February 21, 2017

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CONGREGATIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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MEMBERSHIP CRITERIA

  1. Membership in the UMJC is open to congregations and chavurot that meet the following criteria:
    • Possession of a committed core of Jewish participants or members.
    • Agreement with the by-laws and membership standards of the UMJC, including the statement of faith, and the vision statement “Defining Messianic Judaism,” and commitment to incorporate these in their practice.
    • Meeting regularly, at least twice monthly for the entire year immediately preceding application.

2. Under these criteria, UMJC membership falls into four categories, listed below.  Applying groups shall be evaluated for the appropriate category according to the policy established by the delegates and recorded in the UMJC Policy Manual.

Full membership is the norm for a UMJC congregation. Full members may send two representatives, with voice and vote, to UMJC business meetings. Full membership requires:

  • A minimum of ten Messianic Jewish family units (with single individuals counting as a family unit), who are part of the official membership of the congregation, as defined in its by-laws. By definition, a Messianic Jew is a Jewish person (see definition of Jewish identity in the Policy Manual) who affirms Yeshua as the Messiah promised in the Tanakh and described in the Brit Chadashah and who has committed his life to Yeshua as Lord. (The ten Jewish family unit minimum applies to congregations joining the UMJC after passage of this amendment.)
  • Meeting at least weekly on Shabbat.
  • Bylaws or other governing document giving the group legal status that provides for financial accountability, and containing a process for removal of members and leaders for scriptural cause.
  • A congregational leader who has received recognition, licensure, or ordination according to the standards stated in the UMJC Policy Manual.
  • A minimum of three leaders, that is elders, trustees, or governing board members, who meet scriptural qualifications, including those outlined in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9, and other biblical criteria for leaders cited in their governing document. The congregational leader under 4) above may be one of the three. At least one of the three leaders must be a Messianic Jew.
Associate membership is available for groups that are seeking to qualify for full membership, but do not meet all the criteria. Associate members may send one representative, with voice and vote, to UMJC business meetings. In addition to the three criteria listed in section 1, associate membership requires:

  • Meeting at least weekly on Shabbat.
  • Bylaws or other governing document giving the group legal status that provides for financial accountability, and containing a process for removal of members and leaders for scriptural cause.
  •  A minimum of two leaders, that is elders, trustees, or governing board members, who meet scriptural qualifications, including those outlined in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9, and other biblical criteria for leaders cited in their governing document. Associate members may enlist such leaders from outside the congregation, as long as they are from within the UMJC communityAt least one of the leaders must be a Messianic Jew.

Associate membership is not intended as a permanent status, but is transitional, with full membership as the goal. Associate members will receive an annual review and regular consultation with the Regional Director, with assistance from the Executive Director, to help them meet the criteria for full membership.

Chavurah status must meet the three criteria required of all groups listed in section 1, but does not need further qualification. Chavurah members may send one representative, with voice but no vote, to UMJC business meetings. Unlike associate membership, Chavurah status can be long-term and should not create the expectation that the group will develop into a more formal congregation.
Provisional membership is available to congregations that submit applications too late to be included in the delegate mailing, that are unable to send a representative to the delegate meeting, that lack fully developed by-laws, or that lack a leader recognized by the UMJC Credentials Committee, if everything else is in good order. Provisional membership allows the congregation to be listed in the UMJC Directory and to send representatives to UMJC functions as appropriate, but does not qualify the congregation for voting or require the payment of dues. Provisional membership expires after one year, at the time of the next business meeting, subject to renewal by the delegate body.

INDIVIDUAL MEMBERSHIP

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You share in the vision of a restored remnant for Yeshua among the Jewish people.

You are connected to a worldwide Jewish movement for Messiah.

You will receive regular updates on issues such as:

  • The Bible in its Jewish context
  • Judaism and the Jewish People
  • The Land of Israel
  • The Biblical Holidays and their significance
  • Prophecies regarding Israel and the Church

You will strengthen the Messianic Jewish movement and the unique focus of the UMJC through your prayers, advocacy, and financial support.

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