THE ENDOWMENT FUND
This congregation shall have a Congregational Fund. The Fund shall be called ST. JOHNS EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH ENDOWMENT FUND. It shall not be a separate entity, but shall be one of the funds of this congregation.
II. GENERAL PURPOSE.
A. This Fund's purpose shall be to receive gifts and bequests and to use them for the mission and ministry of ST. JOHNS EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH, and the LUTHERAN CHURCH-MISSOURI SYNOD, its districts, seminaries, colleges, institutions or agencies.
B. Both the principal and income from unrestricted gifts and bequests to the Fund are to be used for the uses, projects and programs recommended by the Board of Stewardship and approved by a simple majority of the Voters' Assembly provided, that the uses, projects and programs shall be consistent with the general purpose for which this Fund has been established. The list of approved uses, projects and programs shall be appended to these Bylaws and shall be distributed to the members of the congregation.
C. The Board of Stewardship shall make, at least annually, recommendations to the Voters' Assembly for distribution of the income and/or principal of the Fund for the designated uses, projects and programs. None of the income of principal from unrestricted gifts shall be distributed to the congregation's operating budget, except as hereinafter set forth. The distribution of the income and or principal from unrestricted gifts for purposes other than the operating budget shall be determined by a simple majority of the Voters' Assembly.
In the initial 5 years of a new congregational program or project, which is normally funded by the operating budget, the income and principal of the Fund may be used on a proportionally decreasing basis so that by the 5th year, if not sooner, the new program or project is fully supported by the operating budget. Such use of the income and/or principal from unrestricted gifts needs the approval of a simple majority of the Voters' Assembly.
D. Gifts and bequests may be made upon special terms or conditions or containing limitations or directions as to the investments or use of the substance of the gift, the use or accumulation of the income, provided that such are acceptable to ST. JOHNS EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH. The Board of Stewardship shall submit at the next meeting of the Voters' Assembly (or request an emergency meeting), its recommendation on the acceptability of such a gift or bequest. The acceptance of such a gift shall be by a simple majority of the Voters' Assembly.
The ST. JOHNS EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH FUND shall continue in existence and be used as hereinabove provided, unless earlier revoked so long as ST. JOHNS EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH shall continue to exist. If ST. JOHNS EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH should cease to exist, then the assets constituting the Fund when ST. JOHNS EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH ceases to exist shall be transferred as provided in Article 8 of the Constitution.
IV. GOVERNING BOARD AND OFFICERS.
A. The Board of Stewardship shall promote and manage the Fund. The treasurer of the congregation shall be responsible for receipts and disbursements from the Fund, shall maintain complete and accurate books of accounts, and shall provide at least annually a written financial report of the Fund to the Voters' Assembly.
B. The Board of Stewardship, if it deems it to be in the best interest of the congregation, may recommend that the assets of the Fund be delivered to The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod Foundation for investment management. Any agreement entered into for the management of the Fund shall be valid only if approved by a two-thirds (2/3) majority of the voting members present at a duly called and constituted meeting of the Voters' Assembly.
C. The Board of Stewardship shall meet at least once a month at the Church at a time fixed by resolution of the Board of Stewardship and more frequently as it may be deemed by it for the best interests of the Fund. The Board of Stewardship when it deems it unnecessary to hold a particular meeting, may by resolution cancel a meeting. Special meetings may be called on twenty-four (24) hours written or oral notice to the members of the Board of Stewardship by the chairperson or any two members. No notice other than recording of the resolution of the Board of Stewardship fixing the time of the regular meetings need be given the members. Each member is charged with knowledge of the contents of the minute book.
D. A quorum shall consist of 5 members of the Board of Stewardship. The affirmative vote of a majority present and voting shall carry any motion or resolution or recommendations for the endowment fund.
E. The Board of Stewardship shall establish written rules and regulations as may be necessary for the conduct of its business. It shall adopt standards and goals to guide in the expenditure of the income from the Fund, which it may amend, all within the stated purposes of this Fund.
F. The Board of Stewardship shall maintain accounts with such financial institutions as it may by resolution authorize and determine. All checks and other documents transferring or expending any funds or assets in the Fund shall be executed by the treasurer of the congregation.
G. Any members of the Board of Stewardship with check signing authority, at the expense of the Fund, shall be covered by a corporate fidelity bond in a principal amount to be determined from time to time by the Board of Stewardship.
