Church leaders serve in different aspects of church government such as the deacon board and the elder board as well as with other ministries and commissions. Each board or ministry elects a chairman. The church board draws members from the other boards and/or commissions to administer church business. The church board elects an overall church chairman from among the members of the church board.
Those in all church leadership positions need to meet certain qualifications. Church leaders need to be persons of good character with a good reputation both within the church and within the community. A married church leader needs to be a good spouse and parent. A church leader shows spiritual maturity and a desire to shepherd others to the love of Christ. Church leaders abstain from any practice or habit that hinders their testimony, are financially responsible, honest and diligent in all they do. A church chairman must be even more responsible as an example to other leaders and church members.
A church chairman needs to be an adult (the precise age differs with different churches) and a member who not only attends church faithfully, but also serves in the church. A church chairman needs to have already shown leadership abilities in other leadership positions and can volunteer the time needed to do the chairman duties. In many churches today, a female may serve as church chairman. In some churches, the chairman must meet the qualifications for eldership. All chairman qualifications stem from such Biblical passages as I Timothy 3:3-13, Galatians 5:22-23 and/or Titus 1:6-9.
Members of the church board vote one of their members in as church chairman. This office usually lasts one year or until the church elects a new church board.
Churches, like other businesses, are legal entities. Officers of the church include a treasurer, the secretary and the church chairman. The chairman serves as president of the church corporation and, along with the secretary, signs documents on behalf of the church corporation.
Along with the senior pastor, the church chairman serves as an ex-officio member of all church committees. Attendance for the chairman is optional and attendance may or may not count toward a quorum.
The chairman schedules church board meetings in coordination with the senior pastor, sets the agenda, leads the meetings and makes sure church board decisions are carried out.
The church chairman also presides over the annual, quarterly and any other meetings that include all members. The church chairman also provides a written report about the church to the members at the annual meeting.
Churches can be as different as they are similar. Churches differ in governance and/or in titles, such as the church council or executive council instead of the church board. Church chairman duties may also differ somewhat from one church to another and one denomination to another. Nevertheless, Christian churches derive the basic qualifications and duties of a church chairman from Scripture.
- Cross of Christ Lutheran Church: Bylaws
- First EFC of Colorado Springs Doctrinal Statement of Faith and Church Bylaws: Section F-The Church Chairman
- "Bylaws of the Hope Evangelical Free Church of Kearney, Nebraska": Article VI: last updated 2009
- First EFC: Bylaws of First Evangelical Free Church Minneapolis, Minnesota