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CSL ByLaws

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The Church of Spiritual Life NSAC

Table of Contents

Article I  Name – Charter – Seal ……………………………………………………………………………………… 4

Section 1. Name. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 4

Section 2. Charter ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 4

Section 3. Seal ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 4

Article II Object and Governing Statute ……………………………………………………………………………  4

Section 1. Object ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 4

Section 2. Governing Statute ……………………………………………………………………………………….. 4

Article III Membership …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

Section 1. Member Classifications ………………………………………………………………………………… 5

Section 2. Member Criteria. …………………………………………………………………………………………. 5

Section 3. Junior Member ……………………………………………………………………………………………. 5

Section 4. Honorary Member ……………………………………………………………………………………….. 6

Section 5. Member in Good Standing ……………………………………………………………………………. 6

Section 6. Annual Dues ……………………………………………………………………………………………….. 6

Section 7. Transfer/Withdrawal ……………………………………………………………………………………. 6

Section 8. Delinquent Membership. ………………………………………………………………………………. 6

Section 9. Reinstatement of Membership……………………………………………………………………….. 6

Article IV Board of Trustees……………………………………………………………………………………………. 7

Section 1. Composition of the Board of Trustees ……………………………………………………………. 7 Section 2. Election Groups ………………………………………………………………………………………….. 7

Section 3. Board Eligibility ………………………………………………………………………………………….. 7

Section 4. Transfer of Records, Keys, and Properties ……………………………………………………… 7

Section 5. Board Attendance ………………………………………………………………………………………… 7

Section 6. Vacancies……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 7

Section 7. Dismissal. …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 8

Section 8. Resignation. ………………………………………………………………………………………………. .8

Section 9. Duties……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. .8

Section 10. Board Meetings ……………………………………………………………………………………….. .9

Section 11. Quorum ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. .9

Section 12. Access to Membership Information. …………………………………………………………… .9

Article V Officers ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 10

Section 1. President …………………………………………………………………………………………………….10

Section 2. Vice President……………………………………………………………………………………………. 10

Section 3. Secretary …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 10

Section 4. Treasurer ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 11

Article VI Membership Meeting ……………………………………………………………………………………. 12

Section 1. Annual Membership Meeting ……………………………………………………………………… 12

Section 2. Biannual Membership Meeting …………………………………………………………………….. 12 Section 3. Special Meetings ………………………………………………………………………………………… 12

   Section 4. Order of Business. ………………………………………………………………………………………. 12

   Section 5.  Notifications……………………….……………………………………………….13

   Section 6.  Elections……………………………………………………………………………14

   Section 7.  Absentee Voting……………………………………………………………………14

Section 8. Quorum …………………………………………………………………………………………………….14

Article VII Committees …………………………………………………………………………………………………14

Section 1. Committees ……………………………………………………………………………………………….14

Section 2. Committee Chairpersons ……………………………………………………………………………..15

Section 3. Reports……………………………………………………………………………………………………….16

Article VIII Pastor and Platform Workers ………………………………………………………………………..16

Section 1. Eligibility of the Pastor……………………………………………………………………………….. 16

Section 2. Eligibility of the Pastoral Committee Chairperson…………………………………16

Section 3. Duties of the Pastor ……………………………………………………………………………………. 17

Section 4. Removal of the Pastor/Co-Pastor ………………………………………………….17

Section 5. Eligibility of Platform Workers …………………………………………………………………… 17

Section 6. Platform Code of Conduct ………………………………………………………………………….. 18

Article IX Complaints ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 18

Section 1. Complaint Procedure ………………………………………………………………………………….. 18

Article X Parliamentary Authority …………………………………………………………………………………. 18

Section 1. Parliamentary Authority ……………………………………………………………………………… 18

Section 2. Parliamentarian …………………………………………………………………………………………. 18

Article XI Inactivity …………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 19

Section 1. Inactivity ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 19 Section 2. Defunct …………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 19

Section 3. Dissolution………………………………………………………………………………………………… 20

Article XII Amendments ………………………………………………………………………………………………. 20

Section 1. Amendments of Bylaws …………………………………………………………………………… .. 20

Section 2. Filing and Notice of Amendment …………………………………………………………………. 20

Section 3. Effective Date of Amendments ……………………………………………………………………. 20

Adopted Bylaw Amendments ………………………………………………………………………………………… 20

November 28, 2004 …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 20

November 13, 2010 …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 20

May 19, 2013 …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 20

November 10, 2013 …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 22 May 18, 2014 …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 23

November  11, 2018………………………………………………………………………….. 24

Article I Name – Charter – Seal

Section 1. Name. The name of this Society is The Church of Spiritual Life, NSAC, duly incorporated under the religious non-profit laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. In these Bylaws, The Church of Spiritual Life, NSAC, shall be referred to as the “Society”.

