Constitution of CrossRoads Community Church
February 8, 2016
WHEREAS, it is the express purpose of God our Heavenly Father to call out of the world a saved people who shall contribute to the body of Christ, built and established on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ being the Chief Cornerstone; and,
WHEREAS, the Members of the Body of Christ are enjoined to assemble themselves together for worship, fellowship, counsel, and instruction in the Word of God and the work of the ministry and for the exercise of those spiritual gifts and offices provided for in the New Testament, therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED: We recognize ourselves a body of Christian believers working together for the common purpose of spreading the Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and under the laws of the State of Maryland we may exercise all the rights and privileges granted to religious bodies.
Article I Name
The name of this corporation shall be CrossRoads Community Church of Harford County Incorporated as approved for record with the state of Maryland on April 13, 1998. This corporation shall hereafter be referred to as the Church.
Article II Vision
To be a biblically functioning community of believers that fosters authentic relationships, innovative worship and practical Bible teaching so “that all the people of the earth may know that the Lord (Jesus Christ) is God and that there is none else” (1 Kings 8:60).
Article III Purpose
The purposes of this Church shall be:
- To glorify God by connecting people to Jesus Christ and His family and leading them to become His fully devoted followers. (Matthew 28:19-20; John 15:18).
- To establish and oversee places of worship under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. (Titus 1:5; Psalm 107:3; Acts 2:42, 46-47; Hebrews 10:25).
- To conduct the work of making disciples at home and abroad in obedience to the command of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 16:15-16; Luke 24:46-47; John 20:21).
- To create ministries or teams as may be necessary in order to establish places of worship, to spread the Gospel, (including but not limited to educational, recreational, community, and social services), and to support missionary activity. (Acts 6:1-7).
- To have the right to own, hold in trust, use, possess, sell, convey, mortgage, lease or dispose of such property, real or chattel, as may be needed for the prosecution of its work.
- To ordain ministers of the Gospel and be their covering. (1 Thessalonians 5:12; 2 Thessalonians 2:15; 3:4; Hebrews 13:17).
Article IV Core Beliefs
- IN ESSENTIAL BELIEFS — WE HAVE UNITY.
“There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” (Ephesians 4:4-6).
- IN NON-ESSENTIAL BELIEFS — WE HAVE LIBERTY.
- “Receive one who is weak in the faith, but not to disputes over doubtful things” (Romans 14:1).
- “Who are you to judge another's servant? To his own master he stands or falls. Indeed, he will be made to stand, for God is able to make him stand” (Romans 14:4).
- “So then each of us shall give account of himself to God” (Romans 14:12).
- “Do you have faith? Have it to yourself before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves” (Romans 14:22).
- IN ALL OUR BELIEFS — WE SHOW CHARITY.
“And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing” (1 Corinthians 13:2).
The following beliefs address only the fundamental matters—though they are consistent with the revealed truth in the Bible.
- ABOUT THE BIBLE The Bible is God’s Word to us. Human authors, under the supernatural guidance of the Holy Spirit, wrote it. It is the supreme source of truth for Christian beliefs and living. Because it is inspired by God, it is the truth without any mixture of error. (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20, 21; Psalm 119:160).
- ABOUT GOD God is the Creator and Ruler of the universe. He has eternally existed as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. These three are co-equal and are one God. (Genesis 1:1; Matthew 28:19; Acts 5:3-4; Hebrews 1:1-3).
- ABOUT JESUS Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He is co-equal with the Father and the Holy Spirit. Jesus lived a sinless human life and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all people by dying on a cross. He arose from the dead after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death. There is no other name under Heaven whereby one must be saved. He ascended to Heaven’s glory and will return again someday to earth to reign as King of Kings, and Lord of Lords. (John 1:1-5; Hebrews 4:14, 15; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Acts 1:9-11; Acts 4:12).
