Bylaws of Unity Worldwide Ministries of the Southeast Region
1.01 PURPOSE. The purpose of this corporation, Southeast Unity Ministries, Inc., hereinafter”Corporation,” will be to promote and encourage the spiritual growth of the Southeast area Centers, Churches, and Study Groups through its ministers, leaders, and that through this association and fellowship we may bring forth an increasingly effective presentation of the teachings of Jesus Christ, as interpreted by Unity School of Christianity of Unity Village, Missouri, and Unity world wide ministries.
1.02 PROGRAM. In the accomplishment of its purpose, there will be called a regular annual meeting of the Corporation at such time and place as may be decided by the Executive Committee and approved by the majority vote of the members present voting.
2.01 LEADERSHIP. We acknowledge Jesus Christ to be our leader and teacher, invisible though ever present, and His teachings our guide. In all things we follow the inspiration and illumination of the Christ indwelling as taught by Him. The Bible will be our authorized textbook.
3.01 QUALIFICATIONS. Those persons eligible for membership are those persons who are Ministers, Spiritual Leaders and Licensed Unity Teachers in good standing with the Association of Unity Churches. All of the above must be in good standing with unity world wide ministries within the states or territories of the southeastern region as listed in the Association of Unity Churches Yearbook. In addition, consideration will be given to all qualified members in states adjoining the Southeastern Region whose ministry borders states within the Southeast Region and who apply for membership to the Corporation by reason of proximity and who are not presently served by other regional conferences.
4.01 EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE. The affairs of the Corporation will be administered by the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee will meet annually during the Annual Regional Conference.
4.02 OFFICERS. Officers of the Corporation will consist of President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Regional Representative, who will also serve as the ministry consultant, Judicatory Representative and the Licensed Teacher Representative. All of these officers will be credentialed Unity leaders in good standing with Unity world wide ministries.
4.03 ELECTION. A Nominating Committee made up of four ordained Unity ministers, who are members of the Corporation, will present a slate of nominees. The Nominee for each vacancy will be contacted and asked to prayerfully consider this leadership responsibility prior to acceptance of candidacy. To preserve the Conference Body’s rights to have representative leaders, however, the right to nominate candidates from the floor is maintained – with the understanding that floor nominations should only be made in cases where the Nominating Committee’s recommendations are strongly considered ill-advised, since nominations from the floor do not provide sufficient time for the candidate to fully and prayerfully consider the commitment to service. Further, the Nominating Committee (when operating appropriately) carefully considers all aspects of the Board and Region’s needs and examines the level of commitment which has been demonstrated by the candidate it recommends.
In all elections, where there is more than one candidate nominated for one vacancy, a written ballot is required and, in this event, a plurality will elect.
4.03A Nominating Committee. The members of the Nominating Committee will be selected as follows: One member will be chosen from the Executive Committee by that committee; One member of the Corporation will be elected by the eligible membership for the following years committee; One member will be the President of the Executive Committee. These three persons will select a fourth members, not a member of the Executive Committee, from the Corporation to act as chairperson of the Nominating Committee.
1. The ministry consultant will also serve as the regional representative
2. The remaining officer(s) of the Executive Committee will be the nominees who receive the highest number of votes to the Executive Committee.
3. The elected Board will select the President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer from within the elected pool of available officers.
4.03C Qualifications. The qualifications of the Regional Representative will be as defined by Unity World Wide Ministries. The remaining nominee(s) to the Executive Committee will be credentialed Unity leaders in good standing with unity world wide ministries. All nominees will be present and voting at the meeting in which the election is held.
4.03D Term of Office. With the exception of the ministry consultant, all members of the Executive Committee will serve terms of three (3) years each. None of the six members of the Executive Committee will serve more than two (2) consecutive terms without an interval of one (1) year before serving another term.
4.04 TERMS OF OFFICE. With the exception of the ministry consultant, the term of office for all members of the Executive Committee will be for three (3) years, not to exceed two (2) consecutive terms.
4.04A In the event of a vacancy of any member of the Executive Committee, the remaining officers will elect by majority vote, as soon as possible, a person who meets the qualifications and will fulfill the term.
