All organizations need a system of governance to preserve order, define and cast a vision, and provide accountability between the staff and stakeholders. In the LCMS we practice congregational polity, which means that each congregation is self-governed.
Our first responsibility is always to Christ. It is His church. At the same time, we believe that Christ empowers a local church to exist through the gathering of the priesthood of believers, what we recognize as the local congregation, the members of which form our Fellowship Assembly.
At St. James, the Fellowship Assembly’s interests are represented and overseen by the Fellowship Council. The Fellowship Assembly elects seven of its members to the Fellowship Council every two years. The Fellowship Council is also comprised of two Elders who are appointed by the Council of Elders every two years, and the Senior Pastor, who joins as a non-voting member to provide pastoral guidance. The Fellowship Council’s Roles and Responsibilities are set forth in St. James’ Constitution and By-Laws.