Section 2. Charter. This Society shall hold a charter from the National Spiritualist Association of Churches (NSAC).

Section 3. Seal. The official seal of this Society shall be circular in form, two inches in diameter with a sunflower design and date of incorporation in the center, with the words The Church of Spiritual Life appearing around the outer edge. An imprint of the seal shall appear on the cover of these Bylaws.

Article II Object and Governing Statute

Section 1. Object. The object of this Society is to hold services, meetings and classes for the promulgation of the Science, Philosophy, and Religion of Spiritualism in accordance with the Bylaws of the National Spiritualist Association of Churches of the United States of America, a Hierarchical Religious Society incorporated under the laws of the District of Columbia, and to encourage all interested people to unfold their Spiritual gifts.

Section 2. Governing Statute. This Society is subject to the Bylaws of the National Spiritualist Association of Churches, a Hierarchical Religious Society incorporated under the laws of the District of Columbia, to the extent that this Society’s Bylaws may not be inconsistent with the laws of the United States or the State of New Hampshire.

Section 3. Jurisdiction. These Bylaws shall be the Supreme Law of this Society and shall govern all matters relative to all Members and subsidiary organizations, when not contrary to the laws of the United States, the State of New Hampshire, or to the Bylaws of the National Spiritualist Association of Churches.

Section 4. Freedom in Framing Bylaws. This Society shall have the utmost freedom in framing its Bylaws. All practices, acts, rules, and customs contrary to, or inconsistent with, any of the provisions of these Bylaws shall be null and void.

Section 5. Agreement to Incorporate. This Society further agrees on behalf of itself, its associates, and its successors, to incorporate this Society under the civil laws of the jurisdiction in which we are located, and that the Articles of Incorporation shall contain the statement appearing as Article IX, Sections 1A and 1B of the NSAC Bylaws.

Article III Membership

Section 1. Member Classifications. There shall be three (3) classes of Membership: Member, Junior, and Honorary Member.

Section 2. Member Criteria. A person may become a Member of this Society who:

  1. Is at least eighteen (18) years of age;
  • Is recommended by a Member of this Society;
  • Declares his/her acceptance and belief in the Science, Philosophy, and Religion of Modern Spiritualism;
  • Subscribes to the Declaration of Principles;
  • Attends six hours of classes to understand the Science, Philosophy, and Religion of Modern Spiritualism;
  • Attends services and supports, to the best of their ability, other activities of this Society;
  • Acknowledges proof of the continuity of life through satisfactory demonstration;
  • Completes and signs an application form prescribed by the NSAC; and
  1. Submits the required Membership dues.

Upon becoming a Member, the new Member shall be given an NSAC Spiritualist Manual and a copy of these Bylaws.

Section 3. Junior Member. A person may become a Junior Member of this Society who:

  1. Is age thirteen (13) through seventeen (17);
  • Has the permission of parent(s) or legal guardian;
  • Is recommended by a member of the Society; and
  • Completes and signs an application form prescribed by the NSAC.

A Junior Member shall have the right to attend Membership meetings with voice, but shall not have the right to vote or hold office. Upon becoming a Junior Member, the new Member will be given an NSAC Spiritualist Manual.

Section 4. Honorary Member. Honorary Membership shall be designated by a majority vote of the Board of Trustees, or of the Membership of the Society in a duly called meeting. An honorary member shall not have voice, vote, or any other privileges of membership other than the title of Honorary Member of the Society.

Section 5. Member in Good Standing. A Member in Good Standing is defined as being a

Member of the Society for a period of at least three (3) months, with any required dues of the Society being paid in full. Honorary and Junior Members are not to be added to the Society’s Membership list as reported to the NSAC, and do not pay NSAC assessment.

Section 6. Annual Dues. The amount and categories of the Annual Society Dues shall be set by a majority vote of the Board of Trustees. Annual Membership dues must be paid on or before January 1st of each year.

Section 7. Transfer/Withdrawal. For transfer or withdrawal of a Member in Good Standing to another NSAC society, the NSAC provides a uniform Transfer Form. No other form of transfer or withdrawal shall be recognized. The request for a transfer or withdrawal shall be in writing to the Secretary. Once a request for transfer has been received the Secretary shall immediately issue the transfer and record the action in the minutes of the next meeting of the Board of Trustees.

