SEVENTY-EIGHTH ANNUAL CONFERENCE

Annual Conference Proceedings

1961


            The Seventy-eighth Annual Conference of the Bible Fellowship Church convened in Allentown Bethel Church, 526-30 N. Eighth St., Allentown, Pa.


            The Conference opened at 9:00 a.m., Monday, October 9, with the singing of "Holy, Holy, Holy" and prayer by P. T. Stengele.


            The Chairman of the Annual Conference, F. B. Hertzog, led in the responsive reading of Psalm 139, and reviewed the progress of the last year relating to the use of our time and talents in the service of the Lord.


            District Superintendent, C. E. Kirkwood, conducted a season of prayer and gave a Communion Meditation on Colossians 1:21, 22.


            The Communion service, in which the entire Conference participated, was a time of real fellowship and rejoicing in the Lord.


REPORT OF ANNUAL CONFERENCE PROGRAM COMMITTEE


Organist for morning devotions — Robert W. Gehret

Song Leaders: Daniel K. Ziegler (Mon., Tues., Wed.)

Byron C. Cassel (Thur., Fri.)

 

MONDAY:                9:00 a.m.         Opening Address by the Chairman of the Annual Conference - F. B. Hertzog. (Address limited to 20 minutes)

 

Prayer Period and Communion Meditation conducted by C. E. Kirkwood, District Superintendent.

(Limited to 20 minutes)


                                                            Observance of the Lord's Supper.

 

TUESDAY:                9:00 a.m.         Devotions

                                                            Vocal Solo - Carl C. Cassel

                                                            Meditation - P. T. Stengele

 

WEDNESDAY:         9:00 a.m.         Devotions

Vocal Solo - LeRoy S. Heller

                                                            Meditation - John H. Riggall

 

THURSDAY:             9:00 a.m.         Devotions

                                                            Vocal Solo - Ken Masterman

Meditation - Russell T. Allen

 

                                    7:30 p.m.        ORDINATION SERVICE in charge of

                                                            C. E. Kirkwood, D.S.

Song Leader - LeRoy S. Heller

Organist - Clarence Kauffman

Worship service to include a musical selection by a Pastors' Chorus directed by William A. Heffner.

Speaker - F. B. Hertzog, D. S.

 

FRIDAY:                    9:00 a.m.         Devotions

                                                            Vocal Selection - Preachers Quartet

                                                            Meditation - Rev. S. A. Witmer, Ph. D.

Executive Director of the Accrediting Association of Bible Colleges

 

Note:The Committee recommends:

The morning devotional periods be limited to 30 minutes.

Committee:A. L. Seifert

Earl M. Hosler

David E. Thomann

 

Report was adopted.


            The Secretary, N. H. Wolf, appointed the following assistants: Assistant Secretary, Ernest B. Hartman; Recording Secretary, Robert W. Smock.

 

The following were enrolled as members of the Conference:


Ministers

            Ordained — Russell T. Allen, Paul E. Baer, E. W. Bean, Carl C. Cassel, Willard E. Cassel, John Dunn, T. D. Gehret, John E. Golla, Ernest B. Hartman, Jansen E. Hartman, W. W. Hartman, William A. Heffner, LeRoy S. Heller, Frank L. Herb, Jr., George E. Herb, F. B. Hertzog, Earl M. Hosler, W. B. Hottel, C. E. Kirkwood, Donald T. Kirkwood, Richard H. Kline, James G. Koch, R. C. Reichenbach, John H. Riggall, Donald B. Schaeffer, A. L. Seifert, Robert W. Smock, P. T. Stengele, David E. Thomann, N. H. Wolf, W. F. Heffner, E. E. Kublic, J. B. Layne, E. J. Rutman, A. G. Woodring.

            Probationers — James A. Beil, Bert N. Brosius, Harvey J. Fritz, Jr., Reynold D. Gardner, Elwood L. Heiser, Robert F. Johnson, Daniel G. Ziegler.


Delegates

Allentown District

 

Allentown (Bethel), Clarence L. Kauffman, R. Paul Schaeffer

Reading, Robert Breitegam

Sunbury, A. F. Smith

            Shamokin, T. Lamarn Manney

            York, David Fahs

Mount Carmel, Roy E. Williams

            Hatfield, Daniel K. Ziegler

            Harrisburg, David F. Gardner

            Lancaster, Horace A. Kauffman

            Royersford, William R. Hunsberger

            Spring City, R. S. Weidner

            Graterford and Harleysville, S. A. Hackman

            Nazareth and Catasauqua, A. W. Deppe

            Lebanon, Charles W. Weaber

            Lehighton, Edwin P. Yerger

            Walnutport, Burton Deppe

            Stroudsburg, George R. Fish


Bethlehem District

Bethlehem, A. Franklin Campbell

Philadelphia (Salem), Byron C. Cassel

Quakertown, George W. Krigor

Emmaus, Paul I. Wentz, Sr.

Easton, Allen F. La Rose

Fleetwood, Clayton E. Weber

Coopersburg, Harold A. Mann

Wallingford, Rufus Spedden

Allentown (Salem), Allan C. Palmer

Scranton, Carl H. Kellerman

Terre Hill, Robert W. Gehret

Philadelphia (Calvary), Leon H. Naudasher

Philadelphia (Emmanuel), Edward J. Dietzman

Blandon, John I. Mengel

Staten Island, N.Y., Ralph D. Cole

Zionsville, John L. Shelly


            Resolved, That we accept the excuses of the pastor and delegates submitted, and when they arrive they shall be seated in the Conference Bar and further that alternate delegates be seated in the Conference Bar.


            Resolved, That the first seven pews to the front and right of the Chair constitute the Conference Bar.


            Resolved, That no one be permitted to leave the Conference Bar without permission of the Chair, except A. L. Seifert, Clarence L. Kauffman and R. Paul Schaeffer.


            The Committee appointed at the Annual Conference of 1960 presented a proposed agenda for this Annual Conference.


            Resolved, That the Committee on Examination of Travelling Elders be composed of the two District Superintendents and one member appointed by the chairman.

He appointed: W. B. Hottel.


COMMITTEES


            COMMITTEE ON COMMUNICATIONS: David E. Thomann, Frank L. Herb, Jr., Richard H. Kline.

            COMMITTEE ON FINANCE: Paul I. Wentz, Byron C. Cassel, S. A. Hackman, Roy E. Williams.

            COMMITTEE ON EXAMINATION OF LOCAL CONFERENCE RECORDS: E. W. Bean, W. B. Hottel, Russell T. Allen, Donald B. Schaeffer, Harvey J. Fritz, Richard H. Kline, James A. Beil, Robert F. Johnson, Bert N. Brosius, George E. Herb, T. Lamarn Manney, David F. Gardner, Edwin P. Yerger, Burton Deppe, Charles W. Weaber, Leon Naudasher, Allen F. LaRose, Carl H. Kellerman, David H. Fahs, George R. Fish, John I. Mengel, John L. Shelly, A. W. Deppe, Allen C. Palmer, Ralph D. Cole, Reynold D. Gardner.

            COMMITTEE ON EXAMINATION OF TRAVELING ELDERS: F. B. Hertzog, C. E. Kirkwood and W. B. Hottel.

            COMMITTEE ON STATISTICS: Appointed at Adjourned Session. Willard E. Cassel, John E. Golla, Donald T. Kirkwood, LeRoy S. Heller, John Dunn.

            COMMITTEE ON EXAMINATION OF APPLICANTS FOR ANNUAL CONFERENCE LICENSE: Jansen E. Hartman, William A. Heffner, W. B. Hottel, John H. Riggall, W. W. Hartman.

            COMMITTEE ON EXAMINATION OF CANDIDATES FOR ORDINATION: C. E. Kirkwood, Jansen E. Hartman, David E. Thomann, R. C. Reichenbach, A. L. Seifert.

            COMMITTEE ON RESOLUTIONS: John H. Riggall, Earl M. Hosler, Elwood L. Heiser, Carl C. Cassel.

            COMMITTEE ON AUDITING: T. D. Gehret, Daniel K. Ziegler, James G. Koch, Rufus Spedden, R. S. Weidner, Clayton E. Weber, Robert W. Gehret, Clarence L. Kauffman, R. Paul Schaeffer, Edward J. Dietzman, Harold A. Mann, Robert Breitegam, William R. Hunsberger, George W. Krigor, Horace A. Kauffman, A. F. Smith, A. Franklin Campbell.

            COMMITTEE ON EXAMINATION OF ANNUAL CONFERENCE RECORDS: Frank L. Herb, Jr., Harvey J. Fritz, Jr.

REPORTER: R. C. Reichenbach.

TIME KEEPER: Daniel G. Ziegler.


REPORT OF DISCIPLINE EXAMINATION


            This is to certify that on Wednesday, September 13, 1961, M. Leslie Campbell was examined on the Discipline, Articles of Faith and Supplemental Rules, of the Bible Fellowship Church and received a grade of 81.

            F. B. Hertzog, D. S.

Examiner

 

Report was adopted.


            Resolved, That M. Leslie Campbell be referred to the Committee on Examination of Applicants for Annual Conference License.


            The following Church Extension ministers were present during the Conference: M. Leslie Campbell, Alva C. Cassel, Raymond R. Dotts, Robert J. Entler, Ronald C. Mahurin, Robert E. McIntyre, Leon K. Overpeck, Richard R. Ruth, Norman R. Weiss.

 

Resolved, That we suspend the rules and adjourn to meet at 3:30 p.m.

 

Adjourned at 11:10 a.m. with prayer by John H. Riggall.


Second Meeting

Monday Afternoon, October 9, 1961

            The meeting was opened at 3:30 p.m. with the singing of "Guide Me O Thou Great Jehovah" and Harvey J. Fritz, Jr., led in prayer.


            The roll was called and the minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved.

 

The following reports were read and adopted:


            Report of the Chairman of the General Camp Meeting Committee: (See Reports)

Report of the Youth Fellowship General Committee: (See Reports)

            Resolved, That we have three (3) Retreats in September 1962. The first retreat on August 31-September 2 for post-High School and College age young people; the second on September 7-9 for Senior High School age young people; the third on September 14-16 for Junior High School age young people. Each of these would be held at Victory Valley Camp; each would begin with Friday evening meal and close with Sunday noon meal.

Report of the Committee on Publication and Printing: (See Reports)

Report of the Laymen's Benevolent Society: (See Reports)

Report of the Conference Treasurer: (See Reports)

Report of the Sunday School Promotion Committee: (See Reports)

Report of the Victory Valley Committee: (See Reports)

Report of the Committee over District Superintendents:

            We wish to report that to the best of our knowledge and belief, the two District Superintendents have fulfilled their duties well and have served in a Spirit-filled and godly manner.

W. W. Hartman,

            Frank L. Herb, Jr.

            P. T. Stengele,

                        Committee


            Resolved, That we suspend the rules and adjourn to meet this evening at 6:30 o'clock.

 

Adjourned, 4:45 p.m. with prayer by Frank L. Herb, Jr.


Third Meeting

Monday Evening, October 9, 1961

            The meeting was opened at 6:30 p.m. with the singing of "Blessed Assurance" and A. G. Woodring led in prayer.


            The roll was called and the minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved.