H. The Board of Stewardship may ask other members of the congregation to serve as advisory members and may employ, at the expense of the Fund income, such professional counseling on investments and legal matters as it deems to be for the best interest of the Fund.
I. The Board of Stewardship shall maintain complete and accurate books of account and may employ such professional help as it deems necessary in this connection.
J. The secretary of the Board of Stewardship shall maintain complete and accurate minutes of all meetings of the Board.
K. The chairperson, or the member designated by the chairperson, shall preside at all Board of Stewardship meetings.
L. No member of the Board of Stewardship shall engage in any self-dealing or transactions with the Fund in which the member of the Board of Stewardship has direct or indirect financial interest and shall at all times refrain from any conduct in which his/her personal interests would conflict with the interest of the Fund.
V. FISCAL YEAR.
A. For tax, accounting, distribution, or other purposes, the fiscal year of ST. JOHNS EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH shall be the fiscal year of the Fund.
B. Within two months after the close of each of the Fund's fiscal years, and at such other time(s) as is deemed convenient, an itemized written statement accurately reflecting the position of the Fund's income and corpus accounts as of a date reasonably close to the date the statement is submitted, and the receipts, disbursements and changes therein since the Fund's inception or the previous accounting, as the case may be, shall be submitted to the ST. JOHNS EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH Voters' Assembly.
A. The Board of Stewardship shall, at least annually, render a full and complete account of the administration of the Fund during the preceding year.
B. Gifts and contributions from any individual, firm or corporation, in money, in securities, or in any other form of property, including, by way of explanation and not in limitation, direct gifts for the purpose of the Fund, gifts in memory of any deceased person or in appreciation or recognition of any living person, gifts in the form of a devise or bequest under Will or trust instrument, and gifts in the form of advise or bequest under Will or trust instrument, gifts or proceeds or portions of proceeds of insurance, annuity, or endowment policies of contracts, may be received by the Fund at any time.
C. Means for acknowledging the receipt of each gift and contribution shall be established and maintained, including, whenever feasible, a designation of the value ascribed to each gift.
E. All funds and property shall be kept and maintained separate, distinct and independent from the funds and property otherwise belonging to the church. However, the Board of Stewardship shall in no event be required to make physical segregation of the assets of the Fund in order to conform to the directions of any individual donors, but may establish separate accounts in its accounting records.
F. The Board of Stewardship is to inform the members of the congregation of the purpose of the Fund, and may periodically arrange for members of the congregation to meet with professional counselors in the areas of charitable giving, wills, bequests, insurance, etc.
G. All new members of the Board of Stewardship are to receive a copy of the Fund bylaws to become acquainted with the function and purposes of the Fund.
The manager of the Fund, whether the Fund is managed and administered by the Board of Stewardship, or whether the Fund is delivered to THE LUTHERAN CHURCH-MISSOURI SYNOD FOUNDATION for management and administration, shall have the following powers and authority.
A. The property constituting the corpus of the Fund shall be invested and reinvested in any kind of property, (whether real or personal, tangible or intangible, and/or domestic or foreign), including, but not limited to, securities, real estate, oil, gas, and other natural resources and/or accounts or certificates of banks or other lending institutions, and each investment shall be managed and protected in accordance with the principles herein established. In exercising the authority granted in this Section, the decisions with respect to investment shall be guided by the concept of a prudent investor whose investment purpose includes both income and capital appreciation and shall not otherwise be restricted by any law, rule or custom (i) requiring safety of corpus as a primary consideration, (ii) regarding investment in income producing property, or (iii) requiring diversification of investments. It is further understood that any part or all of the Fund may be invested in obligations of The Lutheran Church Extension Fund-Missouri Synod, St. Louis, Missouri. In amplification, but not limitation, of the foregoing, authority is granted:
a. to acquire interest in property by purchase, lease, rental or other method; to sell, option, exchange, redeem or convert any property interests; and to rent or lease property of the Fund;
b. to exercise all rights and privileges accruing to a holder of securities, including (without limitation) all conversion, subscription, and preemptive rights; to deposit any securities with, delegate discretionary power to, and participate, cooperate and contract with, as a member or otherwise, any protective committee of security holders; and to effectuate any merger, consolidation, dissolution, reorganization or financial adjustment of the issuer of any securities and/or any transfer, demise, or encumbrance of any of its properties;
c. to manage and/or develop any real property owned, leased or otherwise held by the Fund; to erect, repair, remodel, reconstruct, demolish or remove buildings or other improvements on it; to partition or subdivide it; to dedicate all or any part of it to public or semi-public use, and to grant easement or other charges with respect to it;
d. to abandon any property interest deemed worthless or of insignificant value;
e. to borrow money from any source, to encumber property of the Fund and to repay any loan due by the Fund;
f. to foreclose any mortgage, lien, or other encumbrance, and to purchase the encumbered property, whether through foreclosure or private arrangement;
g. to establish and maintain, out of income, depreciation, depletion and/or amortization reserves;
h. to maintain a portion or all of the property constituting the Fund in liquid or nearly liquid form, even though little or no income is earned thereon;
i. to use income or corpus funds (irrespective of their derivation) for any purpose of the Fund and with respect to any property of the Fund (irrespective of the income, if any, it produces) even if such funds are derived from the sale of or income from, other property, the Fund or from a loan (from income or an outside source) using such other property as security.
