United Church of Angel Fire




The name of this corporation is the United Church of Angel Fire, located at 40 West Ridge Road, Angel Fire, New Mexico, 87710.




The purpose of the United Church of Angel Fire (a non-profit organization), is to develop and encourage a religious community and association; to provide a Christian center for worship, spiritual learning, sharing and mission where all people are welcome; to provide service to those in need; and for such other purposes as may be permitted by an organization qualified for exemption from tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.


Distribution of Assets

No part of the net earnings of the corporation shall inure to the benefit of or be distributable to its members, directors, or officers, but the corporation shall be authorized and empowered to make reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in the furtherance of the purposes set forth herein. Notwithstanding any other provisions of these Bylaws, the corporation shall not carry on any other activities not permitted to be carried on:

1.      By a corporation exempt from Federal Income Tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954;

2.      By a corporation, contributions to which are deductible under Section 170 (c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954. It is intended that this corporation shall have, and continue to have, the status of an organization which is exempt from Federal Income Taxation under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954. All terms and provisions of these Bylaws of the corporation and all operations of the corporation, shall be construed, applied and carried out in accordance with such intent. Upon dissolution of the corporation, all assets remaining after payment of all liabilities of the Corporation shall be divided equally among the participating denominations, all of which shall be exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 or contributions to which are deductible under Section 170(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954.




Article III


The United Church of Angel Fire provides a Christian center for worship, spiritual learning and sharing where all people are welcome. Christian activities for children, youth and adults and community service to those in need, are important goals. In all these visions and ventures, we ask God to lead us to be divine love in action. This church shall cultivate the fellowship of other churches and cooperate with them in the work of the Kingdom of God. We are affiliated with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the Presbyterian Church (USA), the United Methodist Church, and the United Church of Christ. Control of the affairs of this church is vested in its congregation through its Church Council which shall work with the several church judicatory bodies involved to maintain an amenable relationship regarding control, assessments, reports and finances.




The United Church of Angel Fire may sponsor programs, undertake planning, research, raise funds, develop educational programs, administer property and undertake such other services and programs as may be deemed necessary to accomplish the purpose and mission of the organization.




Membership of the church congregation shall consist of those who are now members of the congregation and those who shall unite with it in one of the following ways:

1)      Confession: By confession of faith in Christ as Lord and Savior and baptism in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

2)      Transfer: This is accomplished by the individual's statement that he/she has been a member of the Christian faith, regardless of the denomination or form of baptism practiced by the church, and that he/she desires fellowship with the United Church of Angel Fire.

3)      Associate Membership: A member of any denomination of the Christian faith may enroll as an associate member with voting privileges and retains his/her regular membership elsewhere.

4)      Termination of membership may be by:

i)        Death

ii)      Transfer to another church

iii)    Withdrawal

iv)    Removal by the Church Council for inappropriate behavior.





Church Council and Officers/Board of Directors

Members: The Church Council shall consist of the Church Officers and the Ministry Area Chairs/Co-chairs:

The Church Officers are:

1)      President

2)      Vice-President (preferably two, of which one will move into the position of President when the current President’s term ends). 

3)      Treasurer

4)      Secretary

The Ministry Area Chairs/Co-chairs are:

1)      Missions Chair

2)      Fellowship Chair

3)      Memorials/Stewardship/Gifts Chair

4)      Christian Education Chair

5)      Worship Chair

6)      Property Chair

7)      Outreach / Membership

8)      Congregational Care


The President, Vice-President(s), Secretary, and Treasurer shall serve as the Church Officers, Board of Directors of the United Church of Angel Fire and the Executive Committee of the Council.


The Ministry Area chairs may have co-chairs as necessary.  The Chair(s) of each Ministry Area may select other committee members to share the tasks and facilitate backfilling the Ministry Area chair position(s) when the term of the chairs ends. Each officer and each Ministry Area will have one vote on the Council. Either of the Co-Chairs is eligible to cast that Ministry Area’s vote on Council decisions. Either one or both of the two co-chairs need to attend Council meetings. Should the Co-Chairs of a Ministry Area not be in agreement on a matter to be voted upon by the Council, the vote from that Ministry Area for that issue will be null and void.


