Each church offers unique qualities,
and these characteristics need to
be communicated clearly in statements of policy and doctrine. This
allows for a successful match between church and individual, eliminates
confusion, and protects against disharmony and dissatisfaction in the
To be effective and active members in a church, individuals need to know
exactly what is offered to them, and what is expected from them. These
letters will help you achieve these ends.
12-1 / To Groups about Availability of Special Services: Nursery
We are looking forward to your congregation joining us for the community
Thanksgiving service to be held on Wednesday, MONTH XX, at 7:30 PM
For your convenience, during the service we will be operating both a
nursery for babies under the age of two and one for toddlers ages two
through five. Each will be staffed by Community Church nursery workers.
We hope you will feel free to make use of them.
Thank you, and we anticipate a meaningful joint service as we unite to
show our gratitude to our great God.
12-2 / To Groups about Building & Key Use Rules
An established set of guidelines for outsiders who use the church or
synagogue is helpful to have in writing. While this example has a
cordial tone, it is also clear in exactly what is expected.
Thank you for your recent request to use the church building on DAY,
MONTH XX, 200X, for a craft bazaar to take place between the hours of
10:00 AM and 5:00 PM We are happy to grant you permission to do so,
under the following conditions:
- No smoking in the church.
- Unused areas of the building are to be roped off so that no one goes
- Food and drinks are not to be taken outside of Fellowship Hall.
- A certificate of liability insurance must be filed.
- A fee of $00.00 will be charged to pay for the extra custodian work.
- No one will be permitted in the church before 8:00 AM or after 7:00 PM
on the day of the bazaar.
We would appreciate your cooperation in these matters. May you have
great success in your endeavor.
12-3 / To Groups about Church Position on Issues: Nuclear Arms Race
From time to time, issues arise in society that require a clear response
by the local church. This helps to clarify for members the appropriate
biblical stand and seeks to engage them in the issue as responsible
citizens. This letter is an example of one approach.
In light of the current debate about the nuclear arms race in the
denomination, we would like to present to you the enclosed proposed
resolution reflecting the view of our congregation.
Whereas, as Christians, we believe in peace which brings real freedom to
persons of every nation; and
Whereas, as citizens of the Kingdom of God as well as of the United
States of America, we pledge proper loyalty to both; and
Whereas, our government, having received God’s blessing, has served us
well over the years of its existence; and
Whereas, the U.S. Constitution provides separation of church and state;
Whereas, the President of this country, congressional representatives,
and other elected and appointed officials have the responsibility of
providing security and common defense of the United States, as well as
the mandate to work for world peace; and
Whereas, the Soviet Union persists in expanding nuclear, strategic, and
conventional military forces, the U.S. has the clear responsibility to
maintain peace and freedom by deterring such actions; and
Whereas, it is not in the best interests of this nation to have a
comprehensive test ban treaty, as long as there is need for nuclear
deterrence, thereby requiring a structured test pro gram which will
ensure the safety, reliability, and effectiveness of such weapons; and
Whereas, the government has the resources, intelligence, and scientific
knowledge avail able to it, as well as the best interests of and the
information concerning the mindset and activities of the U.S.; and
Whereas, we have both the opportunity and the responsibility to pray for
our government officials as they fulfill their obligations to strive for
Therefore, be it resolved that Community Church of CITY, STATE commends
the President, Congress, and other officials for steps they have taken,
as well as will take, to pursue peace through nuclear arms reduction
agreements, a test ban treaty, etc., to assure U.S. security and that of
the rest of the free world, with the objectives of achieving peace and
freedom for people everywhere. Further, be it resolved that as members
of this Body and of this nation, we vow to renew our commitment to Jesus
Christ and to the United States, lifting up our leaders to God each day
We trust that you will take into account our sentiments. Thank you.
12-4 / To Groups about Job Descriptions for Volunteer Staff: Sunday
Greetings in the name of the Lord to all Sunday school teachers!
As another year begins, we are looking forward to new opportunities as
we strive to bring our students into a closer walk with God. For the
benefit of those who have recently accepted their positions, as well as
to remind those who have held them for a while, here is your job
1. In both your teaching and your personal life, you are to radiate
Jesus, so as to minister to the needs of each of your students.
2. You are to attend the monthly teachers’ meetings with the pastor.
3. You are to be at the teachers’ workshops, which will be tentatively
held in early MONTH and MONTH.
4. You are to visit each student in his/her home at least once during
the fall quarter.
5. You are to commit yourself to spending adequate time to prepare your
lesson each week so that the presentation of it will go as smoothly as
6. You are to use as many visual aids, attention devices such as
puppets, drama, etc. as possible in order to make your lesson as
interesting as you can.
7. Orders for curriculum must be into the superintendent by the first of
the month preceding the month the material is needed.
8. If you know you cannot teach on a specific Sunday, you are to find a
substitute and contact the pastor a week in advance. If unexpected
circumstances arise, please notify him as early as possible. Your
students are counting on you being present!
Thank you for your cooperation in these matters. I am certain that by
working together, we will see a year of great personal growth, both for
ourselves and for our students.