 

The following reports were read and adopted:

Report of the Annual Ministerial Convention: (See Reports)

            Report of the Bethlehem District Superintendent, C. E. Kirkwood: (See Reports)

            Report of the Allentown District Superintendent, F. B. Hertzog: (See Reports)

            Report of the Church Extension Director, William A. Heffner: (See Reports)

            Report of the President of Berean Bible School, Jansen E. Hartman: (See Reports)

Report of the Board of Directors: (See Reports)

Report of the Board of Church Extension: (See Reports)

Report of the Board of Education: (See Reports)

Report of the Board of Foreign Missions: (See Reports)


            Resolved, That Austin G. Shelly be referred to the Committee on Examination of Candidates for Ordination.

 

Report of the Board of Directors of the Home: (See Reports)

            The Board announces that brochures of the Nazareth Home have been printed and are available for distribution.


            Whereas, We have learned from the Board of Directors that Pastor Paul T. Stengele of Reading, Pa., a minister in the Bible Fellowship Church for a period of forty-three years, has submitted a letter to the Board requesting permission to retire from the active ministry as of this Annual Conference, therefore,

Resolved, That his request be granted.

 

Adjourned 8:20 p.m. with prayer by Willard E. Cassel.


Fourth Meeting

Tuesday Morning, October 10, 1961

            The meeting was opened at 9:00 a.m. with the singing of "Praise Ye the Triune God" and W. W. Hartman led in prayer.


            A stirring address was given by P. T. Stengele using Ephesians 2:11-13: Acts 17:27 and Psalm 139:1-6. He emphasized the fact that "the sense of God's presence is the flow of our entire Christian ministry."


            The roll was called and the minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved.

 

Conference recessed at 9:45 a.m.

 

Business was resumed at 11:00 a.m.

 

The following reports were read and adopted:

Report of the Committee on Examination of Traveling Elders:

            We have examined all the Pastors through their respective delegates and have found our ministering brethren to be true men of God who are preaching the Word, growing spiritually themselves, living consistent Christian lives and seeking to meet the needs of their people.

We therefore recommend them for future service among us.

            C. E. Kirkwood

            F. B. Hertzog

            W. B. Hottel,

                        Committee

 

Report of the Committee on Examination of Local Conference Records:

            We have examined all Local Conference Records and have found them to be correct except for a few omissions and minor errors which were corrected by the Pastors concerned.

The following petitions were found:

 

Petition #1

            Lebanon, Pennsylvania: Whereas the Internal Revenue Service requests full and proper receipts for Church giving,

            Resolved, that the congregation of Bethany Bible Fellowship Church petition the Annual Conference to prepare and print receipt forms that will be available for all the churches.

 

Petition #2

            Nazareth and Catasauqua: Whereas it is believed to be feasible, desirable, and for the best interest of both churches to break up the circuit consisting of the Bible Fellowship Churches located at Nazareth and Catasauqua, Pennsylvania, therefore,

            Resolved that we petition the Annual Conference convening at Allentown, Pa., on October 9, 1961, to assign to the Nazareth and Catasauqua Congregations their own Pastors as soon as possible.

 

Petition # 3

            Allentown (Bethel): Resolved, that we petition the Annual Conference of the Bible Fellowship Church convening at Bethel Church in Allentown on October 9, 1961 to abolish the regulation stating that no Pastor shall serve any church longer than nine consecutive years.


            Whereas, We have noted a difference in practice in the completion of the Summary Sheet to the Local Conference Minutes, therefore,

            Resolved, That the names listed on the Summary be the names of the Officers who have reported to the Local Conference during the year.


            Attention is called to the 1959 Year Book P. 25 relative to Congregational Meetings for election of Church Officers:

            "Resolved, That the minutes of the Congregational Meeting at which the Church Officers are elected be included with the Local Conference Minutes."

            E. W. Bean                             Burton Deppe

            W. B. Hottel                           Charles W. Weaber

            Russell T. Allen                      Leon Naudasher

            Donald B. Schaeffer               Allen F. LaRose

            Harvey J. Fritz                        Carl H. Kellerman

            Richard H. Kline                    David W. Fahs

            James A. Bell                         George R. Fish

            Robert F. Johnson                   John I. Mengel

            Bert N. Brosius                       John L. Shelly

            George E. Herb                       A. W. Deppe

            T. Lamarn Manney                 Allan C. Palmer

            David F. Gardner                    Ralph D. Cole

            Edwin P. Yerger                     Reynold G. Gardner

                        Committee.


            Resolved, That the petition of the Nazareth and Catasauqua Bible Fellowship Churches be referred to the Stationing, Boundary and Appropriating Committee.

 

Report of the Committee on Finance: (See Reports)


            Resolved, That we determine who are the preachers willing to minister the coming year according to the direction of the Conference and our Discipline.

            The following ministering brethren responded "yea" to the roll call: Russell T. Allen, E. W. Bean, Carl C. Cassel, Willard E. Cassel. John Dunn, T. D. Gehret, John E. Golla, Ernest B. Hartman, Jansen E. Hartman, W. W. Hartman, William A. Heffner, LeRoy S. Heller, Frank L. Herb, Jr., George E. Herb, F. B. Hertzog, Earl M. Hosler, W. B. Hottel, C. E. Kirkwood, Donald T. Kirkwood, Richard H. Kline, James G. Koch, R. C. Reichenbach, John H. Riggall, Donald B. Schaeffer, A. L. Seifert, Robert W. Smock, David E. Thomann, N. H. Wolf, James A. Beil, Bert N. Brosius, Harvey J. Fritz, Jr., Reynold D. Gardner, Elwood L. Heiser, Robert F. Johnson, Daniel G. Ziegler.


            Adjourned with prayer by E. W. Bean.


Fifth Meeting

Tuesday Afternoon, October 10, 1961

            The meeting was opened with the singing of "Amazing Grace" and James G. Koch led in prayer. Carl C. Cassel rendered, "Teach Me Thy Way" as a solo.


            The minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved.


            Rev. Ronald Hoyle, missionary to France, Rev. David Watkins of Ipswich, Mass., and Rev. LeRoy Bickel of Fitchburg, Mass., were invited by the Chairman to briefly address the conference.

 

The following reports were read and adopted:

Report of the Committee on Church Publication: (See Reports)

Report of the Committee to Study Pastoral Support:

            The committee to study pastoral support, insurance and the establishing of the District Superintendent's salary met on several occasions throughout the conference year.

            The following recommendations are submitted for your prayerful consideration:

            1. A pamphlet shall be prepared and printed by the Stationing, Boundary and Appropriating Committee covering pastoral support, to be freely distributed throughout our Churches and Missions.

            2. A letter shall be sent to our Churches receiving appropriations. The form of the letter shall stress the following:

                        A. The importance of tithing.

B. The fact that it is Scriptural for a Church to become self-supporting as well as self-governing.

C. The thought that Church Extension offerings should be used primarily for Church Extension work, not for the support of long established churches.

                                    a. The reason for opening new churches.

                                    b. The cost of opening new churches.

                        D. The fact that Conference has made appropriations to your church for the past                          years.

E. A definite recommendation as to the increase in Steward offerings to be made over the previous year, using October 1 to September 30 as a basis for comparison so that ultimately, appropriations may be discontinued.

                        F. The proper channeling of funds.

            3. The Stationing, Boundary and Appropriating Committee of Annual Conference shall elect a sub-committee of five laymen from the Stationing, Boundary and Appropriating Committee plus the two District Superintendents to carry out instructions of Annual Conference with regard to the financial support of our pastors.


            4. Each church shall establish its own minimum support that it will pay its pastor. This action shall be by the Official Board annually at its first meeting after annual conference. This meeting should be held no later than November 1. Report of this action by the Official Board shall be made to the local congregation for approval with the first Delegate presiding at a meeting held not later than November 15.

            F. B. Hertzog              Daniel K. Ziegler

            C. E. Kirkwood          Byron C. Cassel

            R. W. Gehret              Clarence L. Kauffman,

            Roy E. Williams

                        Committee.


            Resolved That we adopt this report and also approve the recommendations.

 

Report of the Committee to Study District Superintendent Support:

            Complying with the action of Annual Conference, the committee, minus the two District Superintendents discussed the amount of and method of obtaining the District Superintendent(s) salary.

We recommend the following to Annual Conference:

            1. The District Superintendent's salary be set at $9,000 for the conference year 1961-62. He shall continue to pay the cost of his own utilities and travel expenses in connection with the work in his own district.

            2. Each Church in our Annual Conference shall remit on November 1, February 1, May 1, and August 1, a minimum sum equal to one dollar per member (membership as reported at Annual Conference 1961) to the secretary of the Board of Directors to be placed in a salary fund for the District Superintendent. The conference treasurer shall send to each District Superintendent on the first of each month, starting November 1, 1961, a salary check of $750. Should there be at any time a surplus in the District Superintendent Salary Fund, it shall be used in connection with the parsonages of the District Superintendents at the discretion of the Board of Directors.

            R. W. Gehret                          Daniel K. Ziegler

            Clarence L. Kauffman            Byron C. Cassel

            Roy E. Williams

                        Committee


            Resolved, That this report be tabled.

 

Resolved, That we suspend the Rules and adjourn to meet at 6:30 p.m.

 

Adjourned 5:00 p.m. with prayer by Robert Breitegam.


Sixth Meeting

Tuesday Evening, October 10th, 1961

            The meeting was opened with the singing of "Lead On O King Eternal." Donald B. Schaeffer led in prayer.


            The roll was called and the minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved.


REPORT OF THE GOVERNMENT COMMITTEE

(Second Reading)


WE RECOMMEND THE FOLLOWING:

            Duty #1 under the District Superintendents shall read as follows: The District Superintendents shall visit each appointment quarterly. Two of these visits shall be for complete Sundays. He shall be Chairman of the two Local Conferences.


            WHEREAS, there will be less visits of the District Superintendents with less opportunity to receive offerings for their support, therefore,

            WE RECOMMEND that the District Superintendents be salaried.


            WE RECOMMEND the following changes in our Standing Rules so that they will conform to the above changes in our Church Government:

            Supplemental Standing Rules. Local Conference, Section I p. 1 shall read as follows: Each Congregation shall hold at least two Local Conferences each Conference year.

            Supplemental Standing Rules, Local Conference, Section III #3, p. 1 shall read as follows: The election of all Church Officers shall be held shortly before the Second Local Conference at congregational meeting(s) which has been announced at three services, and their term of office shall begin immediately after said Local Conference.

            Supplemental standing Rules, Local Conference, Section III #4 p. 1 shall read as follows: The following Delegates shall be elected at the time of the election of all Church Officers. They shall serve in the order listed.

            Resolved, That the above section from the report of the Government Committee be tabled.


            WE RECOMMEND the following addition to Supplemental Standing Rules, Local Conference, Section III. p. 1. The following to be #4; present #4 to be #5:

            4. The following shall be the procedure in case of death, resignation or removal of an Officer.

a. The Official Board shall review and act upon the resignation or removal of any Local Conference Officer.

b. The Official Board shall determine the time of a congregational election to fill the unexpired term of the Local Conference Officer due to death, resignation or removal.