Section 8. Delinquent Membership. Any Member of this Society who has not paid their Annual Membership Dues for a period of three (3) months past the due date shall be notified in writing by the Secretary. When in arrears for a period of six (6) months, the member shall be notified in writing of being dropped from the Membership of this Society. Members whose dues are not paid in full are ineligible to vote until all dues are paid in full. Dues must be paid in full at least seven (7) days prior to the day on which voting will take place. Members who have not paid dues are ineligible to serve the public platform of this Society.

Section 9. Reinstatement of Membership. Any Member who is past due in the payment of Annual Membership Dues may be reinstated upon payment in full of all dues, and upon approval of the Board of Trustees or the members present in a duly called meeting.

Article IV Board of Trustees

Section 1. Composition of the Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees of this Society shall be comprised of a President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and Secretary, and who together with Three (3) Trustees shall be elected as hereafter provided and shall constitute a board of seven (7) Board Members.

Section 2. Election Groups. The Board of Trustees consisting of seven members will use the following election groups. 

  1. President, Vice President for a term of three (3) years;
  • Treasurer and two (2) Trustees for a term of three (3) years; and
  • Secretary and one (1) Trustees for a term of three (3) years.

Each of the above groups shall be elected for a term of three (3) years which shall begin on adjournment of the Annual Meeting at which they are elected.

Section 3. Board Eligibility. To be eligible for election to the Board of Trustees, a Member in Good Standing must have been a member for at least six (6) months.

Section 4. Transfer of Records, Keys, and Properties. The final duty of all outgoing Officers and Trustees of this Society shall be to deliver all records, keys, and properties of this Society, which are in their possession, to their newly elected successor at the close of the Annual Membership Meeting.

Section 5. Board Attendance. Should a Trustee be absent from three (3) scheduled monthly meetings of the Board of Trustees within a one-year period, the Board of Trustees, by a two- thirds (2/3) vote, may declare the position vacated and appoint a Trustee to fill the position until the next Annual Membership Meeting.

Section 6. Vacancies. When a vacancy occurs, for whatever reason, the Board of Trustees shall appoint a replacement until the next Annual, Biannual, or Special Membership Meeting. At which meeting a special election will be held to fill the vacancy for the remainder of the term.

Section 7. Dismissal. A member of the Board may be removed from office, for cause, by a two- thirds majority vote of all Board members. Every Board member, apart from the Board member under review, must either vote or abstain. Causes for dismissal include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. Gross negligence in the performance of his/her duties;
  2. Speech or actions which undermine the good reputation of the Church of Spiritual Life, the NSAC, or Spiritualism as a whole;
  • Mismanagement or misappropriation of church funds; or
  • Violent, intimidating, or abusive behavior toward any church member or guest.

Prior to dismissal proceedings, a formal complaint must be filed against the Board member under review. The Investigation Committee will have thirty (30) days to investigate the validity of the complaint. If the complaint is found to be valid, dismissal proceedings will be scheduled and announced. The Board member under review shall be afforded at least seven (7) days from the time they are notified of the dismissal proceedings to prepare their defense.

During the dismissal proceedings, the complaint will be read into the minutes, and the Board member under review will have the opportunity to present their defense.

If the Board votes to dismiss the Board member under review, the dismissal will take effect immediately.

Section 8. Resignation. A Board Member may resign at any time by giving written notice to the Secretary or President of the Board of Trustees. The notice shall be presented at the next Board meeting. Unless otherwise specified, the resignation shall be effective as of the date delivered. At the time of resignation, the departing Board member will deliver all records, keys, and properties of the Society.

Section 9. Duties. The Board of Trustees shall:

  1. Have the general management and control of all the business affairs and activities of the Society not otherwise provided for by the Bylaws or by vote of the Membership;
  • Have the authority in the interim between Membership meetings to consider and decide all questions affecting the business of the Society;
  • Appoint Committees as needed when not appointed by the President, per Article V, Section 1of these Bylaws;
  • Establish rules for its own guidance and for the guidance of all appointive officers; and
  • The Secretary may ask for an electric vote on issues bought before the board, in between monthly meetings.  All board members are to be notified and given an opportunity to vote.  The motion and the resulting response is to be recorded within the motion book and read at the next monthly meeting
  • Take no action contrary to, or inconsistent with the Bylaws of this Society, the Bylaws of the National Spiritualist Association of Churches, the laws of the State of New Hampshire, or the laws of the United States.
  • Section 10. Board Meetings. The Board of Trustees shall meet monthly on the third Sunday of the month unless another day of the month is set by a majority vote of the Board of Trustees.

