About

Constitution
of the

Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi

formerly (Mississippi Baptist Association)

Article I — Name

Section 1: This body shall be known as the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi (formerly Mississippi Baptist Association).

Article II — Object

The object of the association shall be:

Section 1: To aid in the preaching of the Gospel throughout the world.

Section 2: To promote fellowship among the churches of the association.

Section 3: To cooperate in benevolent and educational activities consistent with the Scripture and beneficial to the purposes of this association.

Article III — Principles Of Cooperation

Section 1: This body shall be composed of such regular Baptist churches as may adhere to the Doctrinal Statement and Article I of this Constitution.

Section 2: A church desiring membership in this body shall present a petitionary letter with a statement that in regular conference she has adopted the Doctrinal Statement and Constitution of the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi.

Section 3: This Association shall recognize the sovereignty of each local church.

Section 4: This Association shall exercise no ecclesiastical authority over any church.

Section 5: A two-thirds majority vote shall be required for receiving a new church into membership.

Section 6: Each church of this association shall be entitled to three messengers duly elected from her membership.

Section 7: Each church shall be the sole judge of the qualifications of her messengers.

Section 8: This Association shall recognize the Scripture as the final authority in all things pertaining to the work of this body.

Article IV — Officers

Section 1: The officers of this association shall be: President, First Vice-president, Second Vice-president, one Recording Secretary, one Assistant Recording Secretary and a Di-rector of Public Information.

Section 2: The presiding officers of this association are as follows: President, First Vice-president, Second Vice-president, elected annually to assume the duties of the respective officers at the conclusion of the annual session in which they are elected, whose term shall not exceed two consecutive years.

Section 3: Duties of officers:
A. The president shall preside over the business meeting of the association and shall be charged with keeping order, governed by parliamentary procedure.

B. The vice-presidents shall assist the president in the above named responsibilities and shall preside in the absence of the president.

C. The recording secretary shall record all business transactions of the association and shall publish the minutes in book form. These are to be distributed to the churches as soon as possible since these minutes shall constitute a report to the churches.

D. The recording secretary shall also serve as the treasurer of the minute and associational fund of the association.

E. The assistant recording secretary shall assist in all the duties of the recording secretary.

F. The duties of the director of public information shall be to work with the program committee in planning for the annual meeting of the association and to publicize the work of the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi.

Article V — Time Of Meeting

(Annual Session)

Section 1: The association shall hold her annual meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday following the third (3rd) Sunday of October, unless determined otherwise by the messengers in annual session.

Section 2: The President shall be empowered to call this body into special session in an emergency to deal with matters for which the session was called.

Article VI — Schedule Of Meeting

Section 1: The churches composing the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi shall meet one time between annual session.

Section 2: The time of meeting shall be Tuesday after the third Sunday in May at 9:30 a.m., unless determined otherwise by the messengers. The October meeting shall be the annual association.

Section 3: Each church may elect three messengers as set forth by example in II Corinthians, Chapter Eight (8).

Section 4: The purpose of the meetings shall be to:
A. Hear and approve departmental reports.
B. To implement (carry out) the plans and objectives of each department as adopted in annual session.

Section 5: The officers elected in the annual meeting shall serve as officers of the meetings.

Section 6: The order of reports shall be the same as the preceding annual session.

Article VII — Committees

Section 1: Nominating Committee:

A. The association shall choose a nominating committee composed of six members. These shall be elected by nomination from the floor in regular session.

B. These shall serve for terms of two years on a staggered basis so that three member’s terms expire each year. These members are not to succeed themselves.

C. This committee will have the responsibility of presenting nominees for all standing committees or trustees and shall diligently seek to give equal representation to all sections of the state.

D. A member of this committee will not be presented as a nominee.

Section 2: Program Committee:

A. The program committee shall consist of the president, the recording secretary, and the head of each department listed in Article VIII, Section 1.

B. This committee shall also be responsible for planning the agenda of the annual session. The department reporting first each year shall go to the bottom of the list for next year, and thus each department moves up one number each year.

C. The recording secretary shall be authorized to cover any expenses of the Program Committee from the minute and associational fund.

