Report of the

Study Committee:

Credentials & Multi-Staff Churches

The study committee on credentials and multi-staff churches bring the following legislation to Annual Conference:

Resolved, that the material in bold italics be adopted at Second Reading for inclusion in the Faith & Order, Article 510 General Rules of Elections and Resignations

510 1 Categories

(1) There are three categories of nominees for election to boards, and committees. They are ministers, elders, and laypersons.

(2) Pastoral Staff members are not eligible to serve in the categories of elders or laypersons.

Resolved, that the following material be adopted for First Reading:

1. For inclusion in the Faith and Order as 204-4 and 204-5:

204-4 Pastoral Staff

The pastoral staff of a Particular Church is composed of, and limited to, those individuals who are serving as a minister in the BFC. For an individual to serve as a minister in the BFC, he must be ordained by or have had his previous ordination recognized by the BFC or he must be under the care of the Ministerial Candidate Committee.

204-5 Church Staff

The church staff of a Particular Church is composed of individuals who are employed by that Particular Church. The church staff shall include the pastoral staff, but is not limited to the pastoral staff. Others included in the church staff would be secretaries, sexton, director of womens ministries, director of children and youth, choir director, etc. The title pastor, when it is used in association with a person that is occupying a position on a church staff is to be reserved for those who are members of the pastoral staff.

2. The following numerical changes, with their corresponding explanation in the Faith and Order:

204-1.1 - The minister and pastor are interchangeable terms.

204-1.2 - A minister or pastor in the Bible Fellowship Church must be holding or seeking credentials in the Bible Fellowship Church.

204-1.3 - The Office of Minister [presently in the F&O as 204-1.1]

204-1.4 - The Qualifications for the Ministry [presently in the F&O as 204-1.2]

3. To change 204-1.2 Educational Requirements:

Current 204-1.2 reads as follows (italics represent section to be changed)

(1) All men desiring to be ordained to the ministry of the BFC shall have been graduated from high school and have 3 years of theological training or its equivalent. A man may be an applicant or candidate during the period of his training, but the 3 years of theological study shall be completed before he becomes a probationer. Exceptions to this rule may be made for some mature men; however, in no case will a man be recommended for ordination examination before completing the equivalent of 3 years of theological training.

(2) Candidates for the ministry should be men of broad reading interests, giving evidence of understanding and practical wisdom.

Proposed First Reading changes in bold italics.

(1) All men desiring to be ordained to the ministry of the BFC shall have been graduated from college/university and are encouraged to pursue a seminary degree. The minimum requirement is 3 years of theological training or its approved equivalent. A man may be an applicant or candidate during the period of his training, but the 3 years of theological study shall be completed before he becomes a probationer. Exceptions to this rule may be made for some mature men; however, in no case will a man be recommended for ordination examination before completing the equivalent of 3 years of theological training.

(2) Candidates for the ministry should be men of broad reading interests, giving evidence of understanding and practical wisdom.

Study Committee: Credentials and Multi-Staff Churches: LeRoy S. Heller, Chairman; Jacob J. Susek, Jr., Secretary; Calvin T. Reed, L. James Roberts, Jr., Ralph M. Soper