The Secretary will make all reasonable efforts to notify the Members of the time and place of meetings of the Board of Trustees by announcement, mail, or electronic mail using the following schedule:

  1. At least fifteen (15) days prior to a regular meeting of the Board of Trustees.
  • At least seven (7) days prior to a special meeting of the Board of Trustees.
  • Emergency meetings may be called by a majority of Board Members, provided all Board Members are notified.

Section 11. Quorum. Five (5) Members of the Board of Trustees shall constitute a quorum.

Section 12. Access to Membership Information. Access to the personal information of the Society’s Membership including, but not limited to: names, addresses, telephone numbers, and electronic mail addresses, is limited to Officers of the Board, a designee of the Officers of the Board, the Pastor (if elected), and the Chair of the Pastoral Committee. This information is to be considered confidential and shall not be released to anyone without the knowledge and approval of the Board.

Article V Officers

Officers of this Society shall be a President, a Vice-President, a Secretary, and a Treasurer.

Section 1. President. The President shall:

  1. Preside at all meetings of the Society and meetings of the Board of Trustees;
  • Have general supervision over the Officers, Trustees, and the business affairs of the Society;
  • Countersign any legal instruments as required and/or approved by the Board of Trustees;
  • Authorize payment of bills against the Society. Obtain separate approval from the Board of Trustees for each non-routine payment in excess of $250;
  • Present a written report to each Annual Membership Meeting of the Society to cover the activities of his/her office, review the condition of the status of the Society and make recommendations for its advancement; and
  • Give bond for the faithful performance of duties in such amount, conditions, and sureties as the Board of Trustees may direct.

Section 2. Vice President. The Vice-President shall:

  1. Perform all duties of the President in the absence of the President, through death, removal, or disability of the President; and
  • Perform such further duties as the Board of Trustees may require.

Section 3. Secretary. The Secretary, or a Committee designated by the Secretary, shall:

  1. Receive and send all correspondence of the Society and be the custodian of the mailbox key;
  • Notify Members of the Society of meetings of the Membership and the Board of Trustees in accordance with Article IV of these Bylaws;
  • Prepare and keep on file all records of the Society, including an accurate list of Members and their status;
  • Sign and affix the seal to any and all legal documents as required, or by direction of the Board of Trustees;
  • Be the custodian of the charter and the seal;
  • Perform such further duties as said Board of Trustees may require;
  • Keep the minutes of all meetings. Minutes are intended to be a summary of the proceedings of the meeting, and not a full transcript. Minutes may be typed or handwritten, provided that the finalized and approved minutes are legible and stored in paper format, in duplicate, one copy stored in a locked cabinet at the church and one copy stored in an authorized off-site location. Approved minutes are to be retained for seven (7) years. Audio recordings of the proceedings of meetings shall be collected and filed with the approved minutes from the meeting in a format which can be accessed for seven (7) years; and
  • Distribute minutes to the Board Members for their review at least seven (7) days prior to the next Board meeting.

Section 4. Treasurer. The Treasurer shall:

  1. Be responsible for receipt of monies or evidence of such monies, keeping an accurate account;
  • Pay bills against the Society upon authorization of the President;
  • Furnish a financial statement, including a Statement of Financial Position (Balance Sheet), and a Statement of Revenue and Expenditures (Profit and Loss Statement) whenever requested by the President or three (3) Members of the Board of Trustees;
  • Make a full written report at Board, Annual and Biannual Membership Meetings setting forth the conditions of the Society’s funds, the nature and extent of the investments, income, and disbursements;
  • Give bond for the faithful performance of duties in such amount, conditions and sureties as the Board of Trustees may direct; and
  • At the direction of the Board of Trustees, maintain a special building fund account for the purpose of investment in a church building fund, land or property to hold church services and other functions of the church. This account will be advertised as a building fund and anyone can contribute to this fund. This fund can only be used as a building fund for the purchase of property, furnishing of such facilities and other related building expenses. Any interest accrued on the building fund account will remain part of the account. Any other use of this fund must be approved by the Board of Trustees first and then by the Membership at a Membership Meeting or Special Membership Meeting.