4.05 DUTIES AND POWERS. The Executive Committee will transact all fiscal business, provide appropriate programs for its closed, public, and retreat meeting, and bring before the conference body any suggestions and recommendations for pursuing the purpose of this organization as set forth in ARTICLE I of these By-laws. It will report in full all actions taken at its meetings and furnish a true financial report to the regional membership. It will be specifically charged with the conservation and use of the assets of this Corporation and will fulfill the desires and intent of the conference bodies with promptness and dispatch. It will be responsible for the employment and performance of employees of the Southeast Region and will be empowered to terminate the employment of any employee.
4.05A The President will be the Chairperson of the Executive Committee and will preside at all meetings of the committee and of the corporate meetings of the Corporation. She/He will have the power to perform all duties incident to the office of the President. She/He will have such additional power as may be delegated to her/him by the Corporation. She/He will sign for the Corporation all corporate records, instruments, contracts, and conveyances on which the President’s name is required by law. The President will appoint or cause to be employed a parliamentarian at every annual meeting of the Corporation or at any other Corporate meeting called for special purposes.
4.05B The Vice President will perform all the duties of the President in the event of the Presidents inability or refusal to assume the responsibility. When assuming the responsibility, the Vice President will have all the powers of and be subject to all the restrictions upon the President. The Vice President will perform such other duties as may be assigned to her/him by the President.
4.05C The Secretary will keep, or cause to be kept, accurate minutes of all decisions made and actions taken by the Executive Committee within one month following any meeting. She/He will prepare and file reports and may be called upon to perform other duties as requested by the committee. The Secretary will hold the corporate seal showing the State in which the Corporation is incorporated.
4.05D The Treasurer will take custody of and be accountable for all income and other assets of the corporation including gifts and bequests intended for any service, activity and function of the Corporation. The Treasurer will maintain, or have maintained, an accurate set of records indicating all income and disbursements, the value of all equipment and other assets; she/he will pay, or have paid, all bills and compensations to employees promptly. Financial statements, Balance Sheet and an Income/Expense Statement will be sent to the Executive Board Committee prior to all business meetings.
4.05E The Regional Representative, who also serves as the Ministry Consultant, will meet the qualifications as recommended by Unity World Wide Ministries. She/he will be an ex-officio member, with vote, of the Executive Committee of the Corporation. The Regional Representative serves as a link between Unity World Wide Ministries, the Region he/she represents, and the ministries within that region. He/she serves as a member of the Association’s Standards Ministry Team. He/she serves in the review process regarding the expansion of new ministries in the Region (to approve or disapprove new works). The Ministry Zonsultant/Regional Representative may not vote on issues referable to their position or compensation as the Ministry Consultant.
4.05F The Judicatory Representative will serve on the executive committee without a vote. They serve as the “gatekeeper” of the Credentialed Leader/Ministry Review Team (CLMRT) process of Unity World Wide Ministries. In this capacity, the Judicatory Representative (JR) determines whether a complaint filed against a credentialed leader (a minister, Licensed Unity Teacher, spiritual leader, or Field Licensing candidate) or ministry warrants a full CLMRT review. The JR also handles requests by ministers for reinstatement to active ministry. Because of his or her CLMRT training, a JR is qualified to serve on a CLMRT Case Review Team. It is best that a JR not serve on a Case Review Team in his or her region.
4.05G The Licensed Unity Teacher representative will be someone who meets the qualifications as recommended by Unity World Wide Ministries Their duties and responsibilities are as outlined in their job description which will be reviewed and approved by the Executive Committee.
4.06 VACANCIES. The resignation of an officer on the Executive Committee may be submitted voluntarily in writing or it may be requested. Any member of the Executive committee may be removed by a majority vote of the committee members except the Regional Representative. The Regional Representative may be removed from office only by a majority vote of the conference body at a meeting that clearly states that issue as part of its agenda and notice is given thirty days in advance.
4.07 COMPENSATION AND LIABILITY. With the exception of the ministry consultant, who also serves as the regional representative, the Executive Committee will serve without compensation, but may be reimbursed for expenses of carrying out their duties. Additionally, they may be reimbursed for the expense of litigation arising out of the performance of their duties as specified in the Articles of Incorporation and By-laws.
