Sunday is final day of voting

All Wilshire members who didn't vote last Sunday are invited to vote this Sunday, Nov. 13, during either the 8:30 or 11:00 morning worship service in continuation of the called church conference that began Oct. 30.The results of the vote will be announced by email on Monday, Nov. 14.

The question before the congregation is whether to approve a resolution proposed by the deacon body that states:

“RESOLVED, that the membership of Wilshire Baptist Church affirms its existing bylaws, which provide for a single class of membership.”

The resolution was crafted in response to the work of the Inclusion and Diversity Study Group, but the resolution presented does not call for a vote on the Study Group report.

The deacons have offered the following interpretation of what this vote means:

By voting YES on the resolution, the membership affirms the bylaws, which provide for one class of membership. Therefore, this resolution would permit all members to participate in congregational life on the same basis as any other church member regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. This affirms the ability of the church’s committees and lay and staff governance structures to consider all members for leadership, ordination, baby dedication and marriage based upon individual merit and the discernment of those duly elected to governance positions.

By voting NO on the resolution, the membership affirms the existing operational principle that does not allow some members to be considered for certain leadership roles, ordination, baby dedication and marriage based upon sexual orientation or gender identity.

Voting Procedures:

*All members who desire to vote (and haven't already picked up a ballot or voted) should stop by James Gallery before worship on Sunday, Nov. 13, to pick up their ballot.

*The church clerk has prepared envelopes labeled with the name of each active member. Inside each envelope is a ballot. Only one ballot per person.

*These envelopes will be distributed at tables in James Gallery staffed by deacons.

*Ballots also will be available for inactive/non-resident members who come to vote and whose names are verified by the church clerk as being on the membership roll.

*To receive a ballot, a member must appear in person at the distribution table in James Gallery prior to morning worship. No ballots will be given to a third party.

*Members must be present in the Sanctuary to vote. In compliance with the bylaws, a ballot will not be accepted by proxy or from outside the Sanctuary.

*Ballot distribution will begin at 7:45 a.m. this Sunday (Nov. 13) and close at 8:30 a.m. and then begin again at 9:30 a.m. and close at 11 a.m. Once the worship hour has begun, ballot distribution will cease. Latecomers will not be able to secure ballots after worship has begun.

*During each worship hour, those who are voting will be invited to come forward during the hymn of commitment and place their ballots in boxes at the front of both middle aisles and then return to their seats.

For more information on this issue and reason for vote:

Called church conference, October 30 - includes a letter from the Deacon Chair and some Q & A

Inclusion & Diversity Study Group page - And below find more information compiled by this Study Group:

Find the Study Group's report package here.

Find the Study Group's interactive bibliography here.

Find the Study Group's Information Seminar manuscript here.

Find the Study Group's Information Seminar Powerpoint slides here.

Find the Study Group's Information Session video below or here on youtube