Selection of Church Council Members: Church Officers and Ministry Area Chairs shall be elected by a majority vote of the Congregation at the annual meeting to serve a term of two years. The Officers shall be: President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer. The other members of the Council shall chair Ministry Areas as described in Article VI.


Each member of the Church Council must be a member or an associate member of the United Church of Angel Fire. Should a Council member resign for whatever reason, the Church Council may appoint another member / associate member of good standing to backfill that position until the Nominating Committee reconvenes as described below.



Nomination of Council Members: Prior to each annual meeting, the Council shall appoint two members of the Church Council and at least three members at large from the congregation to serve as a nominating committee. One of the Council members shall serve as chair of this committee. The purpose of the nominating committee is to nominate candidates to be elected as members of the Council.


The nominating committee shall consider the following qualifications in selecting nominees:

1)      Faith in and love of God and concern to bring His love to others.

2)      A desire and willingness to serve and take responsibility.

3)      Demonstration of active participation in worship, spiritual learning, sharing Christian activities and community service to those in need.


Prior to each annual congregational meeting, the Vice-President or his/her designate shall inform each potential nominee of the duties of Council members and obtain his/her consent to serve if elected.


At least two weeks prior to the annual meeting, the President of the Council will announce the nominees to the congregation at a regular Sunday worship service of the church and by email to church members.


Additional nominations may be made from the floor at the annual Congregational Meeting provided that the nominee has been advised of the duties and has consented to serve if elected. 


No council member may be elected to serve for more than four consecutive years.


An Annual Congregational Meeting shall be held during the month of August.




Meetings of the Church Council

The Church Council shall ordinarily meet every other month or more often as needed. Each member shall be notified by the Vice-President(s) of the time and place of the meeting. Notice of meetings will be made by electronic means. Council members are encouraged to call in to the council meeting if they are not able to attend in person.


The President, or Vice-President(s) in the absence of the President, may hold called meetings with proper notification to Council members. When the President and the Vice-President(s) expect to be absent from a Council meeting, one of them may appoint another Council member to moderate the meeting.


Each member of the Church Council shall be entitled to appoint a person to attend a single monthly meeting in the member’s absence. Notice of this appointment is to be made by e-mail or letter sent to the Secretary. The Council member may appoint a committee representative who will have voice, but no vote. In addition, a current Council member should be appointed to serve as a voting proxy.


Any meetings of the Church Council and its Ministry Areas may be held by, or participated in, by telephone or through any electronic means which allows for simultaneous aural communication among all participating members. A majority of the members of the Church Council (including telephone/electronic participation and members represented by a proxy) shall constitute a quorum at any meeting.




Duties and Responsibilities of Church Council and Officers

The Church Council is responsible for the interpretation, coordination and execution of the programs of the church. The Church Officers shall act as officers of the corporation. The responsibility of the Church Officers shall be:

1)      President:

i)        Preside at all congregational and council meetings

ii)      Serve as an ex-officio member of all Ministry Areas

iii)    Appoint members to ad hoc committees the Council may establish

iv)    Serve as official spokesperson of the church                                                                                  

2)      Vice-President(s):

i)        Perform the duties of the President in his/her absence

ii)      Provide orientation and job descriptions for newly-elected Council members

iii)    Coordinate with the Pastor in advertising, interviewing and selecting personnel for paid staff positions, arrange for new hire on-boarding, monitor staff performance, establish compensation, and oversee the Pastor as head of staff personnel.

iv)    Along with one or two other Council members, conduct an annual performance review of the Pastor and recommend terms of call for the following year.

3)      Secretary:

i)        Keep a written record of all council and congregational meetings

ii)      Coordinate with the Treasurer to file any documents necessary to keep the church as a nonprofit organization

iii)    Correspond in all matters regarding the Council and church

4)      Treasurer:

i)        Establish and oversee financial controls that ensure the church’s assets are safeguarded and that the church staff is not placed in apparent conflict of interest situations.

ii)      Oversee the payment of staff compensation and all bills and other liabilities authorized by the Church Council, the accurate accounting of these payments, the accurate accounting of all receipts and gifts to the church and provide an accurate reporting of financial transactions at each Council meeting and an annual report for presentation at the congregational meeting.

iii)    Participates with the President and Vice-President in the preparation of the annual fiscal year budget (and any revisions made to the budget during the year) which is presented to the Council for endorsement prior to presentation to the congregation at the annual meeting for approval.

iv)    Recommend members of the church to serve on a Finance Committee to provide advice on financial matters

v)      Responsible for arranging internal audits and reviews when appropriate




Termination of Tenure of Office

The tenure of office of any of the officers may be terminated by any of the following actions:

1)      A resignation submitted in writing to the Council.