- ABOUT THE HOLY SPIRIT The Holy Spirit is co-equal with the Father and the Son of God. He is present in the world to make people aware of their need for Jesus Christ. He also lives in every Christian from the moment of salvation. He provides the Christian with power for living, understanding of spiritual truth, and guidance in doing what is right. It is the special role of the Holy Spirit in the plan of redemption to carry on the work of sanctification. As Christians, we seek to live under His control daily to grow in sanctification and holiness. Such a life cannot be lived out through a person’s own efforts but is a gift from God; and is a by-product of the presence of the Holy Spirit. (John 16:7-13, 14:16, 17; Acts 5:3-4; Romans 7:22-25; 1 Corinthians 2:12, 6:11; Galatians 5:25; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; 1 Peter 1:15-16).
- ABOUT HUMAN BEINGS People are made in the spiritual image of God, to be like Him in character. People are the supreme object of God’s creation. Although every person has tremendous potential for good, all of us are marred by an attitude of disobedience toward God called “sin”. This attitude separates people from God and causes many problems in life. (Genesis 1:26-27; Isaiah 59:1, 2; Romans 3:23, 7:15-21).
- ABOUT SALVATION
a. Conditions of Salvation
It is by the grace of God which brings salvation. It is available to all who call on the name of the Lord with repentance and remission of sins and by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Not by works of righteousness, but according to His mercy He saves us through the regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit and there is no other name under Heaven whereby one must be saved. (John 1:12; Titus 2:11; 3:5-7; Romans 5:8-9, 10:13-15; Luke 24:47; Ephesians 2:8-9; Acts 4:12; John 14:6; John 6:65).
b. Evidences of Salvation
The inward evidence to the believer of his salvation is the direct witness of the Spirit (Romans 8:16). The outward evidence to all men is a life of holiness and by the good fruit that is born. (1 Thessalonians; 4:7, 2 Timothy 1:9, John 14 & 15; Galatians 5:22-23; James 2:26).
- ABOUT MINISTRY
The universal church is the holy Body of Christ, a living spiritual body of which Christ is the head and each believer is a member. The local church consists of a company of believers in Jesus Christ, baptized on a credible profession of faith, and associated for worship, ministry, and fellowship. Divinely called and scripturally ordained ministry has been provided by our Lord for the church’s four-fold purpose: (1) Worship (2) Evangelism (3) Discipleship (4) Ministry. (Matthew 28:19-20; Ephesians 2:19-22; 4:11-13; 5:19-21 Acts 1:8; 2:42; Hebrews 10:23-25, Ephesians 4:11-13).
- ABOUT BAPTISM
Baptism is an act of obedience to the teachings of Jesus Christ and is a witness of salvation, not a part of salvation. The ordinance of baptism by burial with Christ should be observed (as commanded in the Scriptures) by all who have repented of their sins and in their hearts have believed on Christ as their Savior and Lord. In doing so, they declare to the world they have died with Christ and they have also been raised to walk with Him in newness of life. (Matthew 3:13-17, 28:18-20; Acts 2:38-41; Romans 6:4).
- ABOUT COMMUNION
Communion is a symbolic act of obedience whereby believers partake of bread and fruit of the vine in order to remember Jesus’ death and anticipate His second coming. This event is to be preceeded by a time of self examination and repentance. (John 6:48-57, 1 Corinthians 11:23-29).
- ABOUT THE BLESSED HOPE AND END TIMES
The resurrection of those who have fallen asleep in Jesus Christ, together with those who are alive and remain unto the Lord, is imminent and is the blessed hope of the Church. We, as promised in the Scriptures, look for the return of Jesus Christ from heaven; and a new heaven and a new earth wherein righteousness dwells. (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17; Titus 2:13; 1 Corinthians 15:51-52; 2 Peter 3:13; Revelation 21:1).
- ABOUT ETERNAL SECURITY
Because God gives us eternal life through Jesus Christ, the true believer is secure in that salvation for eternity. If you have been genuinely saved, you cannot “lose” it. Salvation is maintained by the grace and power of God, not by the self-effort of the Christian. It is the grace and keeping power of God that gives us this security. (John 10:27-29; 1 Peter 1:3-5; 1 John 5:11-13).
- ABOUT ETERNITY
People were created to exist forever. Because of personal choice, we will either exist eternally separated from God by sin, or eternally with God through forgiveness and salvation. To be eternally separated from God is Hell. To be eternally in union with Him is eternal life. Heaven and Hell are real places of eternal existence. (John 3:16; Romans 6:23; Revelation 20:15).
