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How long to leave inactive members on the books?
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Post How long to leave inactive members on the books? Aaron Scott
If you had members that moved on (were either not going to church at all or were attending elsewhere, perhaps not even another Church of God), how long would you retain their names on the roll?

Let's also assume that, so far as we know, they are not backslidden, at least into open sin.

Personally, I'm pretty much of the mind to move them off quickly, since that leaves them with a say in a church they no longer attend, but I've known of instances where people stay on the books for YEARS...perhaps out of request, perhaps out of belonging to a church they attending 20 years before, etc.

Thoughts?
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8/7/15 4:12 am


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Post Nature Boy Florida
Better ask your overseer.....they can get mad if it looks like the state is losing members on their watch....even if accurate.
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8/7/15 5:27 am


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Post Members on the role ... Mat
Members on the role who are not faithful to the local church can (and will) come back to "haunt" you when a problem arises. Issues like challenges to the pastor's leadership, building projects, and now-a-days, building usage issues and same-sex marriage issues, are an opportunity for those who are not "invested" in the local church but who have a voice to comeback and "muddy the water".

As an old Baptist Pastor said, "Every Fall you should have a membership drive to drive away those members who are not committed."

How long to wait, if you have had no contact and can not find them, how about in the seventh year? Sounds Biblical, and if they don't care enough about their membership, they do not need to be a member.

Mat
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8/7/15 6:46 am


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Post My thinking is 3 months, open sin, going elsewhere, death, or transfer Aaron Scott
If a person doesn't come to church for three months, and is not sick, etc., I consider that enough of an absence to question their membership duties. They DID promise to support the church in giving and attendance, did they not?

And like Mat alluded to, indeed, I have seen former members show up for pastoral elections like bugs out of the woodwork. They don't show up for roughly forever...until there is some decision to be made, and then they want a full and equal voice. NO.

I know we ALL, overseers and pastors, want to keep people on the roll. But if it's really a false number...how are we serving the Kingdom? And how are we in good standing with the One called Faithful and TRUE?

If a person doesn't show up for 3 months...is living in open sin...is clearly attending another church...dies...or requests a transfer...I'm thinking we should go ahead and move on. If they return, we can have them rejoin.
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8/7/15 7:01 am


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Post JLarry
I think the CoG should allow Active and Non Active members.

Only Active members should be allowed to vote.

Non Active IMO would be anyone who have not attended in three months, unless they have a sickness.
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8/7/15 8:28 am


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Post sheepdogandy
Is the Pastor's salary still determined by the number of names on the roll?

There you go.
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8/7/15 8:28 am


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Post JLarry...WONDERFUL IDEA! Aaron Scott
That's a very thoughtful idea. If the Church of God will adopt that practice, I would prefer that, since no one wants to have to inform anyone that their names are being taken from the roll. Golf Cart Mafia Capo Famiglia
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8/7/15 8:37 am


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Post Deleted to post elsewhere. Aaron Scott
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8/7/15 8:48 am


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Post Quiet Wyatt
When it comes to a business meeting of the church, if they are not tithe-paying members, they don't get to vote on anything.

We have a member here who retired and moved several hours away. He still faithfully sends his tithe every month, and asks that his membership remain here. He has never been a problem at all.

I think ultimately it all comes down to a case-by-case issue. If there are grounds to remove someone, then do it.
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8/7/15 8:56 am


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Post Old Time Country Preacher
1. Send a letter to everbody what aint attended fer the last 5 years or more.

2. State in the letter that in order to maintain integrity in the church membership, your church is working to bring the membership roll current and up to date.

3. In the letter, clearly state that if they aint attendin nowhere invite them back. If they attend sommers else, bid them God's blessings. If they wish to retain their membership at your church, ask them to write a letter within the next 30 days requesting their membership remain intact at your church. This puts the ball in their court.

4. Then, lets just say that there are 50 folk that either don't respond or are attendin sommers else, remove about 5 members a month from the membership roll till ya get everthing current.
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8/7/15 10:56 am


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Post sheepdogandy
Quiet Wyatt wrote:
When it comes to a business meeting of the church, if they are not tithe-paying members, they don't get to vote on anything.

We have a member here who retired and moved several hours away. He still faithfully sends his tithe every month, and asks that his membership remain here. He has never been a problem at all.

I think ultimately it all comes down to a case-by-case issue. If there are grounds to remove someone, then do it.


The last Church of God business meeting I attended included many folks I had never seen before.

Who is supposed to enforce this restriction?

Oh yeah, is the Pastor's salary determined by the number of names on the church roll?
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8/8/15 2:58 pm


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Post Dean Steenburgh
I posed this same question a few years ago to the legal dept. & they said you should remove non-existent members at the same rate you include new members.

In order to define someone as a non-existent or non-supportive member it is suggested that you inform them of their 'inactive' status in order to define one who is MIA. This varies from state to state as to the legal issues involved. In many states you can't just verbally inform them that their vote doesn't count any more, especially on the day of a business meeting.

I was told to search my church membership list & send out a letter explaining the reason for a called membership meeting or you can explain that the church office is doing some purging of the files in the event of future business meetings. In the letter explain to all of the membership what your churches definition of a 'member in good standing' is & also inform them of the definition of an inactive member.