Section 3: Committee on Digest of Letters and Finance:

The president shall appoint a committee of three to receive letters and finances sent by the churches. This committee shall be appointed one (1) year in advance and their names shall be printed in the minutes. In the event a member is absent, the president shall appoint substitutes.

Section 4: Salary Committee:
A. All officials of the association are to be paid according to the designation of this association in annual session.

B. The chairman of all committees having salaried personnel under their supervision shall serve as a committee on salaries to make recommendations to the association on salary ceilings for all department heads and their assistants who are elected by the association.

C. In case of an emergency between sessions of the association, this committee will receive and make recommendations subject to approval of the association.

D. This Committee shall publish annually in the minute book, the salary and benefits of department heads.

Article VIII — Departments Of Work

Section 1: This association sponsors the following departments of work:

1. State Missions

2. Southeastern Baptist College

3. Mississippi Baptist Children’s Home

4. Christian Publications

5. Youth Department

6. Music

7. Commissions:

  1. Mississippi Baptist Commission on History and Archives.
  2. Moral Action of Mississippi
  3. Mississippi Baptist Commission on Senior Adult Ministry

8. Auxiliaries:

  1. State Brotherhood
  2. State Women’s Missionary Auxiliary

9. Foundations

  1. Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi Foundation, Inc.

Section 2: The Special Emphasis for the departments shall be: Publications — January; History and Archives — February; Youth — March; Missions — April and May; College — July and August; Moral Action of Mississippi — September; Children’s Home — October and November.

Article IX — Election Of Heads Of Departments

Section 1: The head of each department shall be recommended to the association by the trustees or committee of each department or any messenger for consideration and election in Annual Session or a special called session for filling such position and shall be elected indefinitely.

Section 2: If a vacancy occurs, the trustees or committee of each department shall be responsible to maintain said department until a qualified person can be recommended to the association.

Section 3: Any department head that violates the trust of his office may be released by the trustees or committee to which he is subservient without further financial obligations; said action of trustees or committee to be reviewed at the next session of the association.

Section 4: Each Department head shall furnish the Nominating Committee a list of the Trustees, (1) who are eligible for re-election, (2) who need to be replaced, (3) who are serving an unfulfilled term. This information shall be given to the Nominating Committee by August 15 of each year.

Article X — Standing Committee Or Trustees

Section 1: This association, in annual session, shall elect committeemen or trustees as specified in each department by-laws.

Section 2: All standing committeemen or trustees shall be elected on a staggered basis for three year terms, one third being elected each year. No one may serve on more than one standing committee. The number of three year terms a committeeman may serve on that committee shall be limited to two (2). After a one year absence from that committee the former member shall become eligible for reelection to that committee. A standing committee is the board of trustees or committeemen of any department or commission listed in Article VIII, section 1.

Section 3: No one who is an employee of the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi shall serve on a committee or board of trustees under whose supervision he may come except legal status would require otherwise.

Section 4: The duties of said committeemen or trustees are set forth in the by-laws of each department.

Section 5: Any standing committeeman or trustee of any department who misses three (3) consecutive meetings will be automatically replaced.

Article XI — Amendments

The Constitution of the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi may be amended by the two-thirds majority vote of the messengers present and voting at any annual session of the association. When the amendment is desired, it will be offered in writing in any session, morning, afternoon or evening; its adoption moved and seconded, and thoroughly discussed. At a subsequent session the vote will be taken without further discussion.

The by-laws of the various departments of associational work of the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi may be amended in annual session in like manner as an amendment to the Constitution as set forth above. However, the by-laws can also be amended in midyear sessions when the churches have had prior notification of the proposed changes in the “Mississippi Baptist” and/or by letter sent to each church of the association. The same procedure of voting on the amendment will be used in a midyear session as in an annual session.

Rules and regulations established by the Constitution, or the by-laws of any department, can be suspended at any session of the association. The suspension is to be for a specified period of time and the need for the suspension is to be stated. A two-thirds majority vote is required.

The Doctrinal Statement of the BMA of Mississippi may be amended by 2/3 majority vote of the messengers present and voting at any annual session of the association. In case the proposed amendment is referred to the churches, and the churches send their vote by letter, or by instructed messengers, and 2/3 of the churches thus reporting express the desire for the amendment, the amendment shall pass. No particular form will be required.