Thank you in advance for any insight provided on this thread. While I'm sure that this topic has probably been discussed before in this forum, I am relatively new and have not read any discussions on it so please be patient with me if this seems redundant for some of you. Our church is currently reviewing the church government set in place. During the past year, after several church-wide surveys, the idea of having an "elder board" has been discussed. Recently, I was provided with two documents -- each with a different point of view on the matter. I have only read the document that does not think an "elder board" is something that should exist in a Southern Baptist Church. The biggest reason the author had for this opinion was that it contradicts a congregational government. It would seem to me this does not have to be so, though in some churches it very well might be. I would like to know what others think about the office of "elder" and how it is different from "deacon" in the church models you mention. I am aware that many churches declare there is only one "elder" of the church and that is the Sr. Pastor. I would like to hear how elder boards have worked (or haven't worked) in your church (or churches you know about). Also, can a church still maintain a congregational gov't and have an elder board. Last, this same article referenced that the only "known" (by this author) SBC churches that had an elder board were those of the reformed theology. Do you find this to be true, or are there known churches out there with an elder board that do not adhere to reformed theology?