissociating itself from the behaviour concerned and suspending the faculties of the clergyperson in question.
13.0.14 In the event that a member of the clergy is accused of misconduct, the complaint must be made to the House of Bishops with full details of the matters complained of, and this must be signed by the person or persons concerned. Anonymous accusations will not be accepted.
126.96.36.199. A formal hearing before the House of Bishops shall be arranged in person and the clergyperson concerned shall be requested to attend the hearing together with his or her representatives. A notice period of twenty-eight days will normally be given. Clergy who are unable or unwilling to attend the hearing may submit evidence in writing for the consideration of the House.
188.8.131.52. The House will appoint a Prosecutor to represent the complainant(s). The Prosecutor may be a solicitor or other person trained in advocacy. In order to ensure impartiality, he or she will not normally be a member of the Local organization.
184.108.40.206. The House will consider the evidence and representations made to it and will find the allegation Proven or Not Proven. For an allegation that is Proven, the House may impose sanctions including the admonishment of the clergyperson concerned, and the suspension or removal of his or her faculties.
13.0.15 An appeal against a ruling of the House of Bishops may be made to the Archbishop within twenty-eight days of the publication of the ruling, setting out the grounds for the appeal including the substantive evidence under which the ruling may be deemed unsafe. The Archbishop shall hear any appeal in person, giving a notice period of twenty-eight days for the hearing, and he or she may choose to be accompanied by an adviser not being a member of the House of Bishops. If the clergyperson is unable or unwilling to attend the hearing, he or she may submit evidence in writing for the consideration of the Archbishop. The Archbishop after due prayer and consideration has the right to endorse a decision of the House of Bishops, or request it is reconsidered by the House of Bishops.
13.0.16 A member of the clergy of the Local organization who resigns, seeking readmission shall make an application to the House of Bishops, giving a full account of his or her actions. The House of Bishops shall consider the matter and issue a ruling within fourteen days or receive the application for reinstatement. No member of the clergy of the Local organization may be readmitted after resigning for a second time.
13.0.17 All members and clergy of the Local organization are bound by these canons and applicable codes of conduct at all times they remain as members or clergy of this Local organization. In accepting the role of a clergyperson or a member, they accept both this obedience and the authority of the House of Bishops in administering the canons and, with the help of God in prayer, in rendering any form of judgment based upon them.
13.0.18 A member of the clergy who resigns the office shall not be illegible for readmission except in special circumstances and the member should apply to the House of Bishop, giving all account of actions involved. The House of Bishop has fourteen days to rule. After a second resignation no readmitting can be accepted.