How We Govern Ourselves
Under the Book of Order, the constitution of the Presbyterian Church USA, there are three ministries of the church for which individuals are ordained: Teaching Elders (pastors), Ruling Elders and Deacons. All members of Stone Church are eligible for election and ordination as Ruling Elders and Deacons.
New Ruling Elders and Deacons are elected each year by our congregation and serve three-year terms. Our leadership is broad-based, employing the gifts of many people across the full scope of the church's ministry and mission, which means over the course of time that most members of Stone Church are asked by the Nominating Committee to serve a term in one of our elected offices.
The Session is the principal ruling body of a Presbyterian church. At Stone Church, the Session is composed of 21 Ruling Elders. Each is elected to a three-year term; seven Elders are elected each year to replace the seven Elders whose terms end. Elders serve as the leaders of Stone Church's 10 standing committees: Budget and Finance, Buildings and Grounds, Christian Education, Health Ministries, Membership and Communications, Nominating, Personnel and Administration, Stewardship, Stone Works and Worship.
The Session meets the third Tuesday of each month and all meetings are open. In addition, an Elder also meets monthly with the committee he or she leads. Except for the Personnel and Administration Committee, which is composed only of Ruling Elders and Elders not currently on the Session, and the Nominating Committee, which is composed of one person chosen by each of the other committees, committees are composed of members who volunteer to serve on committees they are interested in and members the committee recruits.
Deacons visiting the sick
Deacons at Stone Church perform ministries focused on sympathy, witness and service. Each of the 21 Deacons is elected a three-year term; seven Deacons are elected each year to replace the seven Deacons whose terms are ending.
The Deacons meet the fourth Tuesday of each month. In addition, Deacons visit the sick and elderly and often assist at memorial service receptions.