            We recommend the formation of a Credentials Committee as a substitute for the following:

                        a. Committee to Examine Traveling Elders.

                        b. Committee to Examine Applicants for Annual Conference License.

                        c. Committee to Examine Candidates for Ordination.

d. Committee to Examine District Superintendents, Local Preachers, Evangelists and Missionaries.

e. Committee Over the District Superintendents. (Please note that the present Committee Over the District Superintendents is composed of three members — this would be the three members of the Credentials Committee exclusive of the District Superintendents.)

                        f. Yeas and Nays Roll Call.



            This Committee shall be a standing committee that shall function throughout the year. (The Committee for Examination of Candidates for the Ministry would have jurisdiction over the Candidate until he is ready for ordination. The Credentials Committee would have the jurisdiction over all men who are ordained by the Bible Fellowship Church.)


CREDENTIALS COMMITTEE

            Election — The Credentials Committee shall be composed of the District Superintendents and three ordained ministers elected annually by ballot by the Annual Conference.

Duties

            1. The Credentials Committee shall examine all candidates for ordination. This examination shall take place at least one month prior to Annual Conference.

            2. It shall recommend candidates for ordination to the Annual Conference. It shall recommend the place and time for the ordination service.

            3. It shall have the oversight of all men who hold credentials with the Annual Conference.

            4. It shall receive annually a report from the District Superintendents relative to the pastors on their Districts.

            5. It shall annually send to all ministers a Faith and Order Questionnaire containing the following:

Faith and Order Questionnaire


            a. Are you willing to subscribe to the Articles of Faith of the Bible Fellowship Church? Yes or No

            b. If you are unwilling to subscribe to the Articles of Faith of the Bible Fellowship Church, state specifically your reason(s).

            c. Will you endeavor to follow the Rules of Order of the Bible Fellowship Church? Yes or No

            d. Are you willing to serve a church(es) as stationed by the Annual Conference through Pulpit Supply? Yes or No

            e. This questionnaire is to be signed and returned to the Credentials Committee by September 1.


                                                                                                    (SEAL)


            6. It shall compile the Availability List for Pulpit Supply on the basis of the District Superintendents' Reports and the Faith and Order Questionnaire.

            7. It shall deal with charges brought against any minister or cases for suspension presented by the District Superintendents.

            a. It shall request the accused individual to be present during the hearing of the case.

            b. It shall have the power to suspend.

            c. Any individual suspended shall have the right of appeal to the Annual Conference.

            8. It shall receive charges brought against any minister which are presented in writing and properly signed by the party or parties bringing the charges.

9. It shall submit a report to the Annual Conference.


            The Supplemental Standing Rules, Pulpit Supply, Local Conference Action, #4 (last sentence) shall be changed to read — "It shall be furnished by the Credentials Committee."

            Willard E. Cassel        Harold A. Mann

            R. C. Reichenbach      James G. Koch

            William A. Heffner    Rufus Spedden

            Carl C. Cassel             George E. Herb

            A. L. Wentz                Donald T. Kirkwood

                        Committee

            Report was adopted.


REPORT OF COMMITTEE TO STUDY ARTICLES OF FAITH

(Second Reading)


Article

FREE AGENCY


            In his original creation man was endowed with freedom to will1 and to do good or evil. But by the fall of Adam man forfeited his freedom of the Will.


            Man has not lost his free moral agency in that he retains the freedom to act in accordance with his fallen sinful nature.2


            Apart from God's infinite grace man cannot will or do anything necessary to his salvation.3 God causes man to will and to do His Will.4


I Ephesians 2:1-3 — 2 Romans 3:10-12 — 3Romans 9:16 — 4James 1:18.


Article

THE ETERNAL STATE


            There are two final destinies for man, heaven for the righteous and penitent, and hell for the unrighteous and impenitent.1 At the great white throne judgment, all the enemies of God will be consigned to the place of eternal conscious punishment from which there is no escape.2 The new heavens and the new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness shall be created3 as the final state in which the righteous shall dwell forever in the presence of God.4


1Matthew 25:46 — 2Revelation 20:11-15 — 3II Peter 3:10-13 — 4Revelation 21:3.


Article

ORDINANCES


            BAPTISM — Water baptism,1 the immersion of the believer, is a visible testimony to the work of regeneration2 and a mark of identification and union with Christ.3 It has no saving or cleansing power, but is the answer of a good conscience before God, hence, should only be administered to those who have, by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, realized the forgiveness of sins and have the assurance of acceptance with God.


1Acts 8:36 — 2Acts 2:41 — 3Matthew 28:19,20; Romans 6:3,4; Colossians 2:11,12.


            THE LORD'S SUPPER — The Lord's Supper is an ordinance of the New Testament,1 wherein, by giving and receiving bread and wine according to the appointment of Jesus Christ, His death is proclaimed.2 They that worthily partake in remembrance of Him, feed upon Him to their spiritual nourishment and growth in grace,3 have their union and communion with Him confirmed, testify and renew their thankfulness and commitment to God4 and their mutual love and fellowship each with the other as members of the same mystical body.5


            The Scriptures direct that each one examine himself and so let him eat of that bread and drink of that cup "until He comes."6


1Luke 22:19,20 — 2I Corinthians 11:26 — 3John 6:55,56 — 4I Corinthians 10:21 — 5I Corinthians 10:17 — 6I Corinthians 11:26.


Article

DIVINE HEALING


            It is the believer's privilege to seek the will of the Lord in matters of physical healing. This healing whether by natural, medical or supernatural means must come from the Omnipotent God who created the human body. The believer may implore the Lord for physical restoration according to the Scriptures,1 and if the healing is for the highest glory of God, His power will be displayed.2


1James 5:14-16 — 2John 11:4.


Article

ELECTION


            Election is a free act of the sovereign God in which from eternity,1 and for reasons known only to Himself2 and apart from any goodness in man He graciously chose from among the fallen mankind a people unto salvation,3 that they might be conformed to Christ's image.4 Those so chosen He redeemed,5 by His Son and seals by His Spirit.6


1Ephesians 1:4,11 — 2Matthew 11:27 (ASV) — 3II Timothy 1:9 — 4Ephesians 4:13 — 5II Thessalonians 2:13 — 6Ephesians 1:13.


Article

PERSEVERANCE OF THE SAINTS


            Salvation is the work of God from its commencement to its consummation.1 Those regenerated by the Word of God through the work of the Holy Spirit become partakers of the divine nature.2 They are preserved by the power of God,3 so that they shall never totally or finally fall away,4 but shall persevere unto the end.5


1 Romans 8:29,30 — 2 II Peter 1:4 — 3Philippians 1:6; I Peter 1:5 — 4John 10:27-29; I Corinthians 1:8; I John 2:19 — 5II Thessalonians 3:3,4.


Article

THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST


            The Second Coming of Jesus Christ is the personal, visible, bodily return of our Lord to this earth,1 to conform believers to His image and to establish the millennial kingdom. In connection with Christ's return there will be the resurrection of the righteous dead,2 the rapture of the saints,3 the salvation of Israel,4 the great tribulations5 and the inauguration of the millennial reign.6 Following the millennium there will be the resurrection and judgment of the unrighteous. The righteous will be eternally glorified with Him, the unrighteous will be eternally punished.


            It is the believer's source of encouragement and comfort, inspiring him to active service for Christ, and is a motive for purification and holy living.7


1John 14:2,3; Acts 1:11 — 2I John 3:2; I Corinthians 15:51,52 — 3I Thessalonians 4:13-18 — ' 4Romans 11:25b,26a — 5Matthew 24:21— 6Revelation 20:6 — 7John 3:3.

            C. E. Kirkwood                      Jansen E. Hartman

            Daniel G. Ziegler                    P. T. Stengele

            F. B. Hertzog                          Robert W. Smock

            Donald T. Kirkwood

                        Committee.

 

Report was adopted.


            Resolved, That the Government Committee produce an inexpensively printed pocket-size booklet containing our Articles of Faith and By-Laws as pertain to duties of members and the financial and electoral structure of the Church. This booklet shall be produced as a self-liquidating project.

 

Adjourned 9:00 p.m. with prayer by James A. Beil.


Seventh Meeting

Wednesday Morning, October 11, 1961

            The meeting was opened with singing of "Spirit of God Descend Upon My Heart" and Elwood L. Heiser led in prayer.


            During the devotion period, John H. Riggall chose as his theme, "The Compassion of Jesus as Found in the Gospel of John."

 

LeRoy S. Heller sang a solo entitled "In Tenderness He Sought Me."


            The roll was called and the minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved.


            Resolved, That T. D. Gehret be excused tomorrow to officiate at a funeral.


            Resolved, That we suspend the rules and recess to the call of the Chair.


            Business was resumed at 2:10 p.m. with the singing of "Blessed Assurance."


            Report of the Stationing, Boundary and Appropriating Committee: (See Reports)

Report was adopted.


            Alva C. Cassel and Norman R. Weiss were invited to sit in the Conference Bar.


            Russell Baker, missionary to Africa, and Austin G. Shelly, missionary to Venezuela, spoke briefly of the Lord's blessing upon them and their labors.


REPORT OF THE MINISTERIAL CANDIDATE COMMITTEE

(Second Reading)


            The Ministerial Candidate Committee met six times during the year. The problem of enlisting and choosing men for the ministries of the Bible Fellowship Church was discussed in the light of the formation of this committee, its objectives and its duties. This committee did not examine any candidates this year.

            This committee makes the following recommendations to the Annual Conference:

            1. The OBJECTIVE of the Ministerial Candidate Committee shall be: To provide the Bible Fellowship Church with a ministry that is called of God, true to the Word, filled with the Holy Spirit, dedicated wholeheartedly to Jesus Christ and thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

            2. The DUTIES of the Ministerial Candidate Committee shall be as follows:

(1) To receive applications from all those who offer themselves for service in the Bible Fellowship Church.

                        (2) To take under care the candidates and probationers while in training.

(3) To examine those who offer themselves for service in our Church determining as far as possible the sincerity and genuineness of their call to the ministry.

(4) To ascertain as far as possible whether the candidates and probationers have the Scriptural qualifications of a minister of the Word of God.

(5) To safeguard the doctrinal purity of the Church by exercising vigilance when examining prospective ministers concerning their beliefs and practices endeavoring to approve only those who are committed without reservation to the authority of the Scriptures and the doctrines and practices of our Church as the system of doctrine taught in Scripture.

                        (6) To license probationers for the Annual Conference prior to ordination.

(7) To recommend qualified probationers to the Credentials Committee for ordination examination.

            3. The TERMS used to designate the classification of those under the care of this committee shall be applicant, candidate and probationer. An applicant is a man who offers himself to this committee for service in the Bible Fellowship Church. A candidate is a man whose application is accepted and who remains under the guidance of this committee. A probationer is a man who has been approved by this committee, has passed an examination on the Faith and Order of the Bible Fellowship Church, and is working under the jurisdiction of the Board of Church Extension or the Board of Foreign Missions.

            4. The PROCEDURE to be followed by an individual offering himself for service in the Bible Fellowship Church shall be as follows:

(1) The applicant would make known to the Chairman of the Ministerial Candidate Committee his desire to serve in the Bible Fellowship Church,

(2) The applicant will fill out and file with the committee an application received from the Chairman, which shall include the following: personal information; approval of his local conference; letters of recommendation from his pastor, a former employer, and a former instructor.