In the letter you must explain that ______________ Church of God will allow all of it's members 30 days to re-acclimate to the fellowship of the church. If within 30 days they do not begin to re-fellowship with the church then a second letter is to be mailed out explaining to them that at the current time their membership has been placed as 'inactive' whereby all rights (including attending membership meetings & voting) will be restricted until the pastor & his church board can meet to discuss re-admittance to membership with full privilege.

Re-admittance includes going through membership class again & signing a new membership card.



.
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8/8/15 6:51 pm


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Post Quiet Wyatt
Dean,

Before any business meeting we have, including any announcement of any upcoming business meetings we may have, I make it clear that while anyone is welcome to attend, only tithe-paying members' voices are to be heard in the meeting, per the Minutes, which would of course include any vote that is taken.

"Q. Should those who do not pay tithes have a voice in the church?

A. If a member does not have enough interest in the church to support it with his tithes, he should have respect enough for the church to keep quiet in business meetings." (22nd A., 1927, p. 32)."
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8/8/15 8:42 pm


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Post Re: How long to leave inactive members on the books? Old Time Country Preacher
Tom Sterbens wrote:
For 7 months, 7 weeks, and 7 days.
(Unless there is a blood moon)

Next question....


How does the Shemitah figger into that, Tom?
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8/8/15 9:37 pm


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Post sheepdogandy
Does any Church of God pastor on this board receive his salary based upon the number of members on the church roll?

This ain't rocket science folks.
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8/9/15 7:29 am


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Post Something to ponder wayupnorth
That's the COG way:

Lie about membership so pastor, overseer and higher ups look good.
Lie about finances, so pastor don't have to send in the proper dues.
Lie about attendance, so pastor looks good to higher ups.

One time I took names of deceased members off the role of a particular church I was pastoring and I received a call from the Overseer demanding that I put those names back on the roll. He went on to say that if I show a decline in membership and not an increase that I would never get anywhere in the COG. Needless to say it took me 20 years to realize that the COG is not so honest. I'm not talking about individuals but as a denomination not so honest. Just take a moment and look at all that goes on behind closed doors in closed meetings. I mean come on God sees everything. Enough of my ranting.
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8/9/15 7:59 am


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Post Quiet Wyatt
sheepdogandy wrote:
Does any Church of God pastor on this board receive his salary based upon the number of members on the church roll?

This ain't rocket science folks.


Most of the CoG pastors I know would be ecstatic if they received anything even close to the Minute-book pay scale. I think the reality is that most receive what their local church is able/willing to pay, regardless of the recommended pay scale. And, the other reality is that state overseers generally speaking will very strongly discourage removing members just for inactivity.
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8/9/15 8:06 am


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Post Dean Steenburgh
Quiet Wyatt wrote:
Dean,

Before any business meeting we have, including any announcement of any upcoming business meetings we may have, I make it clear that while anyone is welcome to attend, only tithe-paying members' voices are to be heard in the meeting, per the Minutes, which would of course include any vote that is taken.

"Q. Should those who do not pay tithes have a voice in the church?

A. If a member does not have enough interest in the church to support it with his tithes, he should have respect enough for the church to keep quiet in business meetings." (22nd A., 1927, p. 32)."


QW,
My info was about answering the direct question of the author of this thread. We all have our basic direction we go with in terms of business meetings. I don't hold 100% to your method but we're close. In fact one of my best members was one who rarely could give tithe. It wasn't a heart issue as much as it was a disability issue. However he was always available to help us in ways that nobody else would help thus saving our budget much needed income, so in a certain way he gave even more.

I'm also not afraid to ask somebody to remain quiet if theyre posing issues or creating a stir or strife during a biz meeting.
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8/9/15 11:57 am


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Post Re: Something to ponder Cojak
wayupnorth wrote:
That's the COG way:

Lie about membership so pastor, overseer and higher ups look good.
Lie about finances, so pastor don't have to send in the proper dues.
Lie about attendance, so pastor looks good to higher ups.

One time I took names of deceased members off the role of a particular church I was pastoring and I received a call from the Overseer demanding that I put those names back on the roll. He went on to say that if I show a decline in membership and not an increase that I would never get anywhere in the COG. Needless to say it took me 20 years to realize that the COG is not so honest. I'm not talking about individuals but as a denomination not so honest. Just take a moment and look at all that goes on behind closed doors in closed meetings. I mean come on God sees everything. Enough of my ranting.


It seems that way at times, but it is not the COG way. I am sure it happens. I once requested my name be removed and assumed it had been. Many years later I returned and was in good fellowship and asked the pastor if my wife and I could join, he was caught aback (different pastor), YOU are members here, you have been for years.... So there are reasons I guess, I was a prodigal.

Is there such a thing as an 'inactive members' list. When I pastored I was told there was no such thing. Embarassed Confused
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8/9/15 7:31 pm


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Post Old Time Country Preacher
sheepdogandy wrote:
Does any Church of God pastor on this board receive his salary based upon the number of members on the church roll?

This ain't rocket science folks.


I aint quite shore what you gittin at here, Sheepdog. Can ya help the ole timer understand what ya tryin to say?

Are ya sayin that cause a COG preachers salary is based on the membership, no COG preacher would dare have the integrity to mess with the membership cause it would effect his salary? Cause if this is what ya suggestin, it aint so. I know for a fact cause I don't it maself.
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