No Officer or Executive Committee Member will have any liability whatsoever to any person in connection with their conduct of the affairs of the Corporation, or the management, investment, or disbursement of corporate funds, in the absence of fraud or gross negligence.
4.08 COMMITTEES. From time to time the Executive Committee chairperson and the Regional Representative may appoint any committee or committees for any purpose or purposes to the extent lawful, which may have such powers as will be specified in the resolution or resolutions of appointment. The Executive Committee chairperson and the Regional Representative will be ex-officio, with vote, members of all committees.
4.09 CONSENT OF EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE WITH MEETING. Any actions required by law to be taken at a meeting of the members of the Executive Committee, or any other action which may be taken at a meeting may be taken without a meeting if a consent in writing, setting forth the action so taken, will be signed by all of the members of the Executive Committee. The consent will be filed with the Secretary of the Corporation.
5.01 MEETINGS OF THE MEMBERSHIP. Members present and voting at the annual Southeast Unity Region, Inc. conference will approve the time and place for the following annual regional conference. The program will be planned in cooperation with the Executive Committee who will give final approval to the program.
Special meetings of the Region may be called at any time at the discretion of the Chairperson of the Executive Committee or the Regional Representative or of fifteen (15) members. Written notice of special meetings must be sent to all members of the Corporation and postmarked at least fourteen (14) days prior to such a meeting.
Robert‘s Rule of Order will govern all business meetings of the Corporation. The Chairperson of the Executive Committee will appoint a parliamentarian for all regular and special Conference meetings.
A quorum will consist of the members present and voting at any meeting of which all members have been notified in writing at least fourteen (14) days prior to the meeting.
6.01 The Corporation will be perpetuated and supported by the tithes and offerings of the members of this organization, contributions from Centers and Churches, legacies, bequests, endowments, and/or surplus income from events sponsored by the Region.
6.02 No sale or pledge of real property owned by the Corporation will be made without the affirmative vote of at least two-thirds (2/3) of the voting body present at a Conference or a special meeting. In addition, a notice and explanation of such a proposal must be sent by first class mail to all eligible voting members and postmarked at least ten (10) days prior to the meeting.
6.03 No agreements, contracts or obligations involving money, credit or financial liability can be entered into without the unanimous approval of all the officers, unless such agreements, contracts or obligations have been approved by action of the Conference body.
6.04 Any sale or transfer of any stock, bond, security, or any other property standing in the name of the Corporation will be valid only if signed by the Corporation acting through any two officers. Any transfer signed in this manner, having affixed thereon the seal of the Corporation, will in all respects bind the Corporation as fully and completely as if each transaction had been authorized by a specific vote of the members, and any person, firm or corporation to who a copy of these Bylaws certified by the Secretary/Treasurer will be entitled to rely thereon until notified of their repeal.
6.05 Any expenditure exceeding FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS ($5,000.00) in any one fiscal year or a transaction that will bind the Corporation for more than FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS ($5,000.00) over a period of years, other than for normal Corporation business, shall be submitted to the voting body present for approval. A majority vote is required for such approval.
6.06 Any compensated employees of the Corporation shall be hired, supervised, and discharged by a majority vote of the Executive Committee. All compensation packages shall be by arrangement with the Executive Committee and held confidential. Supervision of compensated employees shall be defined in a manual on Policy and Procedures to be created and kept up to date by the Executive Committee.
7.01 The By-laws will be amended only by a three-fourths (3/4) vote of members present and voting at any regular or special meeting of the Corporation. All proposed amendments must be sent to all persons eligible to vote at least thirty (30) days prior to the beginning of a Conference where voting on the proposed amendments will take place. The proposed amendments will normally be sent by e-mail, or via the US Postal service for those who request it
8.01 The fiscal year of the Corporation will begin on the first (1st) day of January of each year and end on the thirty first (31th) day of December next succeeding.
These By-laws will take affect and control the operation of the Corporation from the time and date of their adoption.
Last Amendment 1/18/2015 Rev. Jean DeBarbeiris, Secretary