(3) The candidate will carry out a program of personal development and training developed in consultation with this committee.

(4) When this committee believes that he is prepared and when the candidate is ready to enter the work of the Bible Fellowship Church; upon approval of this committee, the candidate will be recommended to the Board of Church Extension or the Board of Foreign Missions. Part of this approval is passing the Examination on the Faith and Order of the Bible Fellowship Church.

(5) During the time of work with the Board of Church Extension or the Board of Foreign Missions, the probationer will be under the jurisdiction of this committee; and his work will be under the jurisdiction of the Board with whom he works.

(6) At the end of the probationary period, upon approval of this committee, the probationer will be recommended to the Credentials Committee and his probationary period will cease. To serve as a candidate and probationer does not guarantee being recommended for ordination examination.

            Donald T. Kirkwood, Chairman,        William A. Heffner,

            Carl C. Cassel, Secretary,                   P. T. Stengele,

            Jansen E. Hartman,

                        Committee.


            Report was adopted.

 

Report of the Committee to Study Camp Meetings:

            A Meeting of Bible Fellowship Pastors was held Monday afternoon at 1:00 o'clock, October 31, 1960 in the Calvary Bible Fellowship Church, Shamokin, Pa., to review the Agenda on Mizpah Grove Utilization, as submitted at the last Annual Conference. District Superintendent, F. B. Hertzog, served as Chairman and N. H. Wolf was secretary. The Chairman appointed 7 discussion groups. Recommendations were submitted for further study and were discussed at the Ministerial Convention on May 2nd at Victory Valley.

            The Ministerial Convention elected a committee to continue the study of the program and formulate a report for presentation to Annual Conference. This Committee authorized a questionnaire to be sent to all the pastors of our Conference. On the basis of the returns from this questionnaire, it is apparent that our Pastors favor the continuation of camp meetings, with certain improvements being considered essential.

            We recommend that Annual Conference elect a committee of 7 ministering brethren, including the District Superintendents, to study program, grounds and facilities for future use of Camp Meetings.

            Jansen E. Hartman, Chairman            C. E. Kirkwood          Earl M. Hosler,

            Robert W. Smock, Secretary              T. D. Gehret

            F. B. Hertzog                                      A. L. Seifert

                        Committee.


            Report was adopted.


            Resolved, That the name of the publication containing the doctrines and discipline of our Church shall be entitled, Faith and Order of the Bible Fellowship Church.


            Resolved, That the Committee to Study Forms of the Church shall formulate a statement on dedication of children.


            Resolved, That we suspend the rules and adjourn and meet at 6:30 p.m Adjourned 5:00 p.m. with prayer by A. Franklin Campbell.


Eighth Meeting

Wednesday Evening, October 11, 1981

            The meeting was opened at 6:30 p.m. with the singing of "Where His Footprints Go I Will Follow" and R. Paul Schaeffer led in prayer.


            The roll was called and the minutes of the last meeting were approved.


REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON FORMS


BAPTISM

(See Article on Ordinances)

(See Duties of Ordinances and Practices Committee)

            At the appointed time and place of the baptismal service, there shall be singing and prayer, after which the officiating minister may give a brief address.


QUESTIONS TO CANDIDATES


            1. Can you testify that through repentance towards God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ you have experienced the forgiveness of your sin and enjoy peace with God?

If so, answer, "yes."

            2. Are you willing to renounce the world, shun all the ways of sin, cleave unto the Lord, and serve Him only?

If so, answer, "yes."

            3. Are you willing to be taught from the Word of God and to yield obedience to all that God enjoins upon you?

If so, answer, "yes."


ACT OF BAPTISM


            The minister shall immerse the candidate one time backward, saying: (Name) upon the confession of your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour, I baptize you in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.


MARRIAGE

(See Articles on Marriage and Divorce)


            Prior to the ceremony, the Minister should arrange an interview with the couple and counsel them concerning the ideals of marriage.

            At the time appointed for the solemnization of matrimony, the persons to be married shall stand together, the man on the minister's left hand and the woman on the right hand.


THE CEREMONY

(Suggested Procedure)


            (An invocation, scripture, and/or a charge to the couple may appropriately be given here.)

            Dearly beloved: We are gathered together in the sight of God and in the presence of this company to join together this man and this woman in the bonds of Holy Matrimony. This honorable estate, instituted of God in the time of man's innocency, is a symbol of the mystical union of Christ and His Church which He purchased with His own blood at Calvary. As Christ's love for the Church is sacred, in like manner marriage is sacred and is not to be entered into inadvisedly, but reverently, discreetly, and in the fear of God. Be ye well assured that if any persons are joined together otherwise than God's Word allows, their marriage is not blessed of God. Into this holy estate these two persons come now to be joined.

 

Who gives this woman to be married to this man?

            (The one who presents the bride in marriage shall make appropriate reply such as "I do" or "Her mother and I" after which the minister shall say to him, "Take her right hand and place it in his right hand signifying that you surrender her to his care and keeping for life.")


TO THE GROOM:

            Do you take this woman whose hand you now hold, to be your true and wedded wife and do you solemnly promise before God and these witnesses to love, cherish, honor, and protect her, and her only, forsaking all others for her sake, as long as you both shall live? If so, answer, "I do."


TO THE BRIDE:

            Do you take this man who now holds your hand, to be your true and wedded husband, and do you solemnly promise before God and these witnesses to love, honor, cherish, obey and protect him; to forsake all others for his sake and to cleave unto him, and him only, so long as you both shall live? If so, answer, "I do."


            (The Minister shall then ask the Groom to repeat after him the following:)

            I, take thee, to be my wedded wife; to have and to hold, from this day forward; for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, till death do us part, and thereto I pledge my troth.


            (The Minister shall then ask the Bride to repeat after him the following:)

            I, take thee, to be my wedded husband; to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, till death do us part, and thereto I pledge my troth.


            You may now give and receive the marriage rings, as a pledge and in token of the vows between you made.

(Join your right hands.)

            Inasmuch as and have taken these sacred vows in the presence of God and this assembled group, now therefore by the authority conferred upon me by the Church of Jesus Christ and by the laws of the state of pronounce you husband and wife, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.


            In this new relationship let me remind you that hereafter you are one in interests, one in reputation, and above all, one in affection. These, therefore, whom God has joined together let not man put asunder.

 

Prayer may be offered, if desired.


            The Lord bless thee, and keep thee: the Lord make His face to shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: the Lord lift up His countenance upon thee, and give thee peace. Amen.


FUNERAL SERVICE


(THE SERVICE - Suggested Procedure)


            Beloved: We are gathered together in the name of Christ to pay our last respects in memory of . The comfort in this hour is found in the Holy Scriptures. Let us hear what they say.

            The scripture reading may be followed by prayer, hymns, poems, an appropriate message, words of comfort, and a closing prayer.

            As we depart, may I remind each of you that every man stands before God in a day of judgment. Blessed are they whose hearts are prepared to meet their God.

            We invite you to join with us for the service of committal at cemetery.


COMMITTAL

(as per discipline)


            (From "I am the resurrection etc. to their works do follow them.") Benediction.


DEDICATION OF CHURCHES

(See Article on The Church)


            District Superintendent: Beloved, it behooves us in this solemn hour, to appear before the Lord, the God of heaven and earth, the Source and Giver of all good, who has given us the desire and the ability to build this house, and it being now accomplished by His help, we therefore dedicate it to His service.

            Our Blessed Redeemer gives us the precious assurance that He will meet with His people where they assemble themselves.

            Thus encouraged and strengthened in faith, we have confidence that the Most High who inhabiteth eternity and dwelleth also in those who are born of His Spirit, will accept this house which we have built to His glory, at our hands, and regard it with good pleasure, to the salvation and benefit of those who may from time to time here assemble to magnify His holy Name.

            Having this confidence, we now designate this house as the Bible Fellowship Church, unto the Triune God. We dedicate this house to the singing of His praise, the offering of thanksgiving, prayer, reading, expounding and preaching of His Word, the administration of the Ordinances, and the observance of such other devotional services as are according to the rules adopted and practiced in public worship by the Bible Fellowship Church agreeable with His Word. Here may His name be magnified and His Church increase through the salvation of men.


            Pastor: Dearly Beloved God, our Heavenly Father, has prospered us and (enabled us by His grace to complete this house of worship. We are gathered here this day to dedicate this building to the honor and service of our Lord. Within His house of worship the Word of God will be truly preached, His ordinances faithfully administered, prayer and praise freely offered unto Him Who, above all, is worthy. We desire that this shall be His house, and the place of His presence. We are thankful unto Him and bless His name.


            People: The Lord is Good, His mercy is everlasting and His truth endureth to all generations.


            Pastor: To God, the Everlasting Father, in Whom we live and move and have our being, and from Whom cometh every good and perfect gift, by Whose mercy and grace we are saved.


            People: We do now with gratitude solemnly dedicate this church.


            Pastor: To the service of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour, Who loved us and gave himself for us, Who rose again and liveth forevermore, to Him Who is the way, the truth, and the life.


            People: We dedicate this house of worship.


            Pastor: To the ministry of the Holy Spirit, our Comforter and Guide, by Whom alone is wrought the renewal of heart, Who leadeth us to repentance, and enricheth us through His work.


            People: We dedicate this house of worship.



            Pastor: For the comfort of those who mourn, for strength to those who are weak, for instruction in the truths of the Christian faith, for the sanctification of the family and the promotion of Christian character, for the giving of hope to one and all.


            People: We dedicate this house of worship.


            Pastor: For the carrying out of the Great Commission to the end that the Gospel may be preached to the ends of the earth through its constituency.


            People: We dedicate this house of worship.


            District Superintendent: That this dedication may be confirmed by God, you consecrate yourselves, and all that you are and possess, without reservation or condition, to Him as His people, for His service, in accordance with His rightful claim through the covenant of grace of Jesus Christ our Lord?


            Pastor and People: We, the members and friends of Bible Fellowship Church, (City) , (State) , grateful to God for our Christian heritage, sensitive to the sacrifices of the early pioneers, do dedicate ourselves anew to the service of our fellow man. To this end we dedicate this church in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

            John Dunn                  Donald B. Schaeffer

            Earl M. Hosler            W. W. Hartman

            James A. Beil             Robert W. Smock

                        Committee

 

Report was adopted.


SEVENTY-EIGHTH ANNUAL CONFERENCE

REPORT OF COMMITTEE ON ARTICLES OF FAITH

(First Reading)


Article

THE LORD'S DAY


            The first day of the week has been recognized as the Lord's Day by the church from apostolic times.1 We believe, therefore, that it ought to be observed by all believers, voluntarily and in love, as a continuation of the sabbath principle,2 a day of remembrance of the resurrection of our Lord from the dead and a day of worship of God, rest from physical toil, service for the Master and fellowship of the saints. Christians ought to engage only in duties of necessity and mercy on the Lord's Day.

 

1. Mark 16:9, Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils. John 20:1, 19, The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre. . . . Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. Acts 20:7, And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight. I Corinthians 16:2, Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.

 

2. Genesis 2:2, 3, And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it; because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made. Mark 2:27, 28, And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath: Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath.


