AGM’s are a thing that most Churches need to do and sometimes they can be like pulling teeth out, especially when having enough members turn up.
Depending on the corporation structure of the Church, there may be additional reporting requirements. AGM’s need to be done, by law, in the required time for the State/Territory that you live in.
Most churches are incorporated associations. The Rules of Incorporation require that the Church will conduct an Annual General Meeting of its members. However, the format of these meetings can vary significantly depending upon the requirements of the local constitution. Usually, an audited financial statement is required to be presented to this meeting and appointments should be made to key positions for the following year.
Many churches try to make this occasion a time of fun and celebration of what has happened over the past year, while combining the essential items of business in between.
The Annual Meeting Agenda should be set by the Board. It is best practice to circulate an Agenda and any relevant information before the meeting, so people have an opportunity to add or enquire about any concerns/questions they may have. This also gives them an opportunity to hand in attendance apologies. The Chairperson has the power to limit the Agenda.
All financial records will need to be properly audited before the meeting takes place and a copy made available to the members. Many Churches have an Annual Report Booklet prepared and presented to each member of the Church.
It is important that accurate Minutes should be taken even if the meeting is relatively casual or visionary in its presentation.
A sample Agenda follows.
Annual General Meeting Agenda
- Roll Call of Members –
Establish voting strength and Apologies
- Minutes of previous A.G.M.
- Matters arising from Minutes
- Appointment of Church Officers
These should be as required in the Local Rules of Incorporation
- Appointment of Church Auditor
If this is a requirement of the Constitution, the auditor should be thus appointed. Some constitutions permit the auditor to be appointed by the Board.
- General Business
Listed under relevant headings
Find out more about the rules and regulations for AGM’s at https://www.communitydirectors.com.au/icda/tools/?articleId=5953
Annual report content can vary, including showcasing Church departments, but common content can include:
- General information about the Church mission and main roles, why and when it was formed and the rules it is subject to
- A report from the CEO or Senior Pastor
- A summary of key activities and their results
- Future plans
- Reports and statements detailing the financial status of the Church
Most Churches have their accounts audited every year. The auditor will produce a financial statement showing income and expenditure and a balance sheet showing the assets and liabilities.
Legal requirements for Churches having AGM’s are clearly listed here. It states the how, what, where, when etc.
Instructions for doing an AGM online can be found here.