As a church board member, you should be familiar with and be able to identify a number of records, including the following:
Articles of Incorporation (or Charter)
If your church is incorporated, the document that you submitted to a court or to the secretary of state to become incorporated is generally referred to as the articles of incorporation. It is typically a short document that contains the church's name, address, period of duration, initial board of directors, and statement of purposes. When this document is recognized by the state, and the church's corporate status begins, the articles of incorporation is called the charter. There are a few things that church board members should know about their church charter.
First, it is the most authoritative legal document that the church has. In the event of a conflict between the charter and any other legal document, the charter generally will control.