Voting in favor of the motion: 977
Voting in opposition to the motion: 1381
Abstain: 5

The motion is defeated.

This morning Pr. Ted Wilson, president of the General conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church outlined the process that would be followed and plead for a sweet spirit to prevail. After summaries of the TOSC finding groups 1, 2 and 3 were given, debate began. Persons spoke in favor and in opposition to the motion. Eventually the group stopped for lunch.

Debate resumed. The debate was dominated by Africa and IAD and NAD. Jay Gallimore spoke plainly against. Numerous NAD delegates speaking in favor, offering weak, pragmatic, culture-based arguments.

Eventually, Pr. Jan Paulson (former GC president) addressed the group from the floor pleading in favor of the motion, claiming still to have the spirit of leadership. Claiming he “loved Africa,” he said that if the Africans trusted their leaders, they should vote yes. Paulson’s condescending remarks perturbed the African contingent. Several complained to the chair. Paulson’s sad speech led to great unrest. The assembled delegates were led to pause for prayer. Natasha Nebblett, a NAD delegate and lay leader of GYC, spoke strongly in opposition to the motion, mentioning 1000s of NAD Adventists who disagreed with women’s ordination and actions of NAD leadership.

Eventually, the current GC president, pastor Ted Wilson spoke briefly from the floor offering clear, thoughtful, godly remarks. Many emotionally and culturally-based arguments had been presented by NAD and TED delegates, but those from other divisions called for unity and working together. They did not agree with letting each division determine women’s ordination independently for itself.

The vote was taken in due course with the above final result. Pr. Wilson addressed the group at the conclusion of the meeting. He shared the well known statement from Ellen White’s writings in Testimonies, vol. 9, p. 261, “When assembled in session, the General Conference shall have authority.” “Now is the time to unify under the bloodstained banner of Jesus Christ and His power, not our own power.”

FYI the motion:


WHEREAS, The unity for which Jesus prayed is vitally important to the witness of Seventh-day Adventist Church, and;
WHEREAS, The Seventh-day Adventist Church seeks to engage every member in its worldwide mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ among people from every nation, culture and ethnicity, and;
WHEREAS, Various groups appointed by the General Conference and its divisions have carefully studied the Bible and Ellen G White writings with respect to the ordination of women and have not arrived at consensus as to whether ministerial ordination for women is unilaterally affirmed or denied, and;
WHEREAS, The Seventh-day Adventist Church affirms that “God has ordained that the representatives of His Church from all parts of the earth, when assembled in a General Conference Session, shall have authority”,
THEREFORE, The General Conference Executive Committee requests delegates in their sacred responsibility to God at the 2015 General Conference Session to respond to the following question:

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

40 thoughts on “GC result: Yes: 977 No: 1381

  1. Sadly this issue will continue to be brought up at GC after GC. One side thinks they can eventually change the Holy Spirit’s mind.

  2. So how will you respond to those who wanted a yes vote, but didn’t get it? No comment maybe? Sly smile? A little smug about your win?

    For me, I think the most difficult thing to address will be dealing with those who declared openly, suggested or implied they would or might LEAVE the church if the vote was YES.

    Well it wasn’t YES, it was NO, so they are safe now? Not really, hearts have been revealed on both sides as to their intentions, one way or another. Some damage has been done, I will be cautious of either side who suggested or implied they would leave the church if they didn’t get the vote they wanted.

    Troubling, not the vote, the attitude demonstrated before the vote.

    • Mentioning ATTITUDES, sad to say, the pro-WO faction was publicly publishing very hurtful remarks about our leadership on social media. I myself saw MANY of these. Their negative articles have been read and seen by the world and picked up by the secular press such as the Washington Post. I did not see this attitude exhibited by those on the other side. The GC tried every way to accommodate fairly BOTH sides and the time allotted in public forum was done fairly and without bias. Allowing an ex-world leader to speak for the other side was as fair as you can get. It has been extremely sad to see the attitude of the NAD division and how they have openly defied the church the past couple of years on this issue. Our family has been very saddened to see church resources used to promote an issue that was in absolute rebellion, with many biased articles on social feed and through the AR. Nothing was said about the other side and it gave a skewed position to the world church that ALL the NAD members supported this idea.

      • That’s what has bothered me the most during the past couple of years: that official publications and statements of the leadership in the NAD have been presented as a reflection of the entire NAD. If the SDA Church had been comprised of the NAD alone, our division would likely have split over this issue years ago. I’m certainly sorry about Dan Jackson’s re-election. Now the pro-ordination faction in our division will have a “mandate” to keep on keeping on.

