Congregations and their Constitutions

The Handbook of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod indicates that all changes to the constitution and bylaws of member congregations are to be reviewed and approved through the district board of directors as a qualification for continued membership in the Synod. In addition, the New England District charges the district’s Constitution Committee with reviewing all new constitutions and/or bylaws of a member congregation as well as all amendments to existing constitutions and bylaws. Any revisions to a constitution or bylaw are not effective until the board of directors has approved the changes.

The Constitution Committee looks to see if the constitution/bylaw helps a congregation accomplish its mission “decently and in good order.” The wording needs to be clear, concise, and unambiguous. The articles in the constitution/bylaw cannot conflict with each other or with the constitution and bylaws of the Synod and District.

Questions regarding constitution/bylaw changes can be directed to the Rev. Kevin Karner, chairman of the NED Constitution Committee. He can be reached at

Respectfully submitted,
The Rev. Kevin Karner
Chairman, NED Constitution Committee