Article VI Membership Meeting

Section 1. Annual Membership Meeting. An annual meeting of the Membership shall be held at the designated location of the Society on the third Sunday of the month of May after the regularly scheduled Sunday service. If the third Sunday falls on Mother’s Day, the meeting will be moved to the second Sunday.

Section 2. Biannual Membership Meeting. A biannual meeting of the Membership shall be held at the designated location of the Society on the second Sunday of November after the regularly scheduled service.

Section 3. Special Meetings. Special Membership Meetings may be called by the President and at least three (3) other Trustees, or upon written request of five (5) Members in Good Standing.

Section 4. Order of Business. At all Membership Meetings, the following shall be the order of business:

Membership Sign-In

Distribution of Approved Agenda and Minutes of the Previous Meeting

Call to Order

Invocation

Roll Call

Determination of Quorum

Secretary’s Report: Reading of the Minutes of the Previous Meeting Treasurer’s Report

President’s Report

Vice-President’s Report

Reports of Pastor and/or Pastoral Committee

Reports of Other Committees

Unfinished Business

New Business

Election of Trustees and Officers

Election of Pastor and/or Pastoral Committee

Election of NSAC Delegates

Remarks for the Good of the Society

Benediction

Adjournment

Section 5. Notifications. The Secretary will make all reasonable efforts to notify the Members of the time, place, and purpose of meetings of the Membership by general announcement, mail, or electronic mail according to the following schedule:

  1. At least fifteen (15) days prior to the Annual Membership Meeting;
  • At least fifteen (15) days prior to the Biannual Membership Meeting; and
  • At least ten (10) days prior to a Special Membership Meeting.

Section 6. Elections. Solicitations for candidates for vacant positions on the Board of Trustees, Pastor and Co-Pastor (candidates), will be made by the Nominating Committee at least sixty (60) days prior the election; candidates shall notify the Nominating Committee in writing within fifteen (15) days of their acceptance. The Nominating Committee will notify the Board of Trustees of the candidates 45 days prior to the election.

Upon receipt of the names of the candidates running for vacant/contested positions the Nominating Committee shall notify the Membership of which candidates are running for which positions. The Secretary will make all reasonable efforts to notify the entire Membership of the Society, by general announcement, written posting mail, or electronic mail, of the time and place of the elections at least thirty (30) days prior to the elections.

A roll call shall be taken and the eligibility of each member’s right to vote shall be verified before proceeding to elections. As ballots are submitted, the Secretary will ensure that only one ballot is submitted per member in good standing. Completed ballots will be retained for a period of not less than one (1) year.

Section 7. Absentee Voting. Members who cannot physically be present at the Annual Membership Meeting may choose to submit their vote in absentia via mail. To be valid, the member must notify the Secretary of their intent to vote in absentia at least seven (7) days prior to the election. The Secretary will then provide the member with an absentee ballot. To be counted, the member’s completed absentee ballot must be returned in a sealed envelope to the Secretary at least 24 hours before the start of the Annual Membership Meeting. The absentee ballots will remain sealed until the Annual Membership Meeting. At the Annual Meeting, the Secretary will open the absentee ballots in front of the membership during the election process, and will ensure the absentee ballots are added to the voting totals.

Section 8. Quorum. A quorum of thirty percent (30%) of the Members of the Society, including a majority of the Board of Trustees, in attendance at any Membership Meeting shall constitute a quorum. The Secretary shall appoint a Member in Good Standing to monitor quorum. Members must sign-in and sign-out as they join or leave the meeting. Quorum must be maintained throughout the proceedings in order for the business conducted during the meeting to be considered valid.

Article VII Committees

Section 1. Committees. Committees must be composed of at least three (3) Members in Good Standing. If a Committee falls below three (3) Members, the Board of Trustees shall appoint replacement Members as necessary. The President may appoint, with the approval of the Board of Trustees, the following committees:

  1. Auditing. The function and duty of the Auditing Committee shall be to audit the books and accounts of the Society, independent of the Board of Trustees, and shall report its findings at each Annual Meeting directly to the Membership.
  • Literature/Library. The chairperson of the committee shall be known as the “Society Librarian.” The duties of the committee shall be to catalog and maintain the Society’s library, to loan books to authorized persons, and such other duties as may be directed by the Board of Trustees.
  • Sunshine/Get Well. It shall be the duty and function of the Sunshine Committee to visit Society Members in need of healing and to carry out other projects of communicating with Members and friends of the Society.
  • Public Relations. It shall be the duty and function of the Public Relations Committee to produce public relations projects and other promotional items for the Society subject to review by the Pastor, Co-Pastor, or Pastoral Committee and the Board of Trustees.
  • Investigation. The duty and function of the Investigation Committee shall be to investigate the written complaints submitted to the Board of Trustees in accordance with NSAC Disciplinary Procedure.
  • Nominating. The duty and function of the Nominating Committee shall be to identify and solicit qualified candidates for nomination to Board, Pastor, Co-Pastor, and Pastoral Committee vacancies, publicize candidates running for vacancies, and place in nomination names of those candidates at election meetings. The Nominating Committee shall:
  1. Not contain Members of the Board of Trustees, or anyone running for any elected position;
  • Be composed of at least three (3) Members in Good Standing;
  • Be organized at least sixty (60) days prior to the date when elections are to be held; and
  • Deliver the names of the nominees to the Board of Trustees at least forty-five (45) days prior to the date when elections are to be held.
  • Other Committees as circumstances may deem necessary.

Section 2. Committee Chairpersons. Whenever possible, Members of the Board of Trustees shall serve on, or be named Board Liaison to, each Committee and initiate contact with Committee Chairpersons on a regular basis.

Section 3. Reports. All committees, thirty (30) days prior to the Annual Membership Meeting, shall file with the Board of Trustees a written report on their activities for the past year (no more than three hundred words).

Article VIII Pastor and Platform Workers

Section 1. Eligibility of the Pastor. 

A person who is a member in good standing of the Society and has obtained certification as a NSAC Ordained Minister, a National Spiritualist Teacher, or Licentiate Minister may be elected by the members at an Annual Membership Meeting to the position of Pastor of this Society for the period of one (1) year. 

In the absence of an elected Pastor, a Pastoral Committee Chairperson may be elected by the members at an Annual Membership Meeting to fulfill the duties of pastor. The Pastoral Committee shall consist of not less than three nor more than five members in good standing of the Society, who shall serve for a period one (1) year.

Section 2.  Eligibility of the Pastoral Committee Chairperson.

A person who is a member in good standing of the Society and has or is currently pursuing a NSAC Ordained Minister, a National Spiritualist Teacher, or Licentiate Minister credential may be elected by the members at an Annual Membership Meeting to the position of Pastoral Committee Chairperson for a period of one (1) year.

In the absence of a member in good standing of the Society having or is currently pursuing a NSAC Ordained Minister, a National Spiritualist Teacher, or Licentiate Minister credential, a Pastoral Committee Chairperson can be nominated for the Pastoral Committee Chairperson pending Board of Trustee’s approval.

Section 3. Duties of the Pastor. The duties of the Pastor or Co-Pastor shall be to:

  1. Conduct the religious services of the Society, with the assistance of the other certified and recommended student workers and Members in Good Standing;
  • Select and schedule the platform workers;
  • Direct the social activities of the Society;
  • Act as spiritual advisor to the Members of the congregations when called upon to do so;
  • Recommend the teachings, seminars, and classes to be offered under the auspices of this Society in accordance with NSAC Bylaw Article XVI Miscellaneous, Section 10, Eligibility of Persons Conducting Classes.
  • Officiate at weddings (when qualified to do so), consecrations (naming services), funerals, and all other functions normally performed by the ministry when called upon to do so;
  • Recommend to the Board of Trustees persons qualified for certification application and certificate renewals; and
  • Attend Board of Trustee meetings as a non-voting member.

Section 4. Removal of the Pastor/Co-Pastor. The removal of the Pastor or Co-Pastor shall be by a majority vote of the Membership of this Society present in a duly called regular or special Members meeting.

Section 5. Eligibility of Platform Workers. The Pastor or Pastoral Committee Chairperson may recommend or approve persons meeting any of the following qualifications to serve the public platform of this Society:

  1. Those holding certification under the National Spiritualist Association of Churches;
  • Students of this Society working toward certification who are recommended by the Pastor or Pastoral Committee Chairperson;
  • Students of other NSAC chartered church societies upon recommendation of their Pastor or Board of Trustees;
  • Members in Good Standing of this Society upon recommendation of the Pastor or Pastoral Committee Chairperson; or
  • Guest workers as approved by the Pastor or Pastoral Committee Chairperson.