    • Some General Conference delegate should put a motion to the floor that this matter will never be raised again. AND we should rescind all female elder ordinations thus far carried out to be consistent. We should also request all presidents who supported this motion to step down from office. We have had enough of misguided political and worldly wise leaders wasting our time and God’s money working us only such Godless drivel. Anyone who does not have the spiritual sense to see plain scripture should NOT be a leader: Period. We do not want this matter brought up again. We need the courage to state plainly that those who do not believe in scripture as it reads and who are not happy with Adventism as it is should LEAVE! They really are welcome to start their own churches and religions but they should not purpote to believe in something they do not believe in and continue to seek to change this church. After this GC the North American Division leadership should resign and so should should all conference leaders who supported this motion. It is the correct thing to do.

      • we cant do that, ellen white is clear that GC isn’t the top-top organ that can order everything, that will be like papacy. we ought to pray for the holy spirit to reduce us to acceptance of spiritual truth unfolded today.

        • We can and we should. Whatever error we voted in at an annual council should be rescinded at the next annual council and whatever we voted in at a session should have a session to rescind it or each Union must conduct a process to formulate the popular position into a policy position to be submitted to the GC before the next session. We may have to call an emergency session but a position must be taken at the session to ask all leaders who do not believe in implementing GC positions to resign and new leaders be appointed. We need a process to ensure that no one who does not believe in the Bible as it reads is appointed to or holds office. I appreciate your thought that it is hard work to clean this mess but we can begin with making sure that all our churches UNDERSTAND the position of the world church on WO and Homosexuality. It must be a POSITION taken THAT ANY LEADER WHO DOES NOT BELIEVE IN THE BIBLE or RESPECT GC DECISIONS CANNOT BE A LEGITIMATE LEADER in the Adventist Church. We may have apostate and rebellious leaders but the world church must TAKE CLEAR POSITIONS AND NOT SERVE ICE CREAM LACED WITH ARSENIC. NO MORE KICKING CANS DOWN THE ROAD. NO MORE POLITICKING AND DUPLICITOUS DOUBLE SPEAK. IT MUST BE OUR POSITION TO RESOLVE ISSUES.

  3. It has been said that imitation is the highest form of flattery; however, I’m not sure that this is the case here: I must admit that I chuckled a bit after seeing how you guys here inspired them. LOL Praise God for the “faithfulness” of CAP and the “real” -smles- Praise God for the vote that happened today at GC. Let’s continue to pray and press forward with the everlasting gospel while we still have time.

  4. Can someone help me understand how this will affect ordained women elders? In relation to this, my conference president says the vote today changes nothing. Is this true? And when will the confusion end? Why can’t we be clear and specific in our decisions about what God says?

    • Your conference president is correct. The vote changes nothing about women elders. It changes nothing about women pastors, either. They will continue to be commissioned ministers, and the ones who have been ordained in the PU and CU will remain ordained.

  5. Read the book Last Day Events on “The Shaking.” This one quote particularly struck me about the division in the church:
    “Divisions will come in the church. Two parties will be developed. The wheat and tares grow up together for the harvest.—Selected Messages 2:114 (1896). – {LDE 172.3}
    I believe we are almost there, looking at the vote. If this year doesn’t tell us anything else, we really need to see that we MUST get to work with more zeal now than ever! Think about what has happened just recently…..Protestants stretching their hands across the gulf, the Pope’s global activity, the Supreme Court decision, the WO vote today, the stock market today….and the Pope getting ready to address our Congress. Wow! We are here! Let’s spread the gospel and go home! Amen?

  6. We thank the Lord for protecting His church! We earnestly pray that this issue will never be brought up again by His grace!

  7. I deeply appreciate this website. It gave me the information I needed to discuss this subject intelligently with people at all levels of the church, as well as the Scriptural support I needed to research this issue and come to a Spirit-led conclusion as to what God’s Word says on this subject.
    I am grateful that the vote today ended as it did, and pray that President Wilson takes the necessary steps to bring our denomination closer to what God intended it to be. Good night, and God bless!

  8. We can be thankful to God, that the majority has voted “no”. And I thank CAP for the strong fight for the truth and our God. And I am glad, that Elder Wilson are not longer neutral and now spoke against the motion and for the truth.
    Now we must reform, that the elder only men too. Is it possible to make a motion immdediately? The delegates could maybe decide this on friday? Or the GC-Executivecommittee must decide it.

  9. Wonderful news! Praise God for His saving Grace!

    Now, we must unite and rid our ranks of unscriptural ordination of women Elders. Those divisions that are still ordaining women Pastors and Elders must be disciplined!

    “We must as a people arouse and cleanse the camp of Israel. ”

    21MR 380.1

  10. Thank God for this vote. God bless His church.

    I’d like to hear Jan Paulsen’s speech last night. Does anyone have it?

