Tentative Constitution for Hunan Bible Institute

Tentative Constitution for Hunan Bible Institute (Bible Institute of L. A. in China) I Historical Sketch

A number of years ago (?) Doctor Frank A. Keller, for many years a member of the China Inland Mission, saw a trim and sprightly launch steam up the Siang River and anchor at Changsha, the capital of Hunan, China. Without delay, a company of foreigners and Chines came ashore and began distributing in the shops and houses attractive little boxes containing samples of cigarettes. Later in the day, when the farmers and country merchants were returning home, they stood on temporary platforms by the way and gave to each man as he passed, as sample of their wares. Doctor Keller gives his impression of what he saw that day in the following statement: “As we saw their strenuous [ sic ] work and heard of their far reaching plans and thot [ sic ] of the thousands and thousand s of towns and villages whose millions of people have never heard of Christ or even seen a copy of God’s Word who would soon be smoking cigarettes, our hearts were filled with a burning shame and at the same time throbbed with a great ambition, to be equally comprehensive in plan, wise in method, and prompt in action for the King.” Just at that time there came to Doctor Keller’s hand a gift from the Bible House of Los Angeles to be used for the distribution of the scriptures in Hunan. He proposed to an evangelist and a Christian teacher to furnish a boat, food, and books if they would undertake a tour of evangelism in the province. The proposition was received with sympathetic enthusiasm, and after a month of free will service, returned with a thrilling and inspiring report of their experiment. This experiment with the story of the launch and work of the cigarette part was reported to the friends at Los Angeles. Doctor Keller was at once engaged by the Bible House of Los Angeles to inaugurate and to superintend the work of evangelization among the millions of Hunanese. The doctor undertook the task and after six years of service, under the auspices of the Bible House, continued it as a department of the Bible Institute of Los Angeles. During these years of Development the work followed two main lines: A. The Bible Instituted at Changsha B. Extensive Evangelism through Evangelistic Bands II Name The name of the school shall be the Hunan Bible Institute (Bible Institute of Los Angeles in China) The name in Chinese shall be written. III Character and Aim a. The Institute shall be interdenominational in character, evangelical in doctrine, thorough in intellectual processes, pedagogical in methods and reverent in spirit. b. The aim of the Institute shall be the same as that of the Bible Institute of Los Angeles, adapted to conditions in China, which air is to equip men and women for Christian service. [ Page 2 ]

Tentative Constitution for Hunan Bible Institute IV Grounds, Buildings, and Equipment

The Hunan Bible Institute, at the present time has a campus of some seven acres (?) just east of the Canton-Hankow railway on the motor road between the city of Changsha and Canton, at Changsha, Human. The Buildings erected on the campus are as follows: 1. Milton Stewart Hall 2. Dormitories No. 1 & 2 -- Lyman Stewart Dormitories 3. Dormitory No. 3 -- May Stewart Martin Dormitory 4. Dormitory No. 4 -- Mary W. Stewart Dormitory 5. Dining Room -- Mary W. Stewart Dining Hall 6. Residence (1-6) -- (Faculty and administration)

V Organization

a. Board of Founders b. Board of Managers c. Executive Committee d. Faculty

a. Board of Founders A Board of Founders in the U.S.A. shall be organized to co-operate with a Board of Managers in China, who shall be responsible for the full administration of the Institute’s activities in China. The Board of Founders shall consist of (9) members, the majority of which shall be members of the Board of the Bible Institute. The headquarters of the Board shall be at Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. The Lands, buildings and other equipment, and all funds shall be held in trust by the Board of Founders in the United States of America. And in case a Chinese Church or organization shall contribute to the equipment or endowment of the Institute, its equitable interest in the Institute shall be guarded by the Board under arrangements mutually satisfactory. Appointment and control of foreign missionaries to the Institute in China shall be provided for by a separate manual prepared by the Board of Founders and incorporated with this constitution. To create and confirm a Board of Managers in China who shall in accordance with the requirements of the Nationalist Government controlling religious Institutions be responsible to the Board of Founders for the complete administration of the Institute’s activities in China. The Board of Founders shall elect its own officers and publish an annual report. The Board of Founders shall secure a charter that will enable it to confer theological degrees similar to standing to that of the Bible Institute of Los Angeles. [ Page 3 ]

Tentative Constitution for Hunan Bible Institute


b. Board of Managers The Board of Managers shall consist of not less than eleven members and shall be representative of evangelical missions and churches in China. And shall be on a equal basis of representation of Chinese and missionaries, and there shall be a Chinese Chairman. Only representatives officially confirmed by the Board of Founders shall be recognized as members. There shall be one representative at large who shall be elected by the Alumni from their number. The Board shall annually elect the following officers: Chairman, Vice-Chairman, Chinese Secretary, English Secretary, and Treasurer. The last two may be members of the faculty without vote. The powers and duties of the Board of Managers shall be as follows: (a) To have full control of the properties of the Institute in behalf of the Founders; to prepare budgets; receive and administer funds. (b) To determine the general policy and curriculum of the Institute. (c) To nominate and elect members of the Faculty. These shall be elected by a three fourths majority of the total membership of the Board. The nomination, when the Board is not in session shall be made by the Executive Committee to the Board. (d) To provide for a Finance and Property Committee and an Examining Committee, and such other committees as the needs of the school may require. (e) To yearly publish a report of the schools activities and also an annual financial statement. (f) To elect a President and a Vice-President of the Institute. (g) To meet annually in regular session. Upon written request of five members of the Board or the request of the Executive Committee the Chairman shall call a special meeting of the Board of Managers. (h) An Executive Committee of five shall be elected by the Board annually to attend to urgent matters between the regular meetings of the Board. (i) Two thirds of the members of the Board shall constitute a quorum. c. Executive Committee The Executive Committee of five shall be elected by the Board of Managers and may consist of members of the faculty as well as the Board of Managers. This Committee shall meet monthly or at other stated times for the attention of matters of urgency in the Institute. d. Faculty (a) Each member of the Faculty, shall submit to the Board of Managers in writing a statement agreeing to teach in harmony with the Constitution; reaffirming his loyalty to the Doctrinal Standards of the Institute as outlined in this constitution.

[ Page 4 ] Tentative Constitution for Hunan Bible Institute

(4) (b) The Faculty and administrative officers shall have the general management of the school, and shall present an annual report to the Board of Managers.

(c) The governing faculty shall be composed of professors, assistant professors and administration officers, who have had at least one year’s work in the Institute. VI Doctrinal Basis Shall be the same as the Bible Institute of Los Angeles (Incorporate Articles here) VII Amendments In order to amend this Constitution, a notice setting forth clearly the purpose of the amendment shall be sent thru the English secretary of the Board of Managers to the Board of Founders, not less than six months before the meeting of the Board. An amendment to be valid must be passed by a least three fourths vote of the entire membership of the Board of Managers and the Board of Founders. That this constitution when officially adopted shall be printed Chinese and English. The English text shall be official text of the Constitution.

[ written circa 1920s ]

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