Thursday, July 9, 2015

A Note on Women's Ordination

As your pastor I am addressing the General Conference’s discussion and vote on women’s ordination.

On Wednesday, July 8, the general conference session voted on a motion that pertains to the credentialing of women in ministry in the Seventh-day Adventist church. The motion, “After your prayerful study on ordination from the Bible, the writings of Ellen G. White, and the reports of the study commissions, and; after your careful consideration of what is best for the church and the fulfillment of its mission, is it acceptable for division executive committees, as they may deem it appropriate in their territories, to make provision for the ordination of women to the gospel ministry? Yes or No.”

The conclusion came in at 1,381 no votes; 977, yes votes; 5 abstained.

This is not the conclusion I prayed and hoped for.

What this means is we continue as we are. Men and women will continue to be ordained as elders, ordained as deacons and deaconesses too. The current world church policy also provides room for men and women as pastors to lead out in baby dedications, celebrate baptisms, encourage at funerals, officiate communion, and perform marriages. “This vote does not determine whether or not women can serve as ministers.” I am still your pastor. Women around the North American division and world will continue in their pastoral roles. They will continue to preach, to pray, to baptize and to minister just as God called them to do.

For a more detailed description of the day’s events:

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