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Church Bylaws


Article 1 – The Harlansburg Presbyterian Church being a particular congregation of the Presbyterian Church (USA) recognizes that the Constitution of said church, in all its provisions is obligatory upon it and its members.

Article 2 - There shall be an annual meeting of the congregation in the church edifice on the Third Sunday of November for the transaction of any business properly coming before such meeting.

Article 3 - Special meetings may be called by the session or the presbytery. Such calls shall state clearly the purpose of such special meeting, and no other matter save that specified in the call may be considered. The session shall always call such special meetings as soon as possible when requested to do so by petition signed by any ten (10) members of the congregation.

Article 4 - Public notice of the time, place, and purpose of all meetings of the congregation shall be given from the pulpit on the two Sabbaths next preceding
the meeting.

Article 5 - The pastor shall preside. If the church is vacant, or if the pastor and the ruling elders agree that the subjects to be discussed require it, or if the pastor is ill or is
otherwise unable to be present, a minister of Shenango Presbytery shall be invited by the session to preside. This invitation shall be cleared through the committee on ministry of Shenango Presbytery.

Article 6 - The clerk of the session shall be secretary of the meetings of the congregation. If unable to attend, the session shall designate a secretary in his or her stead.

Article 7 - The members of the Church shall be active members in good standing as
defined by the usages and rules of the Presbyterian Church (USA), regardless of age.

Article 8 - As required by the laws of the State of the commonwealth of Pennsylvania,
only members of full age (18) shall be eligible to vote on questions dealing with
property and matters that are strictly the business of the corporation. Otherwise, all active members of the church are eligible to vote at all stated and special meetings of the church. Voting by proxy is not allowed.

Article 9 - Meetings shall be conducted in accordance with the General Rules
for Judicatories adopted by the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA), so far as they apply, and when they do not apply, according to usual legislative rules of order.

Article 10 - All meetings shall be opened and closed with prayer.

Article 11 - A quorum shall consist of the moderator, secretary, and ten percent of the eligible voters.

Article 12 - There shall be six (6) to nine (9) ruling elders divided into three classes, each consisting of no less than two and no more than three elders, one class of whom shall be elected each year at the annual meeting for a three-year term. No ruling elder shall serve on the session for consecutive terms either full or partial, aggregating more than six years; but shall be ineligible to be elected to a new term until one year shall have elapsed.

Article 13 - There shall be three (3) to six (6) deacons divided into three classes, each consisting of one or two deacons, one class of whom shall be elected each year at the annual meeting for a three-year term.  No deacon shall serve on the board for consecutive terms either full or partial, aggregating more than six years; but shall be ineligible to be elected to a new term until one year shall have elapsed.

Article 14 - Vacancies on the session or board of deacons may be filled at a special meeting of the congregation or at the annual meeting, as the session may determine.

Article 15 - The office and responsibilities of trustees shall be invested in the members of the session who will be considered the corporate officers of the church and serve as such for a term concurrent with their term on session.

Article 16 - The pastor shall be, ex officio, president of the board of trustees and the clerk of session shall be, ex officio, secretary of the board of trustees. The board of trustees shall appoint a church treasurer.

Article 17 - A quorum for session meetings shall be a minimum of three (3) duly elected and currently serving elders; a quorum for the transaction of business as trustees shall be a majority of the trustees then in office.

Article 18 - There shall be a representative nominating committee chosen in accordance with the Form of Government. This committee shall bring to the annual meeting nominations of one eligible person only for each vacancy to be filled. Additional nominations of qualified persons may be made from the floor by any eligible voter.

Article 19 - These bylaws may be amended subject to the charter of the corporation, the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the Constitution of the Presbyterian Church (USA) at any annual meeting or at any special meeting by a two third's (2/3 's) *vote of the voters present provided that a full reading of the proposed changes or a printed distribution of the same shall have been made in connection with the call of the meeting.

Article 20 - These bylaws or the charter of this corporation may not be amended contrary to or so as not to include the provisions of the Constitution of the Presbyterian Church (USA).

Article 21 - Enabling Provision: Aggregate terms of service provisions heretofore stated shall not apply to any terms served by an officer of the church elected to and holding office prior to Dec. 31, 2016.