Like it or not, pastors really need to know some about Robert’s Rules of Order, especially if you want to make a positive contribution at a national convention, synod, or assembly. I often consult the “In Brief” version of Robert’s Rules.
For online help, this is a nice introductory site with a complete text of the 1915 Order. Here are a few other survival tips. And these six pages will be more than enough for most people. Print out the tables, study them for an hour, and learn how to be much more effective in deliberations and assemblies which use parliamentary procedure.
Many denominations, institutions, and boards have veered off course simply because the good guys never bothered to figure out how things get done. We can lament that church business is so constrained by procedural questions, but the rules enable profitable discussion and equitable decision making in the bodies that understand them and apply them fairly.
Robert’s Rules is no substitute for the rule of love or the rule of Christ, but for many of us, our interest in the latter would be well served by a knowledge of the former.