- MARRIAGE & FAMILY
We believe that marriage was ordained by God at creation as the sacred union of one man and one woman. All sexual relations must therefore be reserved for that union. Christian marriage is a representation of Christ’s relationship to His church. We also believe that children are a blessing from the Lord. Thus all human life is sacred and worthy of protection from the moment of conception. (Genesis 1:26-28; 2:24; Psalm 127 & 128; 139:13-16; Matthew 19:1-10; I Corinthians 6:9-11; Ephesians 5:22-33; Hebrew 13:4.)
Article V Values
- REVEALED TRUTH
We believe learning and applying God's authoritative Word is the catalyst for transformation in individuals' lives and in the Church. (2 Timothy 3:16).
- REACHING OUT
We believe unchurched people matter to God, and therefore ought to matter to the Church. (Luke 19:10).
We believe the Church should be culturally relevant while remaining doctrinally pure. (Philippians 2:4).
We believe loving others should permeate every aspect of Church life. (John 13:35).
We believe life-change happens best in Christ-centered small groups. (Acts 20:20).
We believe in honoring and loving Almighty God through authentic worship and prayer. (John 4:23-24).
We believe in spiritually multiplying ourselves by developing godly servant-leaders and churches for the cause of Jesus Christ. (Matthew 28:19-20).
We believe in operating as a unified community of servants stewarding our spiritual and physical gifts, affirming every believer as a gifted minister. (Romans 12:4-5).
- RESPECT FOR QUALITY
We believe excellence honors God and inspires people. Jesus Christ deserves our best and so do those who need to hear His message. (Psalm 8:9).
We believe growth means change and a willingness to develop new ways to minister to an ever changing world with the changeless Gospel of Jesus Christ (Hebrews 11:6).
Article VI Ordinances
- BAPTISM BY IMMERSION
The ordinance of baptism by immersion (Matthew 28:19) shall be administered by all established places of worship to all those who have repented of their sins and who have believed on the Lord Jesus Christ to the saving of their souls. (Romans 6:3-5; Colossians 2:12).
- THE LORD’S SUPPER
The ordinance of the Lord’s Supper shall be observed regularly by all established places of worship, as enjoined in the Scriptures. (Luke 22:19-20; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26).
Article VII Government
The function of the Officers is to represent the Church in legal or corporate matters.
- The President shall be the Senior Pastor.
- The Vice President shall be an Associate Pastor.
- There shall be a Secretary.
- There shall be a Treasurer.
- Other officers shall be added as needed.
The function of the Leadership is to oversee the daily operations of the Church. CrossRoads Community Church is an Elder-led, Staff-run, and Lay-powered church.
- ELDERS are spiritual overseers who have the final authority under Jesus Christ for the direction, doctrine, discipleship, and discipline of the body. (Hebrews 13:17). Such authority is expressed in servant leadership rather than acting as “lord” over those in the congregation. (1 Peter 5:2-3).
- TRUSTEES enable the Elders to more earnestly give themselves “continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word.” (Acts 6:4). They provide administrative oversight for the business aspects of the Church.
- STAFF are paid and unpaid ministry leaders. They are dedicated to lead, encourage, develop and equip the body of believers to fulfill the work of the ministry. Although we believe all members are called to ministry, the Church staff forms a uniquely gifted team responsible for the execution of key Church ministries and programs. (Ephesians 4:11-13).
- COMMUNITY GROUP LEADERS serve as “lay pastors” by connecting members to the personal care network of small group ministry. These critically important leaders nurture personal relationships, identify and meet needs, foster community outreach and conduct biblical teaching and training. (Acts 2:42-47, 1 Timothy 3:8-13).
- MINISTRY LEADERS are dedicated leaders who work with individual members to pursue excellence within their respective ministry area. They manage resources, train people, and create and develop new ministry ideas and programs. (Colossians 3:23-24).
- TEACHERS strive to rightly divide and share the Word of God with others. These devoted members work hard to apply the Holy Scriptures, in a relevent way, to the lives of those they teach. They foster Christian maturity and growth . (1 Timothy 1:5).
