Do you have any sample formats or guidelines for writing competent minutes of elder meetings?


Wondering if there is an administrative handbook for Church record-keeping?  Do you have any ready to use templates of minutes for council or eder meetings?

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Here is a list that we were given earlier this year.

This was composed by a lawyer who has been dealing with lawsuits against churches in which inproper recordkeeping played a huge role.

Hope this helps

Doug Sebens

Lynden, WA.




What to Include:

*Name of the Church

*Meeting date and location

*Names of present Board Members

*Names of absent Board Members

*Names of Guests

*Time the meeting was convened and by which Board Member (usually the Chairperson)

*Approval of Agenda (which should include prior meeting minutes)

*Meeting topics and discussions

- The order of the minutes should follow the order of the agenda

*Time the meeting was adjourned


What to Leave Out

The minutes are a factual record of business. Do not include:


*Opinions or judgments: Leave out statements like "a well done report" or "a heated discussion. "

*Criticism or accolades: Criticism of members, good or bad, should not be included unless
it takes the form of an official motion. Thanks or expressions of appreciation should only
be included if there was a clear consensus of meeting participants. (For example, by

*Discussion: If the organization has opted to include discussion summaries, do not
personalize it by recording the views of individuals.

*Extended rehashing of reports: Just hit the highlights or key facts, particularly if a written
report is attached.

*Identity of voters: Unless a participant asks that their vote or abstention be recorded, don't
identify any voter by his or her position on the issue.


After the Meeting

*The Secretary types up the minutes and distributes them to the Chairperson for approval
before distribution.

*Secretary signs the Minutes once they are approved by the Chairperson and distributes
them to each Board Member (and other appropriate persons) as soon as possible after the

*Secretary files the original Minutes in the Church corporate records book or other safe
place at the Church office.