OFFICE OF THE BOARD OF ELDERS
The office of the board of Elders is based on several scriptural passages principally on I Timothy 3:1-7, and I Peter 5:1-11. The office of Elders is also mentioned in Ephesus during Paul’s third missionary journey (Acts 20:17-19). At the Ethiopian Evangelical Church in Toronto, there are seven elders elected by the general assembly of all members of the church every three years. They are in charge of administrative decisions in the life of the Church – responsible for various activities within the congregation.
EECT’s Elders are servants, not Lords. They do not rule as authorities in hierarchy because all authority belongs to Christ alone, who is the head of the Church. The Elders’ role is therefore supervisory, advisory, and making important decisions where it is necessary. Elders are instrumental, through their individual and family life, leadership, teaching – bringing about consensus in the assembly according the Scripture. All members — including elders — submit to the Lord Jesus Christ, then to one another. In other words, there is no chain of command — but only a network of submission. Those who humble themselves to the level of servant-hood before the Lord and His assembly may be raised to the level of true accountability in the Church.