            The committee has studied the question of the relation of the Rapture to the Great Tribulation and recommends that the article, "The Second Coming of Christ", adopted at its first reading by the 1960 Annual Conference, stand as adopted.

            C. E. Kirkwood, Chairman                 Jansen E. Hartman

            Daniel G. Ziegler, Secretary               P. T. Stengele

            F. B. Hertzog                                      Robert W. Smock

Donald T. Kirkwood

                        Committee

 

Report was adopted.

 

The following report was adopted:

Report of the Committee on Examination of Applicants for Ordination:

            Whereas, The Committee has examined Austin G. Shelly, Bert N. Brosius, Reynold D. Gardner and Robert F. Johnson who have served their three year probationary period in the ministry within our Conference and have given evidence that they are called of God to the Christian ministry,

            Therefore, We recommend that they be ordained in the evening service, October 12, 1961.


            Whereas, Elwood L. Heiser has served acceptably as a probationer for the period of one year as directed by last Annual Conference, and,

            Whereas, The Committee believes that he has given evidence of his calling to the Christian ministry,

            Therefore, Resolved that we recognize his former ordination and a public announcement be made in the ordination service.

            C. E. Kirkwood          David E. Thomann

            Jansen E. Hartman      R. C. Reichenbach,

            A. L. Seifert

                        Committee


            Resolved, That we approve the recommendation of the Committee on Examination of Candidates for Ordination.


            Adjourned 9:30 p.m. with prayer by Donald T. Kirkwood.


Ninth Meeting

Thursday Morning, October 12, 1961

            The meeting was opened with the singing of "Awake My Soul, Stretch Every Nerve" and LeRoy S. Heller led in prayer.


            Russell T. Allen, speaker of the devotional period, gave a brief Bible Study on "The Believer's Hands — Cleansed, Calmed and Conquering".


            A vocal solo was rendered by Rev. Kenneth Masterman entitled, "It's in My Heart."


            The roll was called and the minutes of last evening's meeting were read and approved.


            James Bigley, missionary under assignment to Africa, and Harold D. Yarrington, chaplain of Connecticut Valley Hospital, Middletown, Conn., were given opportunity to speak. They expressed their appreciation of our fellowship and the goodness of the Lord during the year.

 

The following was adopted:

Report of the Committee to Examine Annual Conference Records:

            We hereby certify that we have examined the Annual Conference Records of the 1960 session, and have found them correct with the exception of the following:


            1. On page 2, The date should be the "23rd" instead of the "24th" and a period after 1960 in the first sentence.

            2. On page 6, Under the Youth Fellowship General Committee, "Daniel K. Ziegler... and "Donal" should read "Daniel G. Ziegler" and "Donald."

            3. On page 21, Under Delegates, Allentown District, "Harrisburg, David F. Gardner" is omitted.

            4. On page 36, the word "unfilled" should read "unfulfilled" in the Article on the Millennium.

            5. On page 38, Under the Board of Directors, "T. D. Gehret" is omitted.

            6. On page 43, Under the Youth Fellowship General Committee, "Donal" should read "Donald".

            7. On page 46, Under resolution number 11, "W. W. Heffner" should read "W. F. Heffner".

            8. On page 47, Under missionaries "Leona" should read "Leonard".

            9. On page 49, under number 3, "the" should appear before number.

            10. On page 54, under Free Agency, Reference number 2, "Romans 3:10-12" should read "Romans 3:10, 12".

            11. Notation: Although G. Howard Van Sandt was admitted to the Conference Bar, p. 35, his name does not appear in the report of the Stationing, Boundary and Appropriating Committee, p. 71, due to his resignation.

            The name of Reynold D. Gardner whose admission to the Bar is not recorded was added by this committee.

We hereby submit two copies duly certified.

Frank L. Herb, Jr., Chairman

            Harvey J. Fritz, Jr., Secretary


            Report was adopted.

 

Resolved, That the minutes of last evening's session be opened.


            Resolved, That we approve the recommendation of the Committee on Examination of Candidates for Ordination.


            Resolved, That in the Business Rules of Conference, pg. 7 #5 and 6, the word "records" be changed to "minutes".

 

Report of the Statistical Committee: (See Reports)

Report was adopted.


            Resolved, That the recommendation of the Committee on Statistics be adopted, as follows:

            Resolved, That all the figures except Foreign Missions, Foreign Missions in Sunday School, Church Extension and Church Extension in Sunday School be recorded on the schedule and sent to the Conference church by Tuesday before Annual Conference.


            Resolved, That all pastors on the coming Sunday fill the pulpits of their new assignments.


            The Berean Bible School's Proposed Budget for 1961-1962 was presented by Jansen E. Hartman, the President.


REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE TO STUDY OUR CHURCH GOVERNMENT

Annual Conference 1961


            In carrying out its responsibilities the Committee to Study Our Church Government has met nine times during the 1960-1961 year. Preliminary work was done by three sub-committees which also met several times. Good interest was manifest in the work with all the men freely contributing to the discussions.

            One of the areas in which the Committee worked was our government on the particular (local) church level. Some need for refinements was noticed, and plans were laid to meet the need. The attention of the Committee was focused for about two meetings on the discussion of these things.

            Because the formulation of our government on the particular church level is nearing completion, the remaining time was used in study and discussion of our government on the fellowship-wide (denominational) level. This study and discussion covered the various boards and committees of the Annual Conference, their inter-relationship, their relationship to the Annual Conference and their relationship to the particular churches. To facilitate this study each member of the Committee studied the history of the Bible Fellowship Church as recorded in the Annual Conference Yearbooks. After working on these things for the greater part of the year, on July 28, 1961, the Committee met to discuss them with the Board of Directors. Much study remains to be completed in the realm of our fellowship-wide government.

The Committee to Study our Church Government

            Carl C. Cassel, Chairman       R. C. Reichenbach

            Willard E. Cassel, Secretary   James G. Koch

            Rufus Spedden                       George E. Herb

            A. L. Wentz                            Donald T. Kirkwood

            Harold A. Mann                     William A. Heffner

 

From the Minutes of the Board of Directors - September 21, 1961:

            RESOLVED: that we approve the Government Committee's Report to Annual Conference with the addition of the following resolution from our minutes of July 28, 1961:

            RESOLVED:  that we encourage the Government Committee to continue their studies on the conference-wide level following the pattern of our present form of Church Government, with necessary modifications.

Jansen E. Hartman, Secretary

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

 

Report was adopted.

 

Resolved, That we proceed with elections.

 

The following were elected:

            Board of Directors: F. B. Hertzog, C. E. Kirkwood, A. L. Seifert, Jansen E. Hartman, T. D. Gehret, John H. Riggall, Daniel K. Ziegler, Byron C. Cassel, Paul I. Wentz, Sr.

 

General Secretary of the Board of Foreign Missions: T. D. Gehret.


            Board of Foreign Missions: F. B. Hertzog, C. E. Kirkwood, T. D. Gehret, Earl M. Hosler, Willard E. Cassel, James R. Cressman, Kermit K. Gehman, Roy E. Williams, Rufus Spedden.

 

Adjourned with prayer by Richard H. Kline.


Tenth Meeting

Thursday Afternoon, October 12, 1961

            The meeting was opened with the singing of "Count Your Blessings" and prayer was offered by Leon Naudasher.


            The roll was called and the minutes of the last meeting were read and approved.

 

Resolved, That we continue with the elections.

 

The following were elected:

            Board of Church Extension: F. B. Hertzog, C. E. Kirkwood, William A. Heffner, Frank L. Herb, Jr., A. L. Seifert, Clayton E. Weber, S. A. Hackman.

            Board of Directors of the Home (for two years): T, D. Gehret, John E. Golla, Earl M. Hosler, Ernest B. Hartman, George W. Krigor, Timothy H, Gehman.

            Board of Education (for three years): W. B. Hottel, Harvey J. Fritz, Jr., Daniel K. Ziegler, John Stengele.

Report of the Ministerial Candidate Committee:

            Meeting eight times during the 1960-1961 year the Ministerial Candidate Committee continued to study the procedures for accepting men into the ministry of the Bible Fellowship Church. During the major portion of the time this year the committee discussed and wrote a statement of the qualifications for ministry in the Bible Fellowship Church. Inasmuch as men who are now serving in other churches continue to apply for transfer to the Bible Fellowship Church, a system of transfer was devised that would be fair to both the applicant and our Church. Because one man indicated an interest in our Reading Course Program, courses were developed covering Old Testament Survey, Church History and a book study in I Corinthians. The Committee also did preliminary work on the questionnaires and forms necessary to implement the system for men applying for the ministry under the method which was approved by Annual Conference last year and is pending approval at a second reading in 1961.

            This committee recommends the adoption of the following legislation on the qualifications of a minister and the method of transfer for men who now have credentials with other churches.

 

(1) THE QUALIFICATIONS FOR THE CHRISTIAN MINISTRY

            The Christian ministry is a divine calling which makes high and holy demands upon those who aspire to this work. Although the minister of the gospel preaches Christ and not himself, the personality of the minister is involved in the proclamation of the gospel and the performance of pastoral functions. It is imperative, therefore, to give heed to the qualifications imbedded in the Word of God. To minister effectively to his generation a man must have certain spiritual, personal, physical, and educational qualifications.


Spiritual Qualifications

            The Christian Minister must give evidence of having been born again, of having the assurance of salvation, of being inwardly persuaded that he is called of God to the Christian ministry and of being willing to make the necessary commitment.

            To minister in the name of Christ one must possess the gifts of the Holy Spirit and have a knowledge of God's plan and will.


Personal Qualifications

            Inasmuch as the primary function of the minister is that of proclaiming the Word of God, the minister must have a love for study and an ability to teach.

            Inasmuch as the minister is an elder who numbers among his duties ruling in addition to teaching, he must possess the qualities of leadership and administration together with a willingness to assume responsibility.

            Inasmuch as the minister is an under shepherd in the flock of God, he must have a genuine love for people, exercise patience in dealing with people, be impervious to criticism yet sensitive to correction and be fearless.

            Inasmuch as the minister is to be an example, he must not be a lover of money and must be willing to forgo personal rights and privileges for the sake of ministering to others.


Physical Qualifications

            The Christian minister must be a mature male who is physically and mentally fit, being free from impairments that would vitiate the effectiveness of his ministry and giving promise that he will be able to bear the demands of the ministry. To help in determining one's fitness a questionnaire supplied by this committee is to be completed by a medical doctor and returned to the secretary of this committee.


Educational Qualifications

            All men desiring to be ordained to the ministry of the Bible Fellowship Church shall have been graduated from high school and have three years of theological training or its equivalent. A man may be an applicant or candidate during the period of his training, but the three 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 three years of theological training.

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

 

(2) METHOD OF RECEIVING MEN FROM OTHER CHURCHES

            When a minister from another church seeks ministerial credentials in the Bible Fellowship Church, he shall apply to the Ministerial Candidate Committee.

            The applicant shall produce satisfactory evidence that he is in good standing in his church and that his ordination was intended to be within and to the ministry of the Church universal, was performed by the authority charged with the exercise of this specific Church-power within the ordaining community and was accompanied by the laying on of hands by such as have themselves been similarly ordained. The candidate shall also furnish evidence of having severed all connections with other denominations before being enrolled.