12-5 / To Individuals about Accountability: Of Staff
In answer to your inquiry, the following should clarify our position:
An associate pastor at Community Church is to be accountable to the
senior pastor in consultation with the Church Council. He/she shall be
elected by the vote of the congregation, with the call to be approved by
the district office.
The pastoral relationship between the associate pastor and the church
may only be dissolved by the district. He/she may request such action
and must also state his/her intention to the Church Council, who will
then call a congregational meeting to act on the request. If the
congregation and the pastor agree, the district will so move. In cases
in which the congregation does not want the dissolution, it may state
its case to the district, who will rule one way or the other. Should the
congregation wish to dissolve the pastoral relationship, a similar
process will be followed.
To summarize, the associate pastor is directly responsible to the senior
pastor, in cooperation with the Church Council and the District office.
If you have further questions, feel free to contact my office.
12-6 / To Individuals about Membership Requirements
This fairly informal letter concisely lists the membership requirements
in an easy to follow format.
Thank you for your interest in investigating joining Community Church.
We have the following membership requirements:
At least ten years of age, evidence of having personally asked Jesus
Christ to be Lord and Savior, baptized by water, evidence of living a
godly life style, participate in membership classes led by the pastor,
and upon their completion, have a private conference with him.
If you feel you can meet these criteria, please contact my office for
information about the date of the next series of membership classes.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
12-7 / To Individuals about Qualifications for Volunteers: Sunday School
Thank you for your recent inquiry about the possibility of teaching
Sunday school. We have the following qualifications:
- Member of the church,
- Regular attendance of Sunday school for at least the past year,
- Attend the basic teacher training seminar and then go to the teachers’
workshop scheduled several times a year,
- Agree to be at monthly teachers’ meetings held with the pastor,
demonstrate a love for the age you will be teaching, be of the highest
moral character, living a life style consistent with Biblical standards.
If you feel you can meet these requirements, please contact my office.
We are constantly looking for dedicated individuals willing to commit
themselves to teaching in our Christian education department.
12-8 / To Individuals about Staff Absences
For your information, the revised policy of staff absences is as
1. Absences due to a death in the immediate family (defined as spouse,
child, parent, or other member of household) will result in up to one
week’s paid leave.
2. Absences due to a death of a relative other than immediate family
will result in up to three day’s paid time off.
3. If an employee is called for jury or witness duty, he/she will be
paid for the time off and is permitted to keep any compensation received
for such duty. However, if such duty does not require the entire day,
the employee is expected to report to the church for work during the
remaining hours of the workday.
4. Absences for personal business are permitted if approved by the
department head in advance. A maximum of three such days per year will
5. In the case of personal illness, an employee has up to ten days sick
leave per year. The church office should be notified prior to 8:30 AM on
the first day of such absences, as well as on each succeeding day the
illness continues. A doctor’s statement may be requested after the third
day off. In some cases of serious illness in the immediate family, the
supervisor may classify it as personal illness.
6. Leaves of absence will be granted if recommended by the department
head and approved by the senior pastor.
Absences, as much as possible, are to be reported in advance to the
department head. A week’s notice is preferred, but a minimum of 48 hours
is strongly suggested. Unexcused absences will be dealt with by the
senior pastor first, then referred to the Personnel Committee of the
Session if needed, and finally handled by the Session itself if there
are further problems. I hope this is clear to you. If you have any
questions, feel free to ask.
12-9 / To Individuals about Statement of Doctrine
Enclosed you will find Community Church’s Statement of Doctrine.
Statement of Doctrine
1. The Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God. It is truth
untarnished by any degree of error, it will endure forever, and it is
the standard by which all conduct, creeds, and opinions are to be tried.
2. There is one God, the Maker of Heaven and Earth, holy and just, Who
is expressed in three equal Persons, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
3. Man was made in holiness but, by his choice, fell into sin, thus
resulting in a sinful nature of all, in that each voluntarily go astray
and are therefore under condemnation to eternal separation from God.
4. God has graciously provided a way out through His Son, who freely
took on human nature, was born of a Virgin, lived tempted in all manner
of sin, but remained sinless and died for our transgressions. He rose
from the dead and is now enthroned in Heaven.
5. In order to be saved, sinners must personally invite Jesus Christ
into their hearts, repenting of their sins and intending to walk in
newness of life with the help of God.
6. The Christian who has thus experienced salvation is to persist in
personal prayer and Bible study, freely sharing the faith with those
around him/her, regularly fellowshipping in a Bible-believing church,
and participating in every sort of good work for the advancement of the
kingdom of God.
7. In obedience to the Word of God, a believer is to undergo the
Sacrament of Baptism, symbolizing the death of the old man and the birth
of the new in Christ. The Sacrament of Communion, by which the members
partake of the bread and wine in memory of Jesus and His atoning work on
the cross, is to be celebrated on a regular basis.
8. The end of the age is approaching, and with it, the personal return
of Jesus Christ, the bodily resurrection of the just and the unjust, the
everlasting blessedness of the redeemed, and the everlasting torment of
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact my office.