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Church Office discuss Church Trustee in the The Church forums; I was asked to be a church trustee. Can anyone give me a background of what this normally means and entails? One person told me ...

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    puritanpilgrim's Avatar
    puritanpilgrim is offline. Puritanboard Junior
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    Church Trustee

    I was asked to be a church trustee. Can anyone give me a background of what this normally means and entails? One person told me it means that I am financially required to back up problems in the church if things don't add up. That seemed a bit unrealistic. I wanted to throw it up here to get a more well rounded view.
    Aaron Josh Wright
    Grace Family Baptist, Spring TX
    http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.as...d=Aaron_Wright

  2. #2
    Kevin's Avatar
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    It is a sort of "half-deacon" in churches that pretend deacons are elders.
    TE Kevin Rogers
    MNA Church Planter
    Redeemer Community Church
    Moncton NB

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    Ivan's Avatar
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    A trustee in a Baptist church is a person that signs certain legal documents as a church representative, but is not personally responsible. They are often the ones that take care of any necessary upkeep of church property. In smaller churches they do the actual repair (etc.) work.

    At lleast that's what my tired middle-aged befuddled brain is thinking tonight.
    [FONT=Book Antiqua][SIZE=2][COLOR=black]Ivan Schoen ~ [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=Book Antiqua][SIZE=2][COLOR=black]The Church in [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=Book Antiqua][SIZE=2][COLOR=black]Poplar Grove, IL[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black]=================================[/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [LEFT][SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black][SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black]"As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives." ~ Henry David Thoreau[/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE][SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black][/LEFT]
    [/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]

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    Pilgrim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
    It is a sort of "half-deacon" in churches that pretend deacons are elders.
    Unfortunately some people just can't seem to help themselves from getting a dig in at Baptists at every turn. Is it a half-deacon in the OPC too?

    Aaron, a trustee is an office that tends to temporal affairs in churches that are incorporated. Sometimes trustees are deacons or elders, sometimes they are not.
    Chris
    Currently seeking a church--in transition
    One Pilgrims Progress |Twitter

    And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come. Luke 19:13

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    Ivan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pilgrim View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
    It is a sort of "half-deacon" in churches that pretend deacons are elders.
    Unfortunately some people just can't seem to help themselves from getting a dig in at Baptists at every turn. Is it a half-deacon in the OPC too?

    Aaron, a trustee is an office that tends to temporal affairs in churches that are incorporated. Sometimes trustees are deacons or elders, sometimes they are not.
    Good call, Chris. Your statement is very true.

    I've never heard the "half deacon" thing. Never.

    -----Added 12/17/2008 at 11:54:46 EST-----

    BTW, I've never been in a Baptist church that "pretends" deacons are elders. Never.
    [FONT=Book Antiqua][SIZE=2][COLOR=black]Ivan Schoen ~ [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=Book Antiqua][SIZE=2][COLOR=black]The Church in [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=Book Antiqua][SIZE=2][COLOR=black]Poplar Grove, IL[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black]=================================[/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [LEFT][SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black][SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black]"As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives." ~ Henry David Thoreau[/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE][SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black][/LEFT]
    [/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]

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    Kevin's Avatar
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    Hey, brothers I mean no disrespect to your (false) view of Church Gov.

    I was only commenting on the trend toward the use of non-biblical offices within the church.

    I disagre with y'all,and I will state that disagreement (in the proper forum), tonight I was just objecting to the innovaton of a new office.

    -----Added 12/18/2008 at 12:04:05 EST-----

    BTW, Bro. Chris & Pastor Ivan, I would consider it an Honour to worship God with either of you. And I was not trying to pick a fight on the church gov. issue.

    (really)
    TE Kevin Rogers
    MNA Church Planter
    Redeemer Community Church
    Moncton NB

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
    Hey, brothers I mean no disrespect to your (false) view of Church Gov.

    I was only commenting on the trend toward the use of non-biblical offices within the church.

    I disagre with y'all,and I will state that disagreement (in the proper forum), tonight I was just objecting to the innovaton of a new office.

    -----Added 12/18/2008 at 12:04:05 EST-----

    BTW, Bro. Chris & Pastor Ivan, I would consider it an Honour to worship God with either of you. And I was not trying to pick a fight on the church gov. issue.