            Having compiled with these provisions, the candidate shall, upon being received, begin with the status of an ordained minister serving as a probationer.

            After serving at least a year as a probationer, he may be examined by the Credentials Committee. The Credentials Committee may then recommend to the Annual Conference that he be accepted as an ordained minister with full privileges in the Bible Fellowship Church. This recognition shall be made known in a public service.

            This committee also recommends that a study be made of the possibility of having the voting membership of Annual Conference limited to ordained men.


            Mr. M. Leslie Campbell was examined on the Articles of Faith and Supplemental Rules. His grade is 81; District Superintendent F. B. Hertzog was the examiner.

            Donald T. Kirkwood, Chairman         William A. Heffner

            Carl C. Cassel, Secretary                    P. T. Stengele,

            Jansen E. Hartman

                        Committee

 

            Report was adopted.


            Resolved, That the Ministerial Candidate Committee be instructed to make a study as to whether a probationer shall or shall not be permitted to vote at Annual Conference.


            Resolved, That we continue the elections.


            The following were elected:


            Committee on Ministerial Candidates: A. L. Seifert, Earl M. Hosler, Jansen E. Hartman, William A. Heffner, Carl C. Cassel.


            Committee on Credentials: F. B. Hertzog, C. E. Kirkwood, T. D. Gehret, W. B. Hottel, John H. Riggall.


            Youth Fellowship General Committee: F. B. Hertzog, C. E. Kirkwood, LeRoy S. Heller, Donald B. Schaeffer, Russell T. Allen, Daniel G. Ziegler, Warren Zuck, Harold P. Shelly, Jr., Donald Siegfried, Clyde W. Snyder.


            Sunday School Promotion Committee: (For three years) Robert W. Smock, James R. Cressman, Robert Lee.


            Resolved, That the group responsible for Victory Valley Camp be given the status of a Board rather than that of a Committee. This Board shall be responsible for all business of the Camp.


            Board of Victory Valley Camp: F. B. Hertzog, C. E. Kirkwood, David E. Thomann, Carl C. Cassel, S. A. Hackman, Clayton E. Weber, Kermit K. Gehman.


            Resolved, That A. Franklin Campbell and A. F. Smith be excused from attending the balance of the Conference session.

 

Adjourned with prayer by Earl M. Hosler.


Eleventh Meeting

Friday Morning, October 13, 1961

            The meeting was opened with singing "Jesus Thou Joy of Loving Hearts," followed by N. H. Wolf leading in prayer.


            Rev. S. A. Witmer, Ph. D., Executive Director of the Accrediting Association of Bible Colleges, addressed the Conference on Christian Education.


            The roll was called and the minutes of the former meeting were read and approved.


REPORT OF THE LAYMEN'S BENEVOLENT SOCIETY


            WHEREAS, the LAYMEN'S BENEVOLENT SOCIETY OF THE PENNSYLVANIA CONFERENCE OF THE MENNONITE BRETHREN IN CHRIST, as originally named, has within recent years, been relatively inactive; and,

            WHEREAS, it appears to said Society and to the Board of Trustees of the LAYMEN'S BENEVOLENT SOCIETY of the BIBLE FELLOWSHIP CHURCH, formerly the MENNONITE BRETHREN IN CHRIST CHURCH, to be advantageous to discontinue the acceptance of new members into said Society, and to arrange for its dissolution;

            NOW, THEREFORE, we recommend to the Seventy-eighth Session of Annual Conference of the Bible Fellowship Church, convening Monday, October 9, 1961 at 9:00 a.m. in the Bethel Bible Fellowship Church, Allentown, Pennsylvania, that the following steps be taken for the dissolution of the LAYMEN'S BENEVOLENT SOCIETY of the BIBLE FELLOWSHIP CHURCH.

            1. No new members be received or members in default to be reinstated after date of acceptance of this resolution by Annual Conference.

            2. Authorizing the officers of the Society to pay to each fully paid member the sum of Seventy-five dollars ($75.00) as a donation in lieu of a donation after death upon the receipt of an appropriate release.

            3. Authorizing the officers of the Society to pay to all other members in good standing a donation equal to the sum paid in at time of dissolution upon receipt of an appropriate release.

            4. Whereas the Society from time to time has been loaning money to various churches and presently holds evidence of indebtedness against churches, we recommend that the officers of this Society be authorized to turn over to the Board of Directors of the Bible Fellowship Church an amount equal to the sum of Thirteen Thousand Five Hundred Dollars ($13,500.00) without interest, in cash or securities or both, to be used by them for a period of ten years as a revolving fund to help churches of our denomination who are in need of capital funds and who meet the requirements for obtaining such funds as set forth by the Board of Directors of the Bible Fellowship Church. After ten years this fund shall be given to the Board of Trustees of the Bible Fellowship Church Home and it shall be used as set forth in By-Laws of 1960 Year Book Pages 12 and 13 under the Caption "The Home."

            5. We also recommend that the officers of this Society be authorized to donate to the Annual Conference of the Bible Fellowship Church the sum of Fifty-five Hundred Dollars ($5,500.00) and to Berean Bible School the sum of One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00).

            6. Whereas this Society was instituted for the purpose of giving relief in time of need, therefore, we recommend that after all donations and expenses are met and adequate reserves provided and revolving fund established, the balance of the fund in either cash or securities be donated to the Board of Trustees of the BIBLE FELLOWSHIP CHURCH Home, for the care of the ageing and other needs according to the By-laws as set forth in 1960 Year Book pages 12 and 13 under Caption "The Home".

Respectfully submitted this 27th day of September A.D. 1961.

Arthur W. Deppe, President

Allen S. Weiss, Secretary

Albert L. Wentz, Treasurer

 

Report was adopted.


            Resolved, That the recommendations listed in the Laymen's Benevolent Society's report be adopted.


            Petitions of local churches and recommendations from various boards and committees were considered as follows:

            1. Petition from the Bethany Bible Fellowship Church, Lebanon, Pa. (See Report of Committee on Local Conference Records)

            Resolved, That the Publication and Printing Committee print a limited number of receipt forms and that a Committee on Stewardship be elected, composed of three pastors and two laymen, to study the financial structure throughout the denomination.


            2. Petition from Bethel Bible Fellowship Church, Allentown, Pa. (See Report of Committee on Local Conference Records)

            Resolved, That this petition be referred to the Government Committee for study.


            3. Recommendation from the Board of Publication and Printing. (See Report of Board of Publication and Printing)

            Resolved, That this committee be instructed to bring to the Adjourned Session of Annual Conference samples of permanent church record books.


            4. Recommendations #1 and #2 from the Sunday School Promotion Committee.

(See Report of Sunday School Promotion Committee)

            Resolved, That every Bible Fellowship Sunday School receive an offering for Denominational Sunday School Promotion. This offering should be mailed to the Financial Secretary of the Committee before April 1, 1962.


            Resolved, That we hold a Denominational Sunday School Convention on Saturday, May 19, 1962 in the Bethel Bible Fellowship Church, Allentown, Pa.

            5. Petition from the Board of Directors of the Home. (See Report of the Board of Directors of the Home)

            Resolved, That the Board of Directors of the Home be granted permission to incorporate the Bible Fellowship Church Home located at 38 South New Street, Nazareth, Pennsylvania.

 

Adjourned with prayer and benediction by E. E. Kublic.


Twelfth Meeting

Friday Afternoon, October 13, 1961

            The meeting was opened with singing of "I Love To Tell the Story" and Ernest B. Hartman led in prayer.


            The roll was called and the minutes of the eleventh meeting were read and approved.


            Walter H. Frank, General Director of the Greater Europe Mission, addressed the Conference, requesting prayer for the work.

 

Report of the Committee on Applicants for Annual Conference License:

            Whereas, We, the Committee, have examined M. Leslie Campbell and are persuaded that he is a man of God, called by Him to the Gospel Ministry, therefore,

We recommend him for Annual Conference License.

            Jansen E. Hartman      W. B. Hottel

            J. H. Riggall               W. A. Heffner

            W. W. Hartman

                        Committee


            Report was adopted.

 

Resolved, That we grant M. Leslie Campbell Annual Conference License.

 

Report of the Committee on Communications:

Communications have been received from the following:

Foreign Missionaries: Leonard and Nina Buck, Olive I. Rawn.

            Ministers Working with Other Organizations: Walter H. Frank, J. B. Henry, C. Leslie Miller.

Superannuated Minister: J. B. Layne.

Minister on Leave of Absence: Paul E. Baer.

            Each sent us their greetings and best wishes for the Annual Conference and assured us that they would be in prayer for the activities of the Conference Sessions and for the Ministry of the Bible Fellowship Church.

            We urge the members of Annual Conference to continue in prayer for Leonard and Nina Buck in their labors in Christian Literature in South Africa, Olive Rawn and her work in the Sudan, Walter H. Frank and his activities in the Greater Europe Mission, the ministry of J. B. Henry with the Africa Inland Mission, C. Leslie Miller and his editorial work with the GOSPEL LIGHT Press and for J. B. Layne and Paul E. Baer that they may be constantly conscious of the abiding presence of the Lord.

            David E. Thomann     Richard H. Kline

            Frank L. Herb

                        Committee

 

Report was adopted.


REPORT OF THE AUDITING COMMITTEE


            We have examined the accounts and reports listed below and find them to be correct. A few minor errors that had been discovered have been satisfactorily corrected.

District Superintendent reports

Director of Church Extension

Conference Treasurer

Board of Directors

Board of Education

Board of Church Extension

Board of Foreign Missions

Berean Bible School

Sunday School Promotion Committee

Committee on Finance

Committee on Statistics

First and Second Division Camp Meetings

Camp Meeting Cafeteria

General Campmeeting Committee

Minister's Retirement Fund

Laymen's Benevolent Society

Beneficiary Fund

Victory Valley Camp

Youth Fellowship General Committee

Fellowship News Subscriptions

Board of the Home

Committee on Publication and Printing

 

            T. D. Gehret                           Clarence L. Kauffman            William Hunsberger

            James G. Koch                       R. Paul Schaeffer                    Horace A. Kauffman

            Rufus Spedden                       Edw. J. Dietzman                   A. F. Smith

            R. S. Weidner                         Harold A. Mann                     A. Franklin Campbell

            Clayton E. Weber                   Robert Breitegam                   Daniel K. Ziegler

            Robert W. Gehret                   Geo. W. Krigor

                        Committee

 

Report was adopted.



REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON RESOLUTIONS


            1. Whereas, we the members of the 78th Annual Conference of the Bible Fellowship Church are conscious of the Lord's divine blessings upon our denomination throughout this year, in giving us consecrated, spiritual pastors and a faithful constituency, therefore

            Resolved, that we lift our hearts in thanks to God for them and look to Him for His continual favor and guidance upon them.


            2. Whereas, the Lord in this past year has again given to us devoted leaders, District Superintendents F. B. Hertzog and C. E. Kirkwood and has enabled them to discharge the duties of their offices in a most exemplary manner, therefore,

            Resolved, That we acknowledge these labors of love, extend to them our appreciation for their sacrificial service and pledge our loyalty and prayer support.


