The records of the developments and decisions of your church, whether in traditional paper form or electronic, are important sources of information about its life. These records can include minutes of meetings, membership rolls, newsletters, annual reports, programs, etc, as well as photographs and recordings.
These records are important now and in the future – for example, they will be needed by church officers who are responsible for planning and decision making in your church and denomination. Researchers from historical societies, students and the community will also find them useful in analysing the story of your church and district.
These records may also be needed by the church for legal reasons and could help to protect the church and its members in cases of litigation. So it is vital that these records be properly made in the first place, then carefully stored and well managed. Here are some guidelines to help in the process.
Creating good records
It is important to make sure that all departments create adequate records of their work either on paper or electronically, or both. Make sure such records are clearly identified as to who originated them, their purpose and especially their date. Keep in mind the possible future uses of the records (planning and review, denominational reporting, historical research and legal responsibilities), and ensure that official records of decisions, reports of developments and other relevant details are formally made.
Records should be on good quality paper, with the pages bound together firmly and/or pasted in strong books. It is not acceptable to use arch-binders, metal paper-clips and sticky tape which damage the documents. See the guide sheets link below for detailed information.
The Archives, located at Queensland Baptists’ Centre, are happy to assist with any enquiries in relation to archiving church records.
For further information contact Dr Pam Condie, OAM:
- P: 07 3354 5600
- E: firstname.lastname@example.org
Archival Resources and Guides
- Download Guide: Archiving Emails – a 12 point guide
- Managing Church Records – A Guide
- Download Guide: Digitising your Church Records
- Download Guide: Digital Archiving
- Form: Baptist Church Archives Register (CAR) form