Haruo wrote:I agree. I can't quite imagine why an autonomous congregation would need Valley Forge approval (or even regional approval) to withdraw from ABC. On the other hand, mortgages being what they are, I can see how a region or national could have an interest in the real estate. Maybe that's what Ed means. Also, it's possible that a church might have such a requirement written into its own by-laws.
ABC churches put often put in their bylaws property revisionary clauses which require any property to go back to the ABC if the church leaves. The reason this happened is that there have been instances of church stealing (for want of a better term) where the church goofs and hires a pastor without ABC credentials whose intention is to lead the church out of the denomination. Or, as almost happened to a church in Kansas leading to a lawsuit many years ago, a group join the church from another denomination and then show up at the business meeting and act as a voting block to basically steal the church from its original membership and denomination.
My previous Baptist experience is that church business meetings are so poorly attended at most churches that an organized faction could easily show up and vote a church out of the denomination if there was not a clause in the Bylaws to prevent such an action.