Dual Membership

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Salty, Dec 13, 2008.

  1. Salty

    Salty
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    Suppose someone wanted to join your church, but they told you they would maintain membership in another denominational :saint: church ie Methodist, COC, Presbyterian, ect.

    What would be your response to them.

    What would be the reason they want to maintain dual membership - you name it....

    Your thoughts???:1_grouphug:
     
  2. canadyjd

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    As long as you were sure that they had like minded beliefs and understood the obligations and expectations of their membership at your church, I wouldn't care about "dual membership". I see nothing in scripture to forbid it.

    peace to you:praying:
     
  3. Jim1999

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    While my wife believed all the doctrines essential to a baptist church, she remained to this day an Anglican. Now this was a Baptist pastor's wife!

    She never took communion except in one church where the deacons and members insisted she partake with the church family............Oh yes, she was immersed.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  4. canadyjd

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    At a church I was a member of years ago, there was a man who had been baptized as a child by his father (a pentecostal preacher). Although he was very faithful, and a willing worker, he never "joined" because the pastor insisted he be "rebaptized" (pentecostal baptism was "invalid" because they believed you could lose your salvation.)

    He didn't want to be "rebaptized" because he felt it would dishonor his father.

    He eventually left the church because he felt people were hounding him about the baptism issue.

    I felt his reason for not being baptized was misguided in that he readily admitted he wasn't saved at the time of his father's baptism. I also believed it was an issue between him and God. I would have been quite comfortable with him as member just as he was and left Holy Spirit to convict him of the need for baptism if he needed to be convicted.

    peace to you:praying:
     
  5. Tom Butler

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    The pastor was correct, but it was wrong for anyone to hound the man about it.
     
  6. Dr. Bob

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    People may attend our church as much as they desire without being members. They may remain members elsewhere or nowhere. This is a personal matter.

    But if they desire to join our body, they cannot be members elsewhere. We woud write to their church and ask their membership there be moved t our church.

    This is a courtesy to the other church who may have quorum rules for voting, etc, and to let the elders there know that elders at our church will now give spiritual guidance.
     
  7. Dale-c

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    The only reason I can see for a legitimate "dual membership" is for a person who must reside in two different places at times.

    I used to know some people who attended a baptist church in Indiana during the summer but attended a different church in Florida during the Winter.

    I don't see any other option for retired people who go south for the winter or for people with seasonal occupations.

    Come to think of it though, in the above illustration I am not certain that they were actual members of the Florida church. They may perhaps have just been members of the Indiana church.
     
  8. Tom Butler

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    I see church membership as a covenant relationship, and a commitment not only to the church as a body, but to the individuals who make up that congregation. I'm not sure that commitment can be divided between or among congregations.

    If dual membership is okay, then why not membership in three churches? Or four?

    There is something nagging to me about individuals who want to fellowship with a congregation, but on their own terms. And there's something nagging about a church which will let them.

    Same situation with baptism. Picture someone asking for membership who says, oh, by the way, I was sprinkled. I know you immerse, but my baptism is just as valid.

    The church says, oh, okay. Where were you baptized?

    Uh, at the Kingdom hall.

    Oh, okay.

    Ridiculous, you say? Once you've made the individual the arbiter of the terms of his church membership, his baptism, or anything else, then what's your complaint?
     
  9. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    We have what we call associate members at our church. These are non-voting members who are allowed to serve on church committees and work as Sunday school teachers, youth workers, sing in the choir, etc.

    We developed the associate member idea because we have a large population of seasonal residents. These people are primarily retired and live in Florida October to May and here in NC May to October. We had a number of these seasonal residents who were attending our church and wanted to serve but we had made church membership a requirement for serving in many ways. Many of these seasonal residents were members of churches in Florida, still considered that their primary residence, and did not want to move their membership.

    We also have some associate members who hold membership in other churches for other reasons, perhaps respect for their parents or heritage. I know one lady who is married to a member of our church but maintains her membership in the church where she grew up and her father pastors. It is not a baptist church.

    We allow associate members who are not baptized.
     
  10. Salty

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    So suppose an associate member who was sprinkled, is teaching a class bout baptism...


    Tenkmaker also said:
    Code:
     
    We also have some associate members who hold membership in other churches for other reasons, perhaps respect for their parents or heritage. I know one lady who is married to a member of our church but maintains her membership in the church where she grew up and her father pastors. It is not a baptist church.
    
    That wouldn't happen in our church. Membership is a covenant in your LOCAL church, of responsibility. Heritage is nice but not effective service.
    My home church is in Virginia - and I think (and pray) of them often. But I would not do them one bit of good by being on their membership roll. My membership is in my current church.