- DECISION-MAKING PROCESS
This process is used for major decisions, including but not limited to land, buildings, budgets, and staff. The decision-making process can originate from the Elders, Trustees, or Members.
If there are fewer than five (5) Elders, the Trustees will work in conjunction with the Elders on each of these steps.
Five (5) or more Elders
Fewer than five (5) Elders
The Elders seek God’s guidance.
The Elders and Trustees seek God’s guidance.
The Elders’ set the Direction
The Elders and Trustees set the Direction
The Elders present their direction to the Members.
The Elders and Trustees present their direction to the Members.
Any member concerns will be considered prior to the Elders’ final decision.
Any member concerns will be considered prior to the Elders’ and Trustees’ final decision.
The Elders’ decision is communicated to the members.
The Elders’ and Trustees’ decision is communicated to the members.
The Staff, Ministry Leaders, Trustees, Community Group Leaders, and Teachers implement the Elders’ decisions accordingly.
- SENIOR PASTOR
The Senior Pastor shall have been saved at least ten (10) years and shall have wisdom in handling the church’s affairs. He shall be sound in doctrine and apt to make good judgment. He must also cooperate and listen to advice given by the Body of Christ.
- The Senior Pastor shall be the head of the entire Church as provided by the Holy Scriptures.
- The Senior Pastor shall be the chairing member of the Board of Elders and preside over all corporate meetings.
- The Senior Pastor will equip the saints through preaching, teaching of the word and prayer
- MANNER OF APPOINTMENT
In the event of death or resignation of the Senior Pastor, the Elders shall seek God’s direction and install a new Senior Pastor.
- TERM OF OFFICE
The term of the Senior Pastor’s office shall be for an indefinite period of time unless led by God to resign.
The Elder shall have been saved at least ten (10) years and shall have wisdom in handling the Church’s affairs. He shall be sound in doctrine and apt to make good judgment. He must also cooperate and listen to advice given by the Church.
- The Elder shall lead, manage, and direct the Church. (1 Peter 5:3).
- The Elder shall be a member of the Board of Elders.
- The Elder shall teach and exhort. (1 Timonthy 3:5).
- The Elder shall refute those that contradict truth. (Titus 1:9).
- MANNER OF APPOINTMENT
The Board of Elders shall seek God’s direction and by unanimous vote install an Elder. If there are fewer than five (5) Elders, the Trustees must approve any new appointments by two-thirds majority.
- TERM OF OFFICE
The term of the Elder’s office shall be for an indefinite period of time.
- Candidate should exhibit high degree of confidentiality.
- Candidate should possess experience or skill set applicable to trustee duties.
- Must be a member in good standing i.e. regular attender for at least 1-yr., giver, community group member, serving today, etc…
- The individual must have a level of Christian maturity appropriate for the position as a Trustee.
- To provide administrative oversight for the business aspects of the church, including but not limited to the following: Budget & Expenditures, Staffing, Land Development, and/or Building projects.
- Meeting attendance is paramount.
- MANNER OF APPOINTMENT
- Candidate may be solicited or volunteer using the Trustee Application.
- Nomination must be accepted by the sitting Trustees and Elders.
- Candidate must be interviewed by sitting trustees.
- Approval is by a majority vote of the Trustees.
- TERM OF OFFICE
- Trustees have a three (3) calendar year term, except for the Treasurer who is a permanent member of the Trustees, unless led by God to resign.
- A former Trustee can rejoin after one (1) year off.
- MINISTRIES AND TEAMS
There shall (as the occasion may demand) be operational ministries and teams appointed by the Board of Elders or Trustees to serve in the capacity of expediting the work of the Church.
In each established place of worship the Senior Pastor will appoint a pastor to govern the affairs of said place of worship. The appointed pastor will give account to the Senior Pastor of the Church concerning every aspect of the established place of worship.
