Version Date: 27 February 2023
Article 1: Name and Residence
- The denomination is named Vineyard Groningen
Vineyard Groningen is henceforth referred to as “the congregation”
- The congregation resides in Groningen, The Netherlands
- The congregation is instituted as of 1st January 2012, for an indefinite period
- The congregation is affiliated with Vineyard Benelux (VYB), based in Wageningen, Netherlands, registered in the commercial register of the Chamber of Commerce for central Netherlands under file number 30263195
Article 2: Founding Articles
- The congregation is founded on the Bible
- The Vineyard Benelux Affiliation Agreement
Article 3: Purpose
- The congregation defines its purpose in the proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ in preaching and practice as well as the expanding of the Kingdom of God through the work of the congregation.
- The congregation has been called together to be an international, multi-cultural community in and to (but not limited to) the English-speaking community in the north of the Netherlands.
Article 4: General Means
The congregation pursues these purposes through:
- Organizing congregational meetings and services
- Organizing Bible study meetings
- Providing Biblical teaching
- Providing training for spiritual leaders
- Providing pastoral care
- Sending spiritual workers for missions and evangelization
- Founding new congregations
- Utilizing all other legal means
The activities mentioned under article 4.1.a through 4.1h need not be executed simultaneously.
Article 5: Financial Means
The financial means of the congregation consist of:
- Contributions of her members
- Donations and offerings
- Donations from legacies and inheritance
- Other means.
Annually the Board of the congregation will account for the financial affairs of the congregation.
The Board of the congregation will donate a set amount of the congregation’s annual income to Vineyard Benelux.
Article 6: Membership
- Members of the congregation are those who:
- Have accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior and the Lord of their life
- Conform to the foundation and purpose of the congregation
- Regularly partake in the congregational meetings and services
- Membership of the congregation is initiated upon request and after approval of the congregation’s Board. Membership is personal and a choice made by each individual member
- Membership will be terminated upon:
- The members’ deceasing
- The members’ request
- The decision of the Board
- Observation of the Board that the member has withdrawn from the congregation or that the member is living contrary to a Biblical lifestyle
- The members of the congregation are expected to contribute to the congregation according to their means.
Article 7: Board
- The congregation is governed by a Board which consists of members from the congregation.
- The Board consists of at least 3 persons.
- The Board delegates the day-to-day management of the congregation to the Pastor and to Vineyard Benelux.
- The Board elects from among its members a Chairman, a Secretary and a Treasurer, and possibly substitutes for the positions of Chairman and Treasurer.
- The Board will remain legally in place also when one or more of these positions becomes vacant, and the Board will seek to fill any vacancies within a reasonable amount of time.
- The Board can appoint others outside the Board to function in the role of Treasurer when necessary.
Article 8: Instigation and Resignation
- New members of the Board will be appointed upon nomination of the Board from the members of the congregation.
- Board members will serve for a two-year term, but at the completion of the two-year term members can immediately be re-elected if they so choose.
- A Board member can resign from their post at any time.
- Board membership will end upon the deceasing of the member, resignation, completion of the two-year term, or upon dismissal.
- The Board can dismiss or discharge one of its members when the individual contravenes the statutes or by-laws, does not observe a Biblical lifestyle, or acts in conflict with the general interest of the congregation. The decision to dismiss the member must be seconded by a two-thirds majority of votes in a Board meeting with all members attending, with the exception of the member in question.
- The member of the Board whose membership is thus questioned must be allowed to respond to allegations in the before mentioned Board meeting, but cannot take part in the vote.
Article 9: Tasks and Authority
- The Board consists of representatives from the church and at minimum include a Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer. The Board meets at least 3 times a year. The meetings are chaired by the Chairman. The minutes are drawn up by the Secretary and include all crucial decisions of the Board.
- The Board provides direct oversight over the finances and administration of the church and accountability and oversight over the functioning of the Pastor and other leaders in the congregation. The relationship between the Board and the Pastor are further explored in the bylaws.
- The Board will call congregational meetings a minimum of once per year to report on all matters relating to the congregation.
- The Board annually draws up and evaluates a strategic plan and budget for the next year. These are made known to the congregation.
- Additional staff is hired or appointed by the Board, as needed, and can function as either employees or volunteers. Staff is directly accountable to the Board and operates under their leadership and supervision.
- The Board is authorized to close agreements for purchase, hire, lease, registered real estate and to perform any legal action the Board considers in the interest of the congregation.
- On large purchases of real estate and payments of sums greater than 1500 euros, the Board must be unanimous in their approval.
- The Board is authorized to close agreements wherein the congregation will be depositor or debtor, or provide guarantee for a third parties debt.
- The congregation will be represented inside and outside the law to execute Board decisions by at least two of the following officials: Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and Board Member.
- The Board can allow itself to be represented by another representative with written authorization. However, when the Treasurer is thus represented to access bank accounts the authorization limit will be explicitly stated in the authorization.
- Every member of the Board is, on behalf of the congregation, authorized to accept legacies, gifts, and donations to the congregation, without onerous burden for the congregation, and is authorized to sign deeds and documents and perform all necessary functions therefore.
Article 10: Accounting and Responsibilities
- The accounting year is equal to the calendar year.
- The Treasurer manages the congregation’s finances. He drafts an annual budget of income and expenditure for the coming financial year and submits it to the Board for approval. Within three months of the end of the financial year, he reports the income and expenditure of the past financial year to the Board. Within four months of the end of the financial year, the Board will present the income and expenditure accounts of the recently closed financial year to the congregation.
- Annually the Board appoints two members of the congregation, who may not be part of the Board, as audit committee. This committee examines the end of year accounts and reports its findings to the Board.
- The Board is under obligation to keep account of the congregational assets in such a manner that at all times the financial obligations of the congregation can be accounted for.
- The Board is under obligation to retain records of the above mentioned for a duration of 5 years.
Article 11: Change of Statutes
- The Board is authorized to change these statutes by unanimous vote.
- Excluded are changes to the founding articles (art. 2) and defined purpose (art. 3) of the This paragraph of Article 11 is therefore also excluded from amendments.
Article 12: Dissolving and Settling
- The congregation will be dissolved when:
- A thus inclined unanimous decision is made by the Board
- Through insolvency, after bankruptcy has been declared
- After the congregation has been dissolved, settlement of accounts will be undertaken by the Board in accordance with Vineyard Benelux.
- After settlement, the remaining assets will be distributed to similar congregations or ministries according to the foundation and purpose of the former congregation.
Article 13: By-laws
- The Board is authorized to draw up By-laws for affairs not described in these statutes.
- The By-laws cannot contain articles that contradict these statutes.
Article 14: Closing Articles
- In case of disputes concerning the application of these statutes, as well as concerning any situation that these statutes do not address the Board is authorized to decide.
- In case of disputes concerning the Board, representatives from Vineyard Benelux will be brought in as mediators, in accordance with the Affiliation Agreement. In such cases their decision will be final and binding.