    Salty

    ps suppose we could do that politically, move to another county and have "associate citizenship"
     
    #10 Salty, Dec 15, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2008
  11. superwoman8977

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    My home church will always be my mom and dads church back home. No matter where I live in the world a portion of my tithe will be sent there as well. If and when I decide to join my church I attend I will have dual membership or I will not take the classes, its as simple as that. At the moment I attend my church here in Indy and I am a member of the church back home.
     
  12. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    Well they would not be doing that, but say they wanted to volunteer in the nursury or teach at VBS, woult that be ok?
    We do have that. We have people with dual citizenship, work visa, education visas. There are all kinds of ways people can live and work in one country and still be citizens of another.

    What about a college student Salty? If you had a college student from another state who was living there to go to school, and lets say they wanted to work in children's church. Would you make them give up their church membership back home?
     
  13. Salty

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    They are not giving up membership, they are transfering membership.

    As far as the college student - yes, he would have to join-
     
  14. Jim1999

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    I guess we need to ask what is the purpose of membership in a local church?

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  15. Dale-c

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    I agree Jim. I am baffled that Superwoman thinks she can still have a membership at a church she does not attend.

    I would say that is no membership at all.

    As I and others have said, there are people who travel and thus must attend two churches but to have a de facto membership at one place while having an official membership where you do not attend is not proper at all.

    I might add that I would fault the churches who allow those to be on their membership roles to remain when they do not attend.
    I support those congregations that require a minimum attendance to be a member.
     
  16. Jim1999

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    To my way of thinking, a twice-born person is already a member of the Kingdom of God. Membership in a local church opens avenues of service, a vote to keep the assembly faithful to the word, a sense of closer fellowship with God's people. In some Baptist churches it makes communion open to them.

    I have already said that my wife remained an Anglican throughout my ministry. She never joined any of my churches as a member. She was involved in the churches at the request of the deacons and members. She didn't take communion, except at one church where the deacons insisted she do this. She was immersed in the Church of England as an adult believer. They do practice immersion where it is requested.

    Looking back, I can't recall if I ever became a member of the actual church I pastored. My membership remained with my home church as a non-voting member. When I came home for a visit, I was welcome as a member-at-large.

    At one rural church of 250 members we actually had more lutherans in attendance than baptists. They were twice-born lutherans, but there was no Missouri synod lutheran churches within 1000 miles. They took an active part in the church functions, some even were immersed whilst with us. Yes, some even taught Sunday School, following Baptist Sunday School lessons. They were a definite asset to the local church. The situation existed before I went there and who was I to interfere with that?

    I have mixed feelings about the importance of local church membership, poor, poor Baptist that I am.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  17. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    I think Jim has the right question here.

    As associate members we take believers that we recognize for whatever reason want to keep their home church membership and accept them into our congregation for the time they spend with us. I don't have the bylaws in front of me but I know it says we accept them under our ministry to care for their spiritual and physical needs and to provide for their spiritual direction and discipline. I know that line about discipline is in there because it was a source of debate, if associate members would be subject to church discipline and we decided they should be.

    As associate members they do not have voting rights but may participate and lead ministries which means the church conducts background checks and covers them under our liability insurance. As we can put them in positions of leadership they must also be held accountable to the church. They must agree with our statement of faith.

    Associate members are all members in good standing of another church somewhere. If they had no other church membership then they would just become regular members.

    Someone like Superwoman who wants to keep her membership in her home church I would have no problem with. She has moved and things have changed. She wants to worship and join with our congregation, she wants to serve the Lord where she is. But we are still not family yet and this is not home, not yet. Perhaps the time will come when that will change.

    We would not make a student or other temporary member give up their home church in order to serve in ours. We would be glad they were here.
     
  18. superwoman8977

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    Why cant I have my membership at my church back home? I still tithe a portion of my tithe every month and when I am home with my parents (usually once a month) I attend church there. I also attend special events at the church as my schedule permits. I love my home church and I have been there since I was born so why would I want to transfer my membership? Its just like I still have an account at my hometown bank both checking and savings. I also have an account here in Indy but I have had my account since I was in the 6th grade. I thought the whole point of a church was to find a home and I have definitely found a home in my church back home. I moved away (4hrs away) because of work but I still have very strong ties with the church and with my friends from there.
     
  19. sag38

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    Because you cannot be involved in your home church. You should not be involved in voting making decisions concerning the overall life of the church. That's a right that should only be extended to active members not some member who holds sentimental ties to a church that he or she doesn't even attend except on special occasions.
     
  20. Dale-c

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    sag38, thanks, that was my point.
     

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