    (really)
    I don't know about the church Ivan that pastors, but the church I belong to has elders. Sorry for the sharp response on my end as well. My point was that the position of trustee really doesn't have anything to do with the form of church government at all since it isn't a church office but is rather secular. Any church that is incorporated has trustees.

    I would consider it an honor to worship with you as well, brother.
    Chris
    Currently seeking a church--in transition
    One Pilgrims Progress |Twitter

    And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come. Luke 19:13

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    Ivan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
    Hey, brothers I mean no disrespect to your (false) view of Church Gov.

    I was only commenting on the trend toward the use of non-biblical offices within the church.

    I disagre with y'all,and I will state that disagreement (in the proper forum), tonight I was just objecting to the innovaton of a new office.

    -----Added 12/18/2008 at 12:04:05 EST-----

    BTW, Bro. Chris & Pastor Ivan, I would consider it an Honour to worship God with either of you. And I was not trying to pick a fight on the church gov. issue.

    (really)
    Okay, I hear ya! And, of course, I'd be honor to worship God with you too and one day we will worship God together, when all the "arguments" will be over.
    [FONT=Book Antiqua][SIZE=2][COLOR=black]Ivan Schoen ~ [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=Book Antiqua][SIZE=2][COLOR=black]The Church in [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=Book Antiqua][SIZE=2][COLOR=black]Poplar Grove, IL[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black]=================================[/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [LEFT][SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black][SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black]"As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives." ~ Henry David Thoreau[/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE][SIZE=2][FONT=Book Antiqua][COLOR=black][/LEFT]
    [/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]

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    Pilgrim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by puritanpilgrim View Post
    I was asked to be a church trustee. Can anyone give me a background of what this normally means and entails? One person told me it means that I am financially required to back up problems in the church if things don't add up. That seemed a bit unrealistic. I wanted to throw it up here to get a more well rounded view.
    I just noticed your sig. If you were financially liable for things at 2nd Baptist, you'd be in big trouble! I have family that attend at the Kingwood location.

    I'd ask someone there what it usually entails since it may be different in some churches.
    Chris
    Currently seeking a church--in transition
    One Pilgrims Progress |Twitter

    And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come. Luke 19:13

  10. #10
    fredtgreco's Avatar
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    A trustee is basically a director (as in board of directors) of the corporation. Non-profit directors are typically called trustees in non-church contexts as well. Therefore in legally binding matters, the Trustees must act (by resolution or meeting) not the Session or deacons. (That is the reason why the OPC directory Chris cites says that Trustees should be elders and/or deacons.)

    Any trustee (as such) that holds any ecclesiastical authority is an innovation.

    Trustees are usually (laws vary by State) covered by D&O (directors and officers) insurance carried by the corporation, and further their decisions are usually protected by the Business Judgment Rule (which does not require a perfect business decision, merely that reasonable business judgment be used in the decision).

    For more information, ask Evie - she's still in law school!
    Fred Greco
    Senior Pastor, Christ Church PCA (Katy, TX)
    Christ Church Blog

    "The heart is the main thing in true religion...It is the hinge and turning-point in the condition of man's soul. If the heart is alive to God and quickened by the Spirit, the man is a living Christian. If the heart is dead and has not the Spirit, the man is dead before God." (J.C. Ryle)

  11. #11
    TsonMariytho is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    I am a trustee at my (non-Reformed) independent Baptist church. Fred and others above are correct. It is an office created by Caesar, not by Christ, but unfortunately is not optional.

    The trustees are the people who are registered at the courthouse and/or bank as the legal representatives of the church. Even in churches that have their deacons serve as trustees (which is a nice arrangement), if there was a change of persons filling the role of deacon, there would not automatically be a change of trustees. The church has to fill out forms and such.

    In the event a non-denominational church disbands, the trustees are charged with disposal of the church property in a responsible way (some denominational churches also have set things up such that they similarly retain their autonomy with regard to local church property).

    The trustees are not legally responsible for a church's financial debts. Unless, of course, a trustee is not trustworthy, and skips off to Vegas with the offering some Sunday...

    My job as trustee is pretty much to assist the other trustees in counting the offering, signing checks to pay bills, and answering questions about the budget in congregational meetings.
    AV
    Baptist
    VA

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