I won’t be reading it carefully, but even a casual perusal shows a dramatic and sweeping (and really, really annoying) change at the national level. In the past, if a district wanted to amend their bylaws, they would submit the amendment to the Commission on Constitutional Matters for approval. The CCM would look it over, and send it back to them with “suggested” revisions. (Revisions which had to be incorporated if the district wanted to make the change. So “suggestion” is a pretty mild word.)
Then, they would look over the bylaws to see if there were any bylaws that conflicted with new bylaws the synod had passed. So, instead of one or two resolutions, we would have three or four resolutions asking us to “fix” our bylaws.
Nowadays, apparently the CCM doesn’t have enough to do. Because they go through every single bylaw each convention, recommending changes at various random points. The really funny part (not really “funny hah-hah”) is that the changes they are recommending in certain cases are HOW THE BYLAWS WERE BEFORE THEY MESSED WITH THEM IN THE FIRST PLACE!!! So, our bylaws were fine. Three or six years ago they told us to change them. Meekly we did. And now, with no bylaw changes at all at the synod level, they are telling us to change them back.
What does this mean? Well, perhaps I should change my name from “Country Preacher” to “Curmudgeon Preacher”, but I don’t appreciate this waste of our time and effort just to please an un-elected board that has too much time on their hands. I will be voting no on every single one of them on principle, and encouraging others to do the same.
They are even suggesting changes to our Articles of Incorporation – which have been in place for 48 years. It seems they are on a power trip of some sort. No matter what we say, in another three years, they will come back with more changes just because they can. I say no. They can tell us we need to. But no changes are made until we agree. Which means we can just tell them we won’t do it. Not because the changes are good or bad, but because they are unnecessary, a waste of time, and we have better things to do. And the sooner the CCM gets that message, the sooner they will stop wasting the time of 35 districts.
Because the work of the church is theology. So, let’s focus on that instead.