Section 6. Platform Code of Conduct. Political or other controversial subjects shall not be discussed from the platform during any religious services of the Society. Acceptable rules of decorum are expected for all platform workers. Inappropriate behavior, including, but not limited to: lewd behavior, drug or alcohol intoxication, foul language, inappropriate dress, a general lack of reverence, or discourtesy toward the congregation, will not be tolerated and will be cause for immediate dismissal from the platform. If this occurs, the Pastor, or the Pastoral Committee Chairperson, or a member of the Board of Trustees, will direct the remainder of the service.

Article IX Complaints

Section 1. Complaint Procedure. Anyone having cause for complaint against any Officer, Trustee, or Member of this Society may file with the Secretary a written complaint describing the complaint, and the Secretary shall send a copy of the complaint to the person(s) named. The Board of Trustees may, at its discretion, put the written complaint before an Investigation Committee. The Committee shall inquire into the facts and report back to the Board of Trustees within thirty (30) days with a recommendation to dismiss the complaint or file charges according to the NSAC Disciplinary Procedure or with the NSAC Ethics Review Committee.

Article X Parliamentary Authority

Section 1. Parliamentary Authority. The current edition of Roberts Rules of Order, Newly Revised, shall be the parliamentary authority and govern this Society in all matters not provided for in its Bylaws.

Section 2. Parliamentarian. A parliamentarian will be appointed by the Board of Trustees to maintain order and oversee the conduct of the proceedings at the Annual and Biannual Membership Meetings. In the absence of a parliamentarian, a member of the Board of Trustees present at the meeting will assume the role of Parliamentarian for the duration of the meeting. A parliamentarian will be present at meetings of the Board of Trustees if possible.

 Article XI Inactivity

Section 1. Inactivity. If this Church Society should become inactive for any cause and cease holding services or meetings, its Board of Trustees shall appoint one of its Officers or one of its Members in Good Standing to be the custodian and to have possession of its charter, records, and assets for such period of time up to three (3) years for the reestablishment and resumption of its services and activities. Within thirty (30) days after appointment, said custodian shall make a full written report to the Secretary of the state association (where applicable), and to the Secretary of the NSAC. This report shall describe or name: all assets of the church, current Membership list with names of Board Members, certified or commissioned workers and ordained ministers, and a plan for reorganization.

Section 2. Defunct. Whenever this Society shall disperse or otherwise become defunct, its Board of Trustees, through its Secretary or its custodian, shall surrender its charter and records and all of its assets to the Secretary of the NSAC to be held in trust for at least three (3) years.

Section 3. Dissolution. Upon dissolution of the organization, the assets of the corporation shall be distributed in accordance with Article VIII, Section 7 of the NSAC Bylaws, the parent body of this organization. If the NSAC is unable or unwilling to manage and/or distribute the assets of this corporation upon it becoming defunct or dissolving, distribution shall be in accordance with the laws of the state for defunct or dissolved nonprofit corporations.

Article XII Amendments

Section 1. Amendments of Bylaws. These Bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds (2/3) vote at any Annual, Biannual, or Special Membership Meeting. A quorum must be present at the meeting. Amendments are proposed by any Member in Good Standing of this Society, the Board of Trustees, a Committee on revision or amendment appointed by the Board of Trustees, or by the Membership at an Annual, Biannual, or Special Membership Meeting. The NSAC Proposed Amendment to Bylaws form will be used to suggest modifications to the Bylaws.

Section 2. Filing and Notice of Amendment. An amendment may be proposed in writing with the Secretary to be presented to the Board of Trustees at the next Board meeting. The Secretary will make all reasonable efforts to notify the entire Membership of the Society of all proposed amendments by general announcement, written postal mail, or electronic mail at least forty-five (45) days prior to the time of holding the Annual, Biannual, or Special Membership Meeting.

Section 3. Effective Date of Amendments. Amendments adopted shall become effective at the close of the meeting at which they are adopted unless otherwise stated.

Adopted Bylaw Amendments

November 28, 2004

Article V, Section 3 – Item “g” added Article V, Section 4 – Item “f” added

Article VI, Section 1 – “If the second Sunday falls on Mother’s Day the meeting will be moved to the third Sunday” added

November 13, 2010

Article I, Section 1 – “NSAC” added to the Society’s name. Done to bring the name into compliance with NSAC.

Article IV, Section 1 – Change five (5) trustees to six (6). Change Board of Trustees to ten (10).

Article IV, Section 2 – Item “c” changed to Secretary and three (3) Trustees.