    • Sorry no, ‘cos I watched it ‘live’ on TV.
      Note, it wasn’t a speech, it was a self-opinionated, insulting rant – for 4.5 mins – I timed it!
      The Chairman allowed him to break all the rules that he had asked others to abide by – Jan Paulsen wasn’t interrupted once.
      My eyes were opened to the politics of our leadership, a terribly sad ungodly sight.
      I’m very happy that WO did not succeed this time because it is unbiblical. However, it will rear it’s ugly head again if: the rebels remain, the laity and pastorate do not act and the past mistakes (eg. women as Elders etc) are not rescinded.

  11. Dear Brother Martin, he basically said that delegates should vote yes especially mentioning Africa and South America, by requesting that they do it for the good of Western culture and that they should fully trust the decisions of pro-ordination leaders. Just imagine that we have had him as GC President.

  12. “The vote changes nothing?”

    What would it have changed if it went the other way?

    The vote DOES CHANGE things! WOMEN “pastors” will not have their “calling” to be pastors and their “ministries” confirmed and affirmed and validated as genuine callings from God. The road to ordination now has a road block saying “no women permitted beyond this point. Please exit here. Only qualified men may proceed to ordination and conformation of their ministry.”

    What has “changed?” The hope of women “pastors” being accepted by the Church as ligitimate pastors of the gospel ministry has now been nullified and removed. They will not achieve church ordination and should not be encouraged to get on the road to Ordination knowing full well that they will not reach that goal. They role as “pastors” in now most certainly confined to only the local church only as church elders, IF the local church wants to elect them as such. Conferences should not be allow to appoint women as pastors over church congregations but rather appoint an ordained minister of the gospel to oversee the church.

    • Unfortunately many countries have decided to stop ordaining altogether. A leading pastor in Scandinavia told me personally that he wishes he could be somehow unordained to show his support for his “colleagues”. Maybe he would like to resign…
      Does equality mean no publically defined leaders? How would that work in a business? Or army?

  13. The election and ordination of women as local church elders is the root cause of why this issue has continued to be a thorn in the side of the church for the last few decades. The actions of the Annual Councils in 1975 and 1984 were really out of their jurisdiction as this was a matter of theology and doctrine – not mere policy. They should not have bowed down to culture club pressure after Camp Mohaven. This therefore needs to be corrected. The fact that the 1984 Annual Council acknowledged this as being of a ‘sensitive’ nature strongly suggests that they knew very well that their actions were not in harmony with sound biblical teachings and that the world church would not take this lightly. It was therefore purposefully kept away from a GC Session for discussion and decision and in this regard. In this they have erred. We are reaping the whirlwind.

  14. Based on the comments here, other web sites and forums the fundamental issue of “us against them” continues.

    Here, the consensus seems to be that 40% of Adventists, those who voted yes, need to be born again, or worse, are being led by the devil.

    On the other hand, those 40% are equally convinced that those who voted NO need to be born again or are being led by the devil.

    A mean spirit, cloaked by high sounding spiritual “goodness” is still a mean spirit. I accept at face value, no matter which side you are on, if you are sincere, you may well be sincerely mistaken. Point is, be careful how you treat those you disagree with.

    William Miller was sincerely, truly, mistaken about the Sabbath. BUT, he was still a nice guy and he will be in the kingdom. Laid in his grave early? Yeah, that too, a fate I would rather suffer than be all condemning of others, have hate grow because they don’t see something just as I see it.

    Tired of be being beat up by Adventists who DEMAND, INSIST, SAY I am “un-converted” and lost because I don’t see:
    Daniel 11, Nature of Christ, W.O., Law in Galatians, etc.etc. just as they do.

    Glad the vote WAS “No” by the way…

    • Remember William Miller acted upon the ‘light’ he knew, like the Reformers of the Reformation and many others before and after him throughout history.
      EGW says “Among the heathen are those who worship God ignorantly, those to whom the light is never brought by human instrumentality, yet they will not perish. Though ignorant of the written law of God, they have heard His voice speaking to them in nature, and have done the things that the law required. Their works are evidence that the Holy Spirit has touched their hearts, and they are recognized as the children of God. – {DA 638.2}”

      I do not hate those of the WO ‘yes’ opinion, but I saw them display the following ‘fruits’ during yesterday’s WO session: aggressiveness, impatience, lies, negative prejudice, arrogan
      ce, lack of wisdom, human intellectualism, emotionalism, self-centeredness, rudeness (to name a few). Yet they accuse the ‘no’ opinion of such.
      Also, they possessed a completely different definition of our church’s ‘mission’. It was their ‘buzz word’ but was defined in humanistic or culturally based terms!

      All because they do not want to accept and obey a clear ‘Thus saith the Lord’ from our Creator, our Saviour, the King of Kings, Who founded the SDA church to proclaim a unique message for the end of time.

