Bylaws Revision Process
Upcoming Congregational Conversation:
Sunday, November 14th, 11:30 – 12:30
after worship in main zoom room
Topic: Meetings & Making Decisions
Click here for Bylaws Revision Process Feedback Form
The Bylaws provide the formal structure of the congregation and allow for maintaining and changing that structure. Bylaws hold the highest level of authority of congregational guiding documents; they are considered a legal binding document. Bylaws do not need to include every matter of policy. Because bylaws are generally amended only through congregational meetings, nimble congregations will create policies, operating guidelines and procedures that stand apart from the bylaws to govern day-to-day matters. These can be amended more easily as needs evolve and change.
In early 2020, the Board launched a subcommittee to review and revise our bylaws. That team, led by Board Members Rachel Murphy and Elizabeth Pirie spent months researching and revising with guidance from our Unitarian Universalist Association and other sources. Our aim was to create bylaws that a fit our current practices, reflected up-to-date changes in communication, technology and gathering, and offered us maximum flexibility. We looked for ways to become more nimble by shifting some of the operational management into policies and procedures. There are several things that are important to codify for smooth congregational operations. Some things, though important, don’t require the force of law, and therefore do not need to be in the bylaws.
Congregational Engagement Process
- We have divided the discussion of the bylaws into five key areas (membership; meetings & decision making; meetings & voting; public statements & resolutions; and other topics).
- Beginning in October, we will host monthly congregational conversations covering one of these key areas These sessions will be held virtually following Sunday morning worship services.
- Wording from the current bylaws, the wording from the proposed bylaws, the thinking behind the changes, and a section for comments and feedback.
- We plan to have our final discussion and vote on the final draft of the bylaws at the spring congregational meeting.
Fall Congregational Gatherings
Sunday, November 14th following worship (apx. 11:30 – 12:30 in our main zoom room) Topic: Meetings & Decision Making (info page)