B. Without limiting the authority otherwise conferred, the additional authority is hereby granted to be exercised as is believed to be in the best interest of the Fund:
a. to accept and receipt for any inter vivos, testamentary or other transfer of property to the Fund;
b. to hold property, and to negotiate and execute documents on behalf of the Fund, in the name of the Fund or in the name of a nominee(s) without disclosing any fiduciary, relationship to anyone;
c. to allocate between income and corpus (in case where reasonable doubt of the applicable law exists) in equitable proportions, and money or other property received, and any loss or expenditure incurred;
d. to vote, or refrain voting, securities having voting privileges, and to give any type or proxy (with or without voting directions) to vote the same;
e. to make division and distribution of property held in the Fund (whenever directed to do so) either in kind or in cash, or partly in kind and partly in cash and for such purpose to set values upon any property of the Fund;
f. to protect the Fund and its property by insurance against damage, loss or liability;
g. to establish checking account(s) in which may be deposited income and/or corpus cash; and
h. to employ, at the expense of the fund, attorneys, investment counsel, brokers, custodians of assets, and other agents and employees.
Any amendment to this Bylaw which will change, alter or amend the general purpose for which the Fund is established shall be adopted only if approved by a two-thirds (2/3) majority of the voting members present at a duly called and constituted meeting of the Voters' Assembly, the notice of which has stated that such an amendment will be proposed to the Voters' Assembly.
I. THE BOARD OF CHURCH PROPERTIES
The Board of Church Properties shall consist of at least five (5) members, including the elected Director of the Board.
The basic objectives of this Board are the proper maintenance and repair of church property, the representation of the congregation in all legal matters, and the general protection of the congregation against loss or damage of whatever nature.
That the objectives of this Board may be carried out, the Board, either corporately or through specifically designated individuals, shall:
1. Make an annual inspection of church properties and equipment and recommend to the Voters' Assembly needed repairs, improvements, or replacements.
2. Conduct an annual inventory of all church properties, equipment, and supplies, including acquisition date and approximate value of each item.
3. Carry out all resolutions of the Voters' Assembly on purchase, repairs, replacement of church property and equipment in conjunction with the congregational Purchasing Agent.
4. Determine and engage, with congregational approval, adequate custodial help. The Board shall also meet periodically with custodians to discuss the care of the buildings, needs and problems in custodial service, and the like.
5. Prepare for the custodial help a detailed list of the required daily and weekly, monthly or annual maintenance of the facilities and equipment of the congregation.
6. Annually review and recommend salaries for all custodial help and to that end study and recommend policies regarding union labor, fair employment practices and the like to be applied to suppliers and to the congregation.
7. Determine and establish, with the approval of the Voters' Assembly, regulations governing the use of church property and equipment.
8. Coordinate the schedule of activities within the facilities in conjunction with the Board of Parish Fellowship.
9. Make and issue keys for church property, and keep and review annually a list of the keys issued.
10. Supervise, control, and recommend adequate storage facilities for all church property, equipment, and supplies and the orderly maintenance of the same.
11. Annually check the adequacy of all types of insurance for church property and equipment and negotiate insurance contracts.
12. Check all property twice a year for fire hazards.
13. Enlist work crews for special repair, improvement, cleaning, painting, decorating, landscaping and other projects.
14. Arrange for immediate repairs of an urgent nature and all normal repairs and alterations for which budget funds have been allocated.