            3. Whereas, William A. Heffner, Director of Church Extension, has with dedication and vigor served his office and given himself unsparingly in the interest of the churches and the young men under his care; therefore

            Resolved, that with gratitude we pray God's continued blessing, guidance and strength upon him.


            4. Whereas, Berean Bible School under the leadership of President Jansen E. Hartman, has been enabled by our God to continue to teach and train young people in the things of God; therefore,

            Resolved, that we thank the Lord for this institution of Christian Education and pledge them our financial and prayer support.


            5. Whereas, Pastor A. L. Seifert and the congregation of Bethel Bible Fellowship Church of Allentown have so amply and excellently provided meals and lodging for members of the 78th Annual Conference, therefore,

            Resolved, that we hereby express our gratitude for their generous provision; and further,

            Resolved, that the Secretary of the Annual Conference send Pastor Seifert a copy of this resolution to be read to the congregation.


            6. Whereas, N. H. Wolf served as Editor of the Year Book, Paul I. Wentz as Treasurer of the Annual Conference and T. D. Gehret as General Secretary of the Board of Foreign Missions; therefore,

            Resolved, that the Editor of the Year Book receive Fifty Dollars, ($50.00), and that the Conference Treasurer and the Secretary of the Board of Foreign Missions receive Seventy Five Dollars ($75.00) each. The first two shall be paid by the Committee on Publication and Printing and the last by the Board of Foreign Missions.


            7. Whereas, David E. Thomann and R. C. Reichenbach have served acceptably in the offices of Editor and Circulation Manager of Fellowship News; therefore,

            Resolved, that a gift of $100.00 be given to the Editor and a gift of $25.00 be given to the Circulation Manager; these gifts shall be given by the Board of Publication and Printing,


            8. Whereas, P. T. Stengele, loyal and devoted in the pastorate for 43 years, is retiring at this Annual Conference; therefore,

            Resolved, That we thank God for the faithful ministry of Brother Stengele and pray God's richest blessing upon him.

            John H. Riggall, Chairman     Carl C. Cassel

            Earl M. Hosler, Secretary       Elwood L. Heiser,

                        Committee


            Report was adopted.


            Recommendations #l, #3 and #4 of the Board of Victory Valley were considered.

            (See Report of the Board of Victory Valley)

 

Resolved, That the dates for the camps in 1962 shall be as follows:

                        July      7-14  Girls 8-12 years old

                                    14-21  Girls 8-12 years old

                                    21-28  Junior high boys and girls

                             28-Aug. 4    Junior high boys and girls

                        Aug.     4-11  Senior high boys and girls

                                    11-18  Boys 8-12 years old

                                    18-25  Boys 8-12 years old


            Resolved, That the Sunday Schools of each Bible Fellowship Church receive an offering for Victory Valley Camp before March 1, 1962. The check may be made payable to Victory Valley Camp and sent to David E. Thomann, 25 S. Third St., Quakertown, Pa., secretary of the Board of Victory Valley.


            Resolved, That the facilities of Victory Valley Camp be available for limited use by groups from Bible Fellowship Churches. Arrangements for such use shall be made through the secretary of the Board.

 

The Recommendations of the Board of Directors were considered.

(See Report of the Board of Directors)


            Whereas, It is the desire of this Conference, as expressed by a majority vote to allow a minister to retire having attained the age of sixty-five, and,

            Whereas, The delay of two years before the change of the By-laws can be effective may present a hardship, therefore,

            Resolved, That the following resolution be declared effective on one reading under the Rule of Exception.

            Resolved, That a minister of the Bible Fellowship Church having attained the age of sixty-five (65) may retire from the active ministry and dating from the time he receives Annual Conference license, he shall receive an annuity of twenty-four dollars ($24.00) for each year of active service, payable in monthly installments. This resolution to take the place of "first" (under Annuities) p. 14, 1960.

            Resolved, That "second" (under Annuities) p. 14, 1960 Year Book be deleted.

            Resolved, That paragraph M, p. 19, 1960 Year Book be moved to p. 15 and become "second" under annuities.


            Resolved, That any exception to standing rules may be allowed by three-fourth (3/4) vote of the Annual Conference. The reason for such exception shall be fully spread on the minutes.


            Resolved, That the auditing procedure for reporting to the Statistical Committee shall be according to that outlined on p. 32 & 33 of the 1960 Year Book.


            Resolved, That the section on "Special Offerings" p. 17 & 18, 1960 Year Book be removed from the section of the By-laws and placed elsewhere in the Year Book.

 

Supplemental Report of the Board of Church Extension:

This report is presented to comply with the following resolutions:

I.          RESOLVED That the Board of Foreign Missions and the Board of Home Missions study the wording and format of the pledge cards now in use by our churches. A suggested card is to be submitted to the 1959 Annual Conference. (page 55-E 1958 Year Book - Adjourned session)

II.RESOLVED: That we ask the Home Mission Board to investigate changes in our Home Mission program that will better enable us to train men and to establish churches. They shall submit to the next Annual Conference a proposed program to bring about the desired changes.

(page 41 1959 Year Book)

 

Sample of "Faith Promise" card —


FAITH PROMISE

for

CHURCH EXTENSION AND FOREIGN MISSIONS

            "Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver." II Cor. 9:7.


            In humble dependence upon God to Whom I owe all that I am and have, and in faith in His enabling power, I promise by His help to give:

            FOR CHURCH EXTENSION

            The sum of $     ( ) weekly ( ) monthly ( ) yearly

            FOR FOREIGN MISSIONS

            The sum of $ ( ) weekly ( ) monthly ( ) yearly

            Year              Due date

            Name         Address

 

BIBLE FELLOWSHIP CHURCH of


* * *

We recommend the following:

            1. That Faith Promise cards be printed in different colors so that a different color may be used for each year.

            2. That Faith Promise cards be printed in more legible type on a large card.

            3. That Faith Promise cards be printed in duplicate.

            4. That numbered receipt books be provided for missionary gifts.

            5. That we encourage missionary giving on a weekly or monthly basis rather than annually.

            6. That an envelope be printed for the convenience of contributors to Missionary offerings.


            It is obvious that the blessing of the Lord MUST be upon any church if it is to grow. The history of THE CHURCH, as well as the Bible Fellowship Church, reveals that God blesses the efforts of those who obey the call to take the Gospel of Christ to unregenerate everywhere. No amount of effort or organizational machinery can guarantee the salvation of souls or the forming of new congregations of believers. If the Bible Fellowship Church is to grow it must maintain a right relationship with God, placing proper emphasis upon the Word of God which He directs should be proclaimed, and demanding close adherence to the program of evangelism as set forth in the Scriptures.

            It is time for the Bible Fellowship Church to re-evaluate its evangelistic emphasis. Every Pastor and every church must ask: "Are we truly dedicated to the task of evangelism? Do we have a sincere desire to grow and expand our borders? Are we willing to make the necessary sacrifices to produce this expansion?"


INTERNAL EXPANSION:

            Over the past 6 years we have seen a definite internal growth, which may directly bear upon the Church Extension Department's development. Within the past six years, eleven churches formerly pastored by five Pastors have acquired their own Pastor. With the possibility of two more circuits proceeding similarly the record would show the following: instead of seven Pastors located at fifteen churches, fifteen Pastors on these fields. This is a healthy internal growth — but not without presenting problems. Until each of these churches are able to come to the indigenous status they will require continued financial assistance from the Church Extension Department. This naturally limits the Church Extension Department in its outreach into new fields. Also, a man-power problem is created by the need in breaking up circuits.

            Even though we may be handicapped slightly during this "transition period" of our Church, we MUST continue to reach out with the gospel — if even on a limited scale temporarily. The cooperation of every Pastor and every church is imperative.


NEW CHURCHES MUST BE ESTABLISHED

            We must encourage our present established churches to recognize THEIR responsibility of extending our borders. The initial step should be taken by the Pastor and church, with the Church Extension Director and the Board providing all the advice and assistance requested. The idea of this "Mother—church" program seems to have a New Testament basis, and if so will produce New Testament results.

            We should determine whether there are any of our Churches that have within its membership several families who live in and commute from an area removed from the Church in which they worship, which area may not have an Evangelical testimony. When Pastor and people see an opportunity for the establishment of a work then the Board of Church Extension should enter into negotiations that could result in the fruition of this goal.

            The only addition to our Conference in twenty years was realized in a small way through this manner, Lancaster, Pa. Though here there was more than one church involved both Pastors and people were desirous of establishing a work.

            Time and experience has proved that multiplying Church Extension works without establishing them is not improving nor strengthening our work. Actually it results in increasing our expenditures with little or no lasting accomplishment.


PROPOSED PROJECTS:

            1. Use God's appointed method to develop better trained men.

(a) Gcd's greatest leaders never assumed responsibility without first undergoing a preliminary period of practical training. This was usually accomplished with wide experience.

Examples: Moses - "Trained in all the wisdom of Egypt," Joshua assisted Moses, Apostles - inner circle became foundation of the early church, Paul's companions - Timothy (Acts 16:1-3a), Titus (Gal. 2:1 & Titus 1:5), Tychicus (Col. 4:7,8).

            2. Men should not enter Church Extension ministry immediately upon the completion of their formal training except when unavoidable.

(a) Time would first be spent serving as an assistant to one or more of our Pastors. Perhaps if we could provide an allowance and the Church the housing, this could be accomplished. There are many things that would have to be considered in this effort — the personality of the worker and the Pastor under whom he would be serving would have to be carefully regulated.

(b) The possibility of some men serving a brief period with an organization such as "Missionary Internship" should be investigated.

            3. A method could be inaugurated whereby one or more qualified men from established Conference appointments would serve Church Extension Churches.

(a) These Pastors would not be selected on the basis of number of years served in the Conference but on the basis of their accomplishments.

(b) Through this method several of our Church Extension appointments could in all probability become self-supporting Churches in a brief period and then contribute to the work of Extension and other Conference projects.

            4. One or more men now engaged in Church Extension ministry could be encouraged to remain in this type of work to continue opening new works and solidify struggling assemblies.

                        (a) These men would be ordained by the Annual Conference and receive recognition similar to the other Conference Pastors.

            5. Increased Promotional material for our Church Extension work.

                        (a) Material similar to that used by our Berean Bible School should be used.

(b) It would acquaint our people with the financial needs, proposed building programs, needed repairs, renovations, future plans etc.

            6. Limits could be made as to the amount of assistance that will be given to the development of any one church. A policy of granting financial aid from Conference funds must be developed that would be designed to give the church a substantial beginning but would seek to bring the church to self-supporting status within specified time limits.


            The Board of Church Extension realizes that these are only a few suggestions. There are other matters which may be more crucial and have not been mentioned. There is much concern in some of our churches regarding the fact that our Conference has not made more rapid advances in its Extension program. We must advance or suffer more severe losses in the future. May our God provide the needed wisdom, courage and willingness to sacrifice which is necessary to reach many with God's message in this crucial hour of the world's history.

BOARD OF CHURCH EXTENSION

            C. E. Kirkwood, Chairman                 F. B. Hertzog

            A. L. Seifert, Secretary                       Jansen E. Hartman

            William A. Heffner                            Clayton E. Weber

            Stanley A. Hackman


            Report was adopted.


