Elections in the church

Every year in Dublin West we elect a new team of church officers and leaders of departments. For 2018 the election process will start on 6th of October with a business meeting at 10:30.

To review the main parts and the framework of election process, please consult the information below and the resources available: Election in the Church (a graphic presentation in PDF format) and the Church Manual (see chapter Elections).

Who elects? Who votes?

Who elects church officers? Officers are elected through an appointed nominating committee.

And who gives the final vote? The nominating committee brings its report to the church, which then votes on the names presented.

What is the task of the nominating committee? The nominating committee shall study the needs of the church and inquire into the fitness of members to serve in the different offices.

How many should be in the nominating committee? The size of the nominating committee will range from five members in a small church to a larger number in a large church. The number to be chosen is left to the discretion of each church and should be studied by the board. A suitable recommendation then will be brought to the church.

Who Should Be Members of the Nominating Committee? Only members in regular standing should be chosen to serve on the nominating committee. They should be persons of good judgment who have the welfare and prosperity of the church at heart.

When and how is the nominating committee appointed? The nominating committee should be appointed early in the closing quarter of the church year and should report at least three weeks before the final Sabbath of the church year.

Who appoints the nominating committee? The church shall appoint an organizing committee responsible to nominate the nominating committee.

How is this organizing committee chosen? This organizing committee may be chosen in one of two ways:

1. By nominations, verbal or written, from the floor. If verbal nominations are made, no member may nominate more than one person. Every effort should be made to ensure fair representation in the composition of the organizing committee. The size of the organizing committee should be five to seven more than the number of board members.

2. By the church authorizing the board, together with five to seven additional persons chosen by the church to function as the organizing committee.

How the Process Works

How the Process Works

The steps of the nominating process are:

1. The church appoints by vote an organizing committee by one of the two methods listed above.

2. The organizing committee recommends names to the church for the nominating committee. Every effort should be made to ensure fair representation in the composition of the nominating committee.

3. By vote, the church appoints the nominating committee.

4. The pastor or district leader is an ex officio member and serves as chairperson of the nominating committee.

5. The nominating committee meets to prepare the list of officers that it will present to the church for approval.

6. By vote, the church appoints its officers for the ensuing year.

Work of the Nominating Committee

Work of the Nominating Committee. The chairperson should call a meeting of the committee as soon as possible after its election. With earnest prayer the committee should begin preparing a list of nominees for all offices. Nominees must be members in regular standing of the church making the appointments. The list of nominees will be presented to the church at a Sabbath service or at a specially called business meeting. In making their selections, the committee may counsel with others who are well informed.

The list of officers to be considered by the nominating committee may vary with size of membership. A larger church may determine it needs more officers. A smaller church may have fewer.

Nominating Committee to Get Consent of Prospective Officers. Having nominated persons who are faithful, loyal members of the local church, the appropriate members of the committee should inform them of their nominations and secure their consent to serve.

Members May Appear Before the Nominating Committee. Members desiring to appear before the committee to make suggestions or objections should be given opportunity to do so. After they have addressed the committee and retired from the room, the committee should consider their comments and then make its report to the church.

Nominating Committee Discussions Are Confidential. All inquiries and discussions of the committee are confidential. It is a violation of Christian ethics and the spirit of the golden rule for a member of the committee to repeat outside of the committee any personal or sensitive information discussed. To offend in this regard is reason for excluding the committee member from future participation in the work of a nominating committee. Should the necessity arise for inquiries to be made outside the committee, the chairperson should make them.

Reporting to the Church. The nominating committee’s report is presented to the church as a whole and not to the church board, which has no jurisdiction in the process. The report may be presented at a Sabbath service or at a specially called business meeting.

When the nominating committee is ready to report, the chairperson should make appropriate remarks to the church. A copy of the report should be placed in the hands of members or read aloud by the secretary of the committee. The chairperson should announce that the church will vote on the report one or two weeks later.

Every member should vote in the election of officers. Election is by majority vote of those present and voting.

Objections to the Report of the Nominating Committee. Members may object to the nominating committee’s report and should present their objections in person to the committee before the second reading of the report by making an appointment through the chairperson or pastor. Or, at the time of the second reading of the report, a member may request that the whole report be referred without discussion to the committee for further consideration. It is the usual procedure for the chairperson to accept the referral. However, if the request becomes a motion, it is nondebatable and is decided by majority vote.

The chairperson should announce when and where the committee will meet to hear objections. At that time members making objections, or any other member who desires to do so, should appear before the committee. If the election is deferred because of objections, it would be a serious matter for those raising objections to fail to appear before the committee.

After giving due consideration to the objections presented, the committee will exercise its judgment as to whether or not any change is warranted in the committee’s recommendation to the church business meeting. When the report is again presented, the church proceeds to vote on the report of the committee.

Trivial or groundless objections to any name should never be made, but if there are serious reasons that any nomination should be changed, these reasons should be stated to the nominating committee.