Doctrines and Discipline of the Free Methodist Church of North America - 1939 Edition



     ¶ 206. 1. The General Conference shall elect by ballot two or more traveling elders as bishops to be known as the Board of Bishops who shall remain in office during the quadrennium and until others shall be elected in their places.

     2. It shall be the duty of the Board of Bishops:

          a. To meet at least once a year.

          b. To exchange experiences, to counsel and formulate plans for the progress of the work of the church.

          c. To group the conferences and so arrange conference schedules that no substitute, other than a bishop, be assigned to any one conference for two successive years.

     ¶ 207. It shall be the duty of the bishops:

     1. To visit each conference in their respective groups during the year, and as far as possible, cail the pastors and conference leaders together for the purpose of counseling and advising them in the promotion of the spiritual and temporal interests of the church in accordance with the plan of the Board of Bishops.

     2. To oversee the spiritual and temporal interests of our church, and to labor to promote its purity, peace and prosperity.

     3. To establish new societies.

     4. To receive and suspend preachers, according to the provisions of the Discipline.

     5. To change preachers from one district to another where the districts are presided over by different elders, with the consent of the preacher to be removed and of the district elders, and n majority of the official hoard of the circuit from which he is to be removed.

     6. To transfer a preacher from one conference to another, with the consent of the preacher and of the conference to which he is transferred; provided, that no preacher shall be transferred to another conference without a certificate of his good standing and general acceptability, given by his annual or quarterly conference.

     7. To form new conferences in the intervals of general conferences, as the wants of the work may demand, subject to the approval of the General Conference; provided, that no new conference shall be formed without the consent of the conference whose territory is affected, and also, without the consent of at least two-thirds of the members of the executive commission; provided, also, that no new conference shall be organized with less than five preachers in full membership and one hundred full members within its bounds.

     8. To preside at the sessions of the General Conference, the Board of Administration, the annual conferences, and at the trial of appeals taken from quarterly or annual conferences, and to decide all questions of law therein, subject to an appeal to the General Conference.

     9. To receive from anyone whom they may appoint to hold an annual conference a comprehensive written report of all the proceedings of administration which may have arisen in said annual conference.

     10. The bishops shall be amenable to the General Conference for the discharge of their official duties, and for their Christian conduct to the annual conferences to which they respectively belong.

     11. A bishop shall have power to cite a preacher for trial for insubordination or maladministration. according to Paragraph 261.