15. Obtain legal information necessary for the wise consideration of contracts, deeds, and the like by the congregation.
16. Negotiate service contracts for the organ, office machines, and the like.
17. Make an annual inventory of official documents in safe-keeping, and enter its completion in the official minutes of the congregation.
18. Sign official documents and contracts that have been negotiated and approved by the congregation, and to this end the Director of the Board shall appoint two members of the Board of Church Properties to serve as Trustees for the congregation.
19. Obtain legal information on the laws governing nonprofit organizations.
20. Set all policies and fees for rental, use and lending of church properties.
21. Submit an annual budget request to the Board of Stewardship in the form and at the time requested by that Board.
J. THE BOARD OF PARISH FELLOWSHIP
The Board of Parish Fellowship shall consist of at least five (5) members, including the elected Director of the Board.
The basic objectives of this Board are the strengthening of the fellowship between congregation members spiritually and socially, the integration of new members into the life of the congregation, and the general upbuilding of mutual cooperation, trust, and enjoyment among the members of the congregation.
1. Plan, supervise, and implement larger gatherings of the congregation from time to time through the year which will further the goals of the congregation.
3. Maintain an adequate group of willing workers who will help to plan, coordinate and execute the work necessary to the successful accomplishment of fellowship goals.
4. Provide a general atmosphere of friendliness, among the members on a smaller scale by suggesting to groups, societies, Bible Classes, and the like ways of bringing their members into meaningful personal relationships.
5. Provide for the integration of new members and their families into the congregation through periodic fellowship nights, dinners, rallies, and the like in conjunction with the Board of Evangelism.
6. Review and adopt or adapt materials and ideas from various sources which will bring congregation members into personal contact in groups such as family nights, plays, Fun Fairs, talent shows, and the like.
7. Plan, supervise and implement recurring yearly events which will focus attention on the major aspects of the congregation's work.
8. Receive and approve requests for the use of the congregation's facilities for wedding receptions, recreational activities by various groups and all other activities of whatever nature and from whatever source.
9. Develop policies and rules for the use of the facilities at the functions sponsored by this Board in conjunction with the Board of Church Properties.
10. Maintain and publish a weekly and monthly schedule of activities within the congregation's facilities and coordinate, approve or disapprove requests for such activities in the best interests of the congregation.
11. Be responsible for and supervise the use of all property and equipment use for the various activities sponsored by this and other Boards, groups or committees who have requested and received approval of an activity in our facilities. This includes the kitchen, fellowship hall, etc.
12. For administrative purposes and program development, supervise the work of the Couples Club, Recreation Committee, and the like.
13. Submit an annual budget request in the form and at the time requested by the Board of Stewardship.
K. THE BOARD OF PUBLIC RELATIONS
The Board of Public Relations shall consist of at least two (2) members, including the elected Director of the Board.
2. Be concerned, together with other appropriate Boards, with the congregation's role in the community and develop useful means of becoming a better servant to the community.
3. Work with other churches to improve the unified Christian image to the community and to implement the Church's mission.
4. Maintain contact with benevolent and charitable agencies in the community, state and on the national level and recommend to the congregation responses to opportunities for service.
5. Establish and maintain a continuing program of publicity for the congregation and its activities which will reflect favorably on the congregation and its commitment to the Gospel of Christ.
6. Maintain the church bulletin boards indoors and outdoors and recommend appropriate messages and themes for publication.
7. Establish and vigorously pursue a program for endowing the congregation through wills, bequests, foundations, and other sources.
8. Work for the overall enhancement of the congregation's image in the various news media and publications of the community.
9. Establish and maintain friendly relationships between the congregation and the professional, community service, and governmental agencies within the community.
10. Work together with the Board of Elders in making visitors feel welcome in our midst.
11. Submit an annual budget request to the Board of Stewardship in the form and at the time requested by that Board.
These Bylaws may be amended at any meeting of the Voting Membership by a simple majority vote, provided:
The Amendment has been proposed at a previous Voters Assembly.
That the entire Voting Membership has been advised of the nature of the proposed changes and of the date of the meeting at which the proposed amendment is to be acted upon at least 14 days in advance.
All amendments to the Bylaws or to the Constitution shall be recorded in the official copy of the Constitution and Bylaws in the possession of the current secretary of the congregation.