2)      Transfer of membership from this to another congregation or withdrawal of full-time or part-time residence from this area.

3)      By a two-thirds vote of the congregation present at a meeting which due notice has been given as provided in Article Xl of a resolution recommended to the congregation by a majority of the Council declaring an officer's tenure of office terminated for cause.




Church Employees

Employees of the church shall be selected by the Church Council excepting the ordained clergy, whose selection shall be the responsibility of the congregation.


Ordained clergy shall be chosen by the church as hereinafter provided:

1)      A pulpit committee to consist of not less than five members, no more than two of whom may be current council members, shall be appointed by the President of the Council upon notice of resignation or termination of the current pastor.

2)      The pulpit committee shall recommend to the Council prospective clergy who shall be a member in good standing of and accountable to one of the participating denominations. The recommendation must be accepted by at least a two-thirds majority of members present and voting in a regular or special called meeting of the Council, and the recommendation must also be approved by all participating denominations.

3)      The Church Council shall recommend the prospective clergy to the congregation. The recommendation of the Council must be accepted by at least a two-thirds majority of members present and voting in a regular or special congregational meeting before a call may be extended.

4)      The term of employment shall be for an indefinite period and may be terminated by either party.


Resignation of clergy shall be handled in the following steps:

1)      Voluntary resignation shall be submitted to the Church Council in writing. A consultation between the clergy and the President of the Council subsequent to bringing this matter to the Council is encouraged but not mandatory. 

2)      Following action on the resignation by the Church Council, the President shall announce the action to the congregation.


Removal of clergy:

1)      Removal of the clergy may be initiated by action of the congregation upon the recommendation of the Church Council. Removal procedures of the denomination of which the clergy is a member will be followed.



Meetings of the Congregation

The annual meeting of the congregation shall be held in August. This meeting shall be for the purpose of presenting the annual budget, approving the pastor’s terms of call, and electing Council members.


Special meetings of the congregation may be called by the President of the Council or upon application by petition of one-third of the membership.


Notice of all official meetings of the congregation shall be announced at a regular Sunday worship service of the church at least two weeks in advance of the meeting and by email to church members. Purpose of the meeting shall be indicated in each notice.



Rules of Order

The rules contained in the most current edition of Robert's Rules of Order shall govern all meetings of the Church Council and the general membership in all cases in which they apply and in which they are not inconsistent with these bylaws.




The Bylaws of this organization may be amended or revised only by an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the membership present at a congregational meeting called for the purpose of amending the Bylaws. Any proposed amendment to the Bylaws must be submitted in writing at a regular Council meeting, but cannot be acted upon until the next regular meeting of the Council, at which time an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the Council members present shall be required in order to call a meeting of the membership of the congregation for the purpose of voting upon the proposed by-law amendment. Written notice of the proposed amendment shall be emailed and made available on the church website to members of the congregation not less than two (2) weeks prior to the congregational meeting to be called for the purpose of voting upon the proposed amendment. An affirmative vote of two thirds of the members present at said congregational meeting shall be required to adopt the proposed amendment to the Bylaws.





The Bylaws will be reviewed once every three years or as needed.




The indemnification of officers and directors of this corporation shall be such as is provided in paragraph 53-8-26A, NMSA 1978. In all cases not covered by subsection A of that Section, the corporation hereby indemnifies any director or officer or former director or officer of the corporation against expense and cost (including attorney's fees) actually and necessarily incurred by his/her in connection with any claim asserted against him/her, by action of court or otherwise, by reason of his/her being or having been a director or officer of this corporation, except in relation to matters as to which s/he shall have been guilty of actual negligence or misconduct in the performance of his/her duties as director or officer. The church will provide indemnification insurance for the Board, Pastor, and employees.





Approved: Gordon Cox, President                                                                             August 25, 2019




Attest: Ruth Ann Carpenter, Secretary                                                                      August 25, 2019



Copyright © 2020  United Church of Angel Fire • Angel Fire, New Mexico • 575-377-1559