Bylaws

1. Name

The name of this society is the Vietnamese Biblical Theology Society (VBTS).

2. Mission Statement

Found in 2018, the Vietnamese Biblical Theology Society (VBTS) is an organization that seeks to promote and advance Vietnamese biblical and theological scholarship in the English and Vietnamese languages.  VBTS achieves this mission through the following goals:

2.1. Provides a digital platform for scholarly dialogues to advance the critical studies of the Bible.

2.2. Fosters the understanding of Biblical Theology in the context of the historical and cultural constraints in which the sacred texts were written.

2.3. Encourages the critical studies of the arts and sciences of interpretive techniques and principles at the local church level.

2.4. Develops the critical studies of Biblical Theology in light of the Vietnamese rich and diverse religious and cultural heritage, seeking to lay foundational school of thoughts for Vietnamese Biblical Theology relevant to the modern Vietnamese socio-cultural context.

2.5. Offers scholarly resources for the Vietnamese-speaking churches and the English-speaking Vietnamese churches with a focus on the younger generation.

2.6. Organizes conferences for the purpose of scholarly dialogues and exchanges on all aspects of biblical theology as they relate to the rich and diverse Vietnamese religious and cultural contexts.

2.7. Encourages its members to engage the ethical and theological issues that face their local Vietnamese churches and communities.

3. Core Values

3.1. VBTS’s core values include open-mindedness, fairness, inclusiveness, cooperative ecumenical fellowship, scholarly rigor and integrity, respect of all social diversities, respect of all cultures, and respect of the rich and diverse Vietnamese religious and cultural heritage.

3.2. VBTS believes that its members, as with any responsible citizen living in their own society, should express current social and cultural issues and act according to their own conscience and system of belief in a responsible and ethical way.

4. Membership

4.1 Eligibility. All persons interested in the scholarly study of the Bible can apply to be a member of VBTS.

4.2. Admission. Application for membership shall be submitted to VBTS Executive Committee.  Executive Committee shall approve membership application; this authority may be delegated to the Executive Director.

4.3. Members shall receive VietBib Journal at no cost if published; members shall be invited to participate in VBTS conferences.

4.4. Revoking of Membership: Officers shall recommend to Executive Committee for revoking membership of a member for grave cause.

5. Officers

5.1. Officers are of members of Editorial Board and members of Executive Committee.

5.2. Officers shall have M.Div., M.A., or Th.M. degree in Biblical Studies, Theology, or related disciplines, or advanced doctorate degree in any disciplines.  All degrees shall come from Regional or National accreditations agencies as recognized by the U.S Department of Education.  A minimum of 7 years of working experience directly related to the functions and duties of the office to be held within the organization of the Society might be substituted for the required degree.

5.3. Candidates for Officers shall be as recommended by Executive Committee and shall be elected to hold office as specified in these Bylaws.

5.4. Only Officer membership has voting privileges. Officer shall have voting privileges to elect members of Council (no proxy or in absentia votes are allowed).

6. Editorial Board.

6.1 Editorial Board consists of General Editor and Associate Editors. Each member shall be elected to serve a five year term according to guidelines set forth in these By-Laws. Editorial Board is the theological think tank of the Society and shall be responsible for the editing of all contents and information to be disseminated to the public, including but not limited to general announcements, journals, and social media posts, under its name and approved logo.

6.2. General Editor shall serve as Chair of Editorial Board. General Editor shall receive and edit manuscripts for publication.  General Editor shall consult with Associate Editors to accept manuscripts.

6.3. General Editor shall have Ph.D., Th.D., S.S.D. or S.T.D. degree in Theology, Biblical Studies, Biblical Theology, or related disciplines.  All required degrees shall come from recognized institutions accredited by Regional accreditation agencies together with the accreditation by the National Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada as recognized by U.S Department of Education.

6.4. Associate Editor shall have Ph.D., Th.D., S.S.D. or S.T.D. degree in Theology, Biblical Studies, Biblical Theology, or other disciplines.  All advanced degrees shall come from recognized institutions accredited by Regional accreditation agencies as recognized by U.S Department of Education.

6.5. Associate Editor shall assist the General Editor with the editing of manuscripts assigned by the General Editor.  Associate Editor shall make recommendation to the Editorial Board for publication of the edited manuscript.

7. Executive Committee.

7.1. Executive Committee consists of President, Vice President, Executive Director, Executive Secretary, and Treasurer.  Executive Committee shall ensure that core values and principles of the Society are upheld in all of its governing decisions, in all its operations and gathering activities, in its meetings and conferences. Executive Committee acts on behalf of VBTS to ascertain the continuity of the Society’s business.

7.2. General Editor shall be elected by Executive Committee to serve a five year term.

7.3. President shall be elected by the members of Executive Committee to serve a four year term.  President shall chair all meetings and conferences of the Society. President shall appoint special task force or committees as needed.

7.4. Vice President: Vice President shall be elected by the Executive Committee to serve a four year term. Vice President shall assist the President to fulfill his/her duties and to act as a substitute for the President as needed.

7.5. Executive Director shall be elected by the Executive Committee to serve a four year term. Executive Director shall consult with the Executive Committee to 1) execute all programs, initiatives, and general policies of the Society, 2) propose budgets for all operations, 3) supervise financial management and accounting procedures, 4) report to the Executive Committee, annually or as requested by the Executive Committee, the state of the Society to include membership enrollment, endowments, budget, or any other matters as requested by the Executive Committee, 5) maintain records of the proceedings, meeting minutes, 6) schedule and announce meetings.  Executive Director acts as the spokesperson of the Society. Executive Director will ascertain that core values and principles of the Society are upheld in all of its governing decisions, in all its operations and gathering activities, in its meetings and conferences, and in all forms of its publications, both in physical and digital spaces.

7.6. Executive Secretary main function is to assist the Executive Director to fulfill his/her duties.  Secretary shall prepare all meeting minutes and correspondences for the Executive Committee.  Executive Secretary shall attend Executive Committee meetings and shall maintain permanent record of meetings.

8. Board of Council

8.1. The Board of Council shall include: President, Vice President, Executive Director, members of Board of Editors, Executive Secretary, and Treasurer.  Candidates to serve as member of Council shall be recommended by the Executive Committee and shall be elected by Board of Council to serve a four year term with the exception of Editors.  Council provides general oversight to ascertain that the Society business is conducted according to the core values of the Society.  Council reviews reports from standing committees and approves annual budget. Council approves Candidates to serve as members of Council or Executive Committee.  Council approves and adopts By-Laws. A two-thirds vote of the members of Council present and voting shall be required for all decisions. Council shall meet once a year.

8.2. Representative shall direct all logistic activities for annual conference that takes place in his/her region.  Regional Representative shall recommend candidates for membership.

8.3. Treasurer serves as the Accountant of the Society. Treasurer shall collect annual dues and manage and keep all financing records in accordance with recognized standard accounting practices and procedure.  Treasurer shall submit timely annual report to the Council or within 10 working days when a financial report is requested by the Council. Bookkeeping records and financial reports shall be made available for the review whenever requested by the Council.

9. Annual Meetings & Theological Conferences

VBTS shall meet annually for business management and theological conference. Executive Director will consult with Executive Committee and determines time and place of meeting and announces to all members at least six months in advance.

10. By-Laws

The Society shall be governed under the By-Laws to ensure its effectiveness in all business and operations. Change in the By-Laws may be made at Annual Meeting by a two-thirds vote of the members of Executive Committee present and voting.

 

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