Article VIII Church Membership
New members enter into a relationship with the Church which is defined by a covenant of membership. A member is a person who acknowledges Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior, who agrees with the Core Beliefs and Values of the Church; who desires to help further the vision and purposes for which the Church was organized; and who is willing to work and to contribute time, money, and resources for the spreading of Christ’s kingdom through this Church. Membership is by request, with applications received, and approved by the Board of Elders, and affirmed by the congregation. (1 Corinthians 12; Hebrews 10:25).
The requirements for becoming a member of this Church are as follows:
- One must publicly confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior in accordance with Romans 10:9 of the Holy Scriptures.
- One who has been publicly baptized by immersion as a Believer.
- One must be a faithful attendee of this Church
- One must attend the Discovering Church Membership class or equivalent.
- One should purpose to live a life pleasing to the Lord as found throughout the Holy Scriptures.
- One has completed the Request for Membership in CrossRoads Community Church form and has had it reviewed by the Senior Pastor and/or Elders.
- One must be a faithful steward of this Church and work for the spreading of His kingdom through this Church and contribute time and money for this purpose.
- One has committed to join a Community Group.
- All members must agree to follow the constitution and policies of the Church. He/she may be subject to discipline by the Board of Elders if he/she violates the constitution and policies of the Church, or if his/her life is found to be contrary to that of the Bible.
- No member (except the Board of Elders) has the right to govern any of the internal affairs of the Church unless the Board of Elders has given such authority.
Article X Finances
- SOURCE OF FUNDS
The Church shall be financed by the freewill offerings of members and friends of the Church, by the established places of worship, by all other subordinate groups affiliated with the Church and by fund raisers that are recognized by the Senior Pastor and Board of Elders (1 Chronicles 29:6-9; 2 Chronicles 24:10; 31:10).
- FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT
All funds and assets of the Church shall be managed with absolute integrity, with sufficient internal checks and balances, and according to generally accepted accounting principles and Church policies.
The Trustees provide administrative oversight for the business aspects of the church.
Article XI Property Rights
- All property, real or chattel, shall be taken, held, sold, transferred or conveyed in the Church’s name.
- No real or chattel property of the Church shall be sold, leased, mortgaged, or otherwise alienated without authorization and approval by the Board of Elders and Trustees.
- The Senior Pastor of the Church shall certify such conveyances, leases, or mortgages. In the event the Church ceases to exist, all assets of the Church, less liabilities, shall (at the discretion of the Board of Elders) be given to the organization(s) of their choice that are exempt as described in section 501(c)(3) and or 170(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue code of 1986. No individual, including the Senior Pastor, shall derive any benefit from such distribution of assets.
Article XII Meetings
- CHURCH SERVICES
In each established place of worship the appointed pastor will be responsible for regular Church services.
- CHURCH MEETINGS
Church meetings will be called as necessary by the Senior Pastor or Board of Elders.
- BOARD OF ELDERS MEETINGS
- The purpose of the Board of Elders meetings is to discuss and decide on the direction of the Church.
- Any Elder can call a Board of Elders meeting and shall set the dates and times by notifying the Board of Elders verbally or in writing with a minimum of 24 hours notice.
- A minimum of two-thirds of Elders including the Senior Pastor shall be present for a Board of Elders meeting for a quorum to exist.
- The Board of Elders may have invited guests present at any meeting so long as the Senior Pastor has approved it.
- An Elder shall recuse himself from all matters where there is a personal conflict or consequence.
- The Secretary shall keep an accurate account of the minutes that were discussed at any Board of Elders meeting. He/she then has to submit them at the next Board of Elders meeting for discussion and approval by the Elders and Senior Pastor. Upon approval, the minutes shall be adopted, and all policy and procedures in them will be implemented.
Article XIII Discipline
Should any Elder of this Church be found flagrantly negligent in living the Christian life, the Church reserves the right to administer Scriptural forms of Church discipline, as outlined in Matthew 18:15-18 and 1 Timothy 5:19-20.
- CHURCH MEMBERS
Should any member of this Church be found to be flagrantly negligent in living the Christian life, the Church reserves the right to administer Scriptural forms of Church discipline, as outlined in Matthew 18:15-18.
Article XIIII Amendments
Amendments to this constitution may be made by a unanimous vote of the Board of Elders, following the decision-making process specified in the Article VII.