            Resolved, That the Faith Promise Card recommended by the Board of Church Extension be referred to the Committee on Stewardship.


            Resolved, That the Conference commend the Board of Church Extension upon the recommendations made for developing the work under their jurisdiction and that we encourage the Board to further develop these proposals.


            Recommendations #I, #2, and #3 of the Board of Education were considered.


            Resolved, That we proclaim a day as Berean Bible School Day in the Sunday Schools and Churches at which time offerings shall be received in the schools and churches for the purpose of promoting interest and support of the school. Checks for these contributions shall be sent and made payable to the Berean Bible School, 1020 S. Hall Street, Allentown, Pa.


            Resolved, That a special offering be received at the annual Youth Rallies at Camp Meeting at Mizpah Grove.


            Resolved, That the laymen on the Board of Education shall constitute a committee to work with all our churches to promote the advantages of training at Berean Bible School and to formulate a plan to raise $28,250.00 needed to carry on the Berean Bible School program in the 1961-62 year. The District Superintendents shall be advisory members of the committee.


            The Recommendation of the Committee to Publish FELLOWSHIP NEWS were considered.

(See Report of the Committee to Publish FELLOWSHIP NEWS)

            Resolved, That the month of February be designated as subscription month.


            Resolved, That honorariums to the Editor and Circulation Manager be paid from the Board of Publication and Printing.


            The Recommendation of the Committee to Study Camp Meetings was considered.

 

(See Report of the Committee to Study Camp Meetings)


            Resolved, That a committee of 7 ministering brethren, including the District Superintendents, be elected to study program, grounds and facilities for future use of Camp Meetings.

 

Resolved, That we suspend the rules and adjourn to meet at 6:00 o'clock.

 

Adjourned 5:00 p.m. with prayer by Clarence L. Kauffman.


Thirteenth Meeting

Friday evening, October 13, 1961

The meeting was opened with singing of "Alone with God" and Walter H. Frank led in prayer.


            The roll was called and the minutes of the afternoon meeting were read and approved.

 

Resolved, That we proceed with elections:

The following were elected:

Annual Conference Treasurer: Paul I. Wentz, Sr.

Editor of FELLOWSHIP NEWS: David E. Thomann.

Circulation Manager of FELLOWSHIP NEWS: R. C. Reichenbach.

            Committee to Publish FELLOWSHIP NEWS: David E. Thomann, R. C. Reichenbach, Robert W. Smock, Robert W. Gehret, James R. Cressman.


            Resolved, That we elect a Committee of seven Ministers and three laymen outside of the Board of Directors, to study and formulate proposals for the revision of our Church Government. All work of this Committee is to be approved through the Board of Directors before being presented to the next Annual Conference.


            The following were elected: Willard E. Cassel, R. C. Reichenbach, James G. Koch, George E. Herb, Richard H. Kline, Carl C. Cassel, Elwood L. Heiser, A. L. Wentz, Rufus Spedden, Harold L. Mann.


            Committee to Study Camp Meetings: James A. Bell, Robert W. Smock, A. L. Seifert, John E. Golla, Robert F. Johnson, C. E. Kirkwood, F. B. Hertzog.


            Committee on Stewardship: James G. Koch, LeRoy S. Heller, Elwood L. Heiser, Daniel G. Ziegler, Byron C. Cassel.


            Laymen's Benevolent Society: Arthur W. Deppe, President; Allen S. Weiss, Secretary; A. L. Wentz, Treasurer.

 

Report of the Committee on Resolutions:

            Whereas, Rev. R. H. Gehman served faithfully in the Bible Fellowship Church for many years, even to the time of his sudden death in August 1961, therefore,

            Resolved, That we praise the Lord for Brother Gehman's quiet and faithful service and pray God's blessing on his family.


            Whereas, Rev. F. M. Hottel served faithfully in the Bible Fellowship Church as pastor and later, as a retired minister until the time of his death in October 1960, therefore,

            Resolved, That we praise the Lord for Brother Hottel's self-sacrificing service throughout the years and pray God's blessing upon his family.

            J. H. Riggall               Elwood L. Heiser

            Earl M. Hosler            Carl C. Cassel,

                        Committee


            Report was adopted.


            Resolved, That the Chairman appoint an Agenda Committee of three. He appointed John Dunn, John E. Golla and Willard E. Cassel.


            Resolved, That the 79th Annual Conference of the Bible Fellowship Church convene on October 15, 1962 at 10:00 a.m. in the Bethany Bible Fellowship Church, West Broad St., Hatfield, Pa.


            Resolved, That the Chair appoint a committee of three on Program. He appointed Jansen E. Hartman, Carl C. Cassel and Earl M. Hosler.


            Resolved, That we have a Ministerial Convention to be held Tuesday and Wednesday, May 1-2, 1962 at Victory Valley.


            Officers for the Ministerial Convention: C. E. Kirkwood, Chairman; Richard H. Kline, Secretary.


            Resolved, That the expenses of the Ministerial Convention be divided among the brethren attending.


            Resolved, That the Committee on Program be composed of the officers of the Convention, the District Superintendents and two pastors. Committee on Program: C. E. Kirkwood, F. B. Hertzog, Richard H. Kline, Bert N. Brosius, James A. Beil.


            Resolved, That the Chairman appoint a Committee on Publication and Printing. He appointed John H. Riggall, John Dunn and Willard E. Cassel.


            Resolved, That all contributions received for Laymen's Benevolent Society shall be paid by check or money order payable to A. L. Wentz, Treasurer, and forwarded to Allen S. Weiss, 1906 Hilltop Terrace, Bethlehem, Pa.


            Resolved, That we hold two Camp Meetings in Mizpah Grove, Allentown, Pa., the first to be held by the Bethlehem District, June 30 to July 8, 1962, and the second to be held by the Allentown District, July 14 to 22, 1962.



            Report of the Committee to Organize the Allentown District Camp Meeting: The Churches of the Allentown District and the Missions located at Millersville, Paradise, Pa., Binghamton, N.Y., and Denville, N.J., shall comprise this Camp Meeting to be held in Mizpah Grove, Allentown Pa., July 14 to 22, 1962.

            Officers: A. L. Seifert, Chairman; N. H. Wolf, Secretary; John E. Golla, Treasurer.

            F. B. Hertzog, Chairman

            Russell T. Allen, Secretary


            Report of the Committee to Organize the Bethlehem District Camp Meeting:

            The Churches of the Bethlehem District and the Missions located at Belvidere, Trenton and Finesville, N.J., Miller Heights and Macungie shall comprise this Camp Meeting to be held in Mizpah Grove, Allentown, Pa., June 30 to July 8, 1962.

            Officers: T. D. Gehret, Chairman; D. E. Thomann, Secretary; Donald T. Kirkwood, Treasurer.

C. E. Kirkwood, Chairman

            LeRoy S. Heller, Secretary


            Resolved, That one ($1.00) dollar registration fee per tent accompany each order, not refundable and be turned over by the Registrar to each respective Camp Meeting Committee.


            Resolved, That the rental of tents shall be eight ($8.00) dollars each per Camp Meeting in addition to the registration fee to be paid to the Pastors before Camp Meeting. The Pastors shall pay rents to the Officers of the respective Committee no later than Tuesday of Camp involved, together with a list of names and numbers of tents.


            Resolved, That all tent orders be properly filled in and signed by the person placing the order and be sent to Donald B. Schaeffer, Registrar, no later than June 15.


            Frank L. Herb, secretary of the Board of Church Extension, announced the following appointments:

Binghamton, N.Y. - David Watkins

Finesville, N.J. - Robert E. McIntyre

Paradise - Leon K. Overpeck

Millersville - M. Leslie Campbell

Miller Heights - Raymond R. Dotts

Trenton, N.J. - LeRoy S. Bickel

Denville, N.J. - Ronald C. Mahurin

Belvidere, N.J. - Richard H. Ruth

Macungie - Robert J. Entler


            Whereas, We have elected some men to our Boards and Committees who are not members of this Annual Conference, therefore,

            Resolved, That the Conference Secretary inform by mail, all such men of their election.


            Resolved, That the Adjourned Session of Annual Conference be held Saturday, April 7, at 9:00 a.m. in the Bethel Bible Fellowship Church and that each member make provision for his own lunch.


            Resolved, That all mid-season offerings be paid at the Adjourned Session of Annual Conference.


            Resolved, That the offering for "the Home" be paid at the Adjourned Session.


            Resolved, That we receive a contribution of 50 per member as reported at this Annual Conference for the Moving Fund.


            Resolved, That each church be assessed on the basis of 40 per church member as reported at this Annual Conference; that this assessment for the Board of Publication and Printing Fund be divided equally between the Church and Sunday School treasuries and this assessment be remitted at the Adjourned Session of Annual Conference.

 

Resolved, That paragraph "X" p. 20, 1960 Year Book be deleted.


            Committee on Church Forms: John Dunn, Donald B. Schaeffer, James A. Beil, Earl M. Hosler, Robert W. Smock, George E. Herb, Harvey J. Fritz, Jr.

 

Resolved, That we adjourn.

 

The Conference adjourned at 10:15 p.m. with prayer by Chairman F. B. Hertzog.

 

SIGNED:

            F. B. Hertzog, District Superintendent, Chairman,

            C. E. Kirkwood, District Superintendent, Vice Chairman,

            N. H. Wolf, Secretary,

Paul I. Wentz, Sr., Treasurer,

William A. Heffner, Director of Church Extension,

Jansen E. Hartman, President of Berean Bible School,

Ernest B. Hartman, Assistant Secretary,

Robert W. Smock, Recording Secretary.


Russell T. Allen, Paul E. Baer, E. W. Bean, Carl C. Cassel, Willard E. Cassel, John Dunn, T. D. Gehret, John E. Golla, W. W. Hartman, LeRoy S. Heller, Frank L. Herb, Jr., George E. Herb, Earl M. Hosler, W. B. Hottel, Donald T. Kirkwood, Richard H. Kline, James G. Koch, R. C. Reichenbach,

John H. Riggall, Donald B. Schaeffer, A. L. Seifert, P. T. Stengele, David E. Thomann, E.E. Kublic,

E. J. Rutman, A. G. Woodring, James A. Beil, Bert N. Brosius, Harvey J. Fritz, Jr., Reynold D. Gardner, Elwood L. Heiser, Daniel G. Ziegler, Alva C. Cassel, Norman R. Weiss, Robert F. Johnson,

Clarence L. Kauffman, R. Paul Schaeffer, Robert Breitegam, A. F. Smith, T. Lamarn Manney, David Fahs, Roy E. Williams, Daniel K. Ziegler, David F. Gardner, Horace A. Kauffman, William R. Hunsberger, R. S. Weidner, S. A. Hackman, A. W. Deppe, Charles W. Weaber, Edwin P. Yerger, Burton Deppe, George R. Fish, A. Franklin Campbell, Byron C. Cassel, George W. Krigor, Allen F. LaRose, Clayton E. Weber, Harold A. Mann, Rufus Spedden, Allan C. Palmer, Carl H. Kellerman, Robert W. Gehret, Leon H. Naudasher, Edward J. Dietzman, John I. Mengel, Ralph D. Cole, John L. Shelly.