The Church Council is the entire congregation of the church. In the Church of the Brethren, the Council Meeting is understood to be the final authority and governing body within the local congregation; it is the church in business session. The Council Meeting is intended to be a place of open dialogue where members hear reports, discuss new ideas, envision and approve goals, evaluate past accomplishments, make decisions for future direction, and record the voice of the congregation on current issues where Christian witness is urgent. The business meeting shall also affirm officers, adopt budgets, rule on policy and organizational matters, and authorize church officials to act on behalf of the congregation. All active members shall be eligible to vote in the congregational business meeting. The Council Meeting should strive for prayerful consensus and unity in its decision-making. Church Council meets at least twice yearly.