Bylaws of Brothers and Sisters of the Way 

Revisions 1995

ARTICLE I – NAME

The name of this Organization shall be THE BROTHERS AND SISTERS OF THE WAY.

ARTICLE II – PURPOSE

The Brothers and Sisters of the Way is organized exclusively among ordained clergy for religious purposes, having for its object the cultivation of a fellowship built on the principle of love, and the deepening of the religious life of its members, and the sustaining of those serving in parish ministry

ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP

1. All candidates for membership in the Order must be ordained clergy.  Every candidate must attend at least one Retreat, and spend a year’s novitiate in the Order.  During a second Retreat, by mutual consent, a Novice may be consecrated a Member.  Consecration shall be contingent upon acceptance of the Rules and Obligations, as set forth in the Rule Book.

2. Ordained clergy serving in judicatory positions will not be considered for membership in the Order.  A Member who is called to a judicatory position shall not attend Retreats for the duration of that service.

3. A Member is considered an ABLE Brother or Sister by regularly paying dues and attending Retreats.  An ORDINARY Brother or Sister is one who pays dues, but has not attended a Retreat within five years.  Able Brothers and Sisters have the right to vote.

4. A Member who fails to pay dues or attend Retreats for five consecutive years and makes no response when contacted by the Prior will be considered to have withdrawn, and will be dismissed from the Order.  Or a Member may, upon request to the Prior, withdraw from the Order.

5. A former Member may, upon written request o\to the Prior, be reinstated as a Member upon payment of dues for the current year.

The insignia of the Order shall be a silver Chalice, not more than two inches nor less than one inch in height.  It may be worn on the left side of the pulpit gown.  Each Member will receive the insignia of the Order during his or her second Retreat following Consecration as a Member of the Brothers and Sisters of the Way. 

ARTICLE IV – OFFICERS

The Officers of the Order shall consist of a Prior, Sub-Prior, Scribe, Treasurer, Abbot, Librarian, and such other Officers as may be deemed desirable from time to time.  The Officers, who also serve as an Executive Committee, shall be elected for a term of five years.  The Executive Committee shall fill vacancies until the next Annual Meeting.  The Abbot is not elected, but automatically succeeds to this office for five years after completion of a full term as Prior. 

ARTICLE V – THE WORK OF OFFICERS

1. The work of the Prior is to have general oversight and control of the Order.  The Prior may make no changes in the Rules and Obligations of the Order.  He or she must be Able and regular in conducting Retreats.  During Retreats the Prior must serve the Members in a menial capacity.  The Prior shall watch over the welfare of the Members, see that the Rules and Obligations are consistently carried out, and make investigation of and issue special dispensation to Members who are unable to carry out their duties.

2. The work of a Sub-Prior is to assist the Prior in exercising the duties of the Office, and to assume those duties in the Prior’s absence.

3. The work of all other Officers shall be to fulfill the duties common to their Offices.

4. The work of the Abbot shall be to serve on the Executive Committee for the five years immediately following completion of his or her term as Prior.  During this period, the title “Active Abbot” shall be conferred.

5. All who have served as Prior shall carry the honorary title of Abbot for life.

ARTICLE VI – RETREATS AND MEETINGS

1. There shall be at least one Retreat annually, at a time and place designated by the Prior.  Members may propose clergy acquaintances for attendance at Retreats to the Prior, who shall invite them at his or her discretion, subject to the availability of space.  Preference in registration for Retreats shall be given, first, to Members of the Order and second, to Novices before invitations are issued to new Retreatants.

2. A business session or Annual Meeting shall be conducted during the Retreat, designated by the Prior. 

3. The initial agenda for business sessions or Annual Meetings shall be proposed by the Executive Committee; proceedings on these items and any additional business presented from the floor shall be fully reported by mail to all Members; and where necessary the Executive Committee shall conduct mail ballots to allow all Able Members to Participate in decision-making.

 ARTICLE VII – DUES

Any changes in the Annual Dues of the Order shall be voted by the Annual Meetings.

ARTICLE VIII – LIMITATIONS

Monies received by the Order shall be used solely for the conduct of Retreats and maintenance of the Order.  Unless otherwise provided for in this Rule Book, the Order shall not engage in any activities or exercise any powers that are not in furtherance of the purposes of the Order.

 ARTICLE 1X – DISSOLUTION

Upon the dissolution of the Order, the Officers shall, after paying or making provision for the payment of all the liabilities of the Order, dispose of all the assets of the Order, to another organization or organizations operated exclusively for religious purposes.  The Officers of the Order shall determine the qualifications of such organization or organizations.

ARTICLE X – AMENDMENTS

This Constitution or the Rules of the Order may be amended by 2/3 vote of the Able Members of the Order, the vote being taken by mail ballot.  Amendments may be proposed by an Annual Meeting or by the Executive Committee.

See also the BSOW Rule