Charity legislation and charity practice have created a situation where the local church needs to have its own constitution, which is a self-contained document, and describes the church, its activities and practices fully.
A clear constitution enables everyone in the church to understand how the church functions, how matters are brought forward for discussion, who may take decisions and how that process should work. As the church constitution is an open document it enables everyone to understand the arrangements, avoiding the potential problem of individuals being very familiar with church rules and regulations but not explaining them in a way that enables everybody to understand.
A constitution should also help new church members to understand the church, the activities it supports, its style and ethos, and how they can participate in the life of a church. The constitution should be a document that helps in this process, rather than being something they can only understand after they have been members for at least twenty years! Participating in church life should not require an individual to piece together snippets of information into some kind of organisational jigsaw.
A constitution does not make the church happen. It cannot create relationships and it cannot bring anybody to faith. However, it can express good practice in how we live together and help us understand the patterns that our church life takes. Our mission is more than the sum total of our paperwork. However, the church constitution is one aspect of that relationship between church members arising out of their faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, being worked out in everyday life.
If you would like a copy of the church’s constitution please request one via firstname.lastname@example.org