Article V, Section 3. Item “b” changed to read “at least ten days prior”

May 19, 2013

Amendments suggested by the Bylaws Review Committee, recommended by the Board of Trustees, and approved by the Membership. These include:

  1. Amendments made for grammatical and housekeeping changes for the following articles/sections:
• Article I, Section 1 • Article IV, Section 2   • Article VI, Section 2
• Article III, Section 1 • Article IV, Section 4   • Article VIII, Section 4
• Article III, Section 5 • Article V, Section 2   • Article X, Section 1
• Article III, Section 9 • Article VI, Section 1    
  • Amendments made to the following articles/sections as suggested by the NSAC Model Bylaws:
• Article II, Section 1 • Article II, Section 5   • Article XI, Section 1
• Article II, Section 2 • Article III, Section 7   • Article XI, Section 2
• Article II, Section 3 • Article V, Section 1   • Article XI, Section 3
• Article II, Section 4 • Article VIII, Section 2    
  • Amendments made to Article III having to do with Membership types and dues including the following sections:
  • Article III, Section 2       Article III, Section 6
  • Article III, Section 3       Article III, Section 3

4. Amendments made to Article IV having to do with the composition and duties of the Board of Trustees including the following sections:

  • Article IV, Section 1       Article IV, Section 6   Article IV, Section 9
  • Article IV, Section 3       Article IV, Section 7   Article IV, Section 10
  • Article IV, Section 5       Article IV, Section 8   Article IV, Section 11

5. Amendments made to Article V having to do with the duties of the Officers of the Board of Trustees including the following sections:

                          • Article V, Section 1                 Article V, Section 3

6. Amendments made to Article VI having to do with the conduct of Membership Meetings including the following sections:

  • Article VI, Section 3       Article VI, Section 5   Article VI, Section 7
  • Article VI, Section 4       Article VI, Section 6    

7. Amendments made to Article VII having to do with the composition of Committees including the following sections:

                          • Article VII, Section 1               Article VII, Section 2

8. Amendments of Article VIII having to do with Pastor, Co-Pastor, and platform workers including the following sections:

  • Article VIII, Section 1    Article VIII, Section 6
  • Article VIII, Section 5    Article VIII, Section 7

9. Amendments to Articles IX, X, and XI having to do with complaints, parliamentary authority, and amendments to the Bylaws including the following articles/sections:

  • Article IX, Section 1       Article XI, Section 1   Article IX, Section 3
  • Article X, Section 2        Article XI, Section 2    

November 10, 2013

Amendments made to conform NSAC recommendations received on June 5, 2013 including:

Article III, Section 2 – Added item “d”

Article III, Section 9 – Added, “… and upon approval of the Board of Trustees or the members present in a duly called meeting.”

Article VI, Section 6 – Removed, “…from the Nominating Committee, subject to review by the Board of Trustees.” Added, “A roll call shall be taken and the eligibility of each member’s right to vote shall be verified before proceeding to elections.”

Article VI, Section 7 – Added, “The absentee ballots will remain sealed until Annual Membership Meeting.” Added, “…will open the absentee ballots in front of the membership during the election process, and…”

Article VI, Section 8 – Added, “…a majority of…” in the first sentence.

May 18, 2014

Article IV, Section 7 – Added entire section.

May 15, 2015

                 Article IV, Section 9 – Added entire section

May 15, 2016

  1. Amendments made to change location from Massachusetts to New Hampshire.
Article 11,  Section 2 and 3, Page 4 Article IV, Section 9c, Page 8
  • Amendments to change the structure of the board and voting groups
Article IV. Section 1, Page 6 Article IV, Section 2, Page 7
  • Amendments to clarify duties of the Pastor,Co-Pastor and Pastoral Committee
Article VII, Section 1g, Page 15 Article 8, Section 1, Page 16
       
  November 11, 2018  
  Article, Section, Page Description
1 IV, g. Section 10, Page 9 Move Board Meeting from Tuesday to Sunday
2 VII, l.g, Page 15 Pastoral Committee – Delete to Move Pastoral Position to Section VIII
3 VIII, Section 1, Page 15 Eligibility for the Pastor
4 VIII, Section 2, Page 16 Section 3. Duties of the Pastor
5 VIII, Section 3, Page 16 Section 4. Removal of the Pastor
6 VIII, Section 4, Page 16 Section 5. Eligibility of Platform Workers
7 VIII, 5, Page 17 Section 6. Platform Code of Conduct
8 VIII, Add new Section 2, Page 16 Section 2. Eligibility of Pastoral Committee Chairperson
9 VIII, 3.e, Page 16 Teaching Under the Society

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