  15. The chairman allowed Ps Paulsen to have his way thereby denying others from speaking during the very poorly allocated (and ill advised) time slot for delegates to speak, yet the same chairman was overly restrictive and dogmatic with others. It did seem rather obvious to me that the chairman was very biased and was in sympathy with the yes contingent.

    What should be done over the next year before the 2016 Annual Council meeting is that the GC parliamentary rules and policies for meetings should be given to all churches around the globe so that all members are familiar with this and may even practice the same and thus to a certain extent avoid the need for a last minute crash course at such big meetings as this and avoid one being abruptly told “this is not a point of order.” How I wish they would study the bible this way, in terms of strictly following all the rules of the Methods of Bible Study document equally with such vigilance and say to those proposing to elect and ordain women as elders, together with those who have already gone ahead in defiance and elected and ordained pastors that “this is not a point of order” so to speak.

    In other words, why isn’t the same level of overly strict “parliamentary procedure and rule following,” as exercised by the chairperson during the WO discussion and voting, meted out with the same level of intensity and vigilance to those Union Conferences that have approved WO when it was not the purview of Union Conferences to do so. They should have been bluntly told, just as the chairman spoke to delegates, that these renegade Union Conferences were “out of line” and swift proper corrective disciplinary action taken against their insubordination. I suppose they did a “paulsen” on those Union Conferences in allowing them to have their own way whilst reproving and throwing the book at good people such as Dr. Walter Veith and Ps. David Gates.

    In the case of Ps. David Gates, he faced the full might of law in terms of the parliamentary mumbo jumbo rule book being harshly thrown at him; yet leaders and pastors in Union Conferences who have acted in insubordination, even misleading members into false teachings such as WO and voting to accept such unbiblical practices are allowed to prosper and flourish and are allowed carte blanche to do as they please.

    The David Gates incident provides ample evidence supporting my suggestion that double standards are being applied in terms of the rule book being thrown at some and not even a slap on the wrist for others. How so?

    • Well said Trevor, your observations are correct, double-standards exist.

      This GC session has shown me that many of our leaders cannot be trusted to be custodians of God’s truth and His Church.

      Incredulously, their blatantly rebellious words and deeds clearly display that they do not want to follow God’s blueprint, yet they are allowed to freely operate and mislead.

  16. To Ernest and All: Yes, you are right. If we don’t submit to Christ through the Holy Spirit, we can allow our defense of truth to make us obnoxious. We really should desire all to be saved. Laurel Damsteegt mentions this in her conclusion of “The Forgotten Story of 1989.” The messages to the seven churches hold relevant warnings: in our defense of what is right, we can be in danger of losing our first love (as did Ephesus), but we can also be guilty of tolerating biblical error. The last message to Laodicea is a death to self in all its forms and applies to everyone. However, I’ve never felt that the WO issue during the past thirty years was a “side” issue and equivalent to some of your examples. It’s an erroneous belief system whose leaven will always be disunity. In closing (and retrospect), forty-five years ago today (June 9, 1970) I was a five-year-old boy sitting in my home church’s sanctuary in Woodland, California, on the last day of my first Vacation Bible School. Our two-week theme song, which I’ve loved ever since, was “Are You Ready for Jesus To Come?” Here are the lyrics: (1) The theme of the Bible is Jesus and how He died to save men. The plan of salvation assures us He’s coming back again. (Chorus) Are you ready for Jesus to come? Are you faithful in all that you do? Have you fought a good fight? Have you stood for the right? Have others seen Jesus in you? Are you ready to stand in your place? Are you ready to look in His face? Can you look up and say, “This is my Lord!” Are you ready for Jesus to come? (2) Don’t cling to the world and its treasure, this earth will soon pass away. Oh, give Him your love without measure He’s calling you today. (Chorus)

  17. Ps. Paulsen was at least honest in speaking on behalf of all proponents of WO in his expressing that WO was a matter of cultural preference.

    There is no strong biblical arguments for WO. The fact that so many voted yes shows that Adventists are not united in our faith and belief and are in fact deeply divided. To trivialise WO as a small distraction is only acknowledging being in a state of denial.

    The Adventist liberal left has moved extremely left – and by default the ‘middle’ has undeniably moved further left also. The issue of WO provides proof that this in that so-called traditional Adventists crossed floors by joining hands with liberal extremists on this issue by supporting culture over sound biblical belief. Worse still is that they tried to use the bible to make there case. How sad. Then there was a female delegate at the PUC Session wearing earrings? Is this the norm in the cultural camps of Adventism? Talking unity is one thing: walking unity is another. [Amos 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed?]

    The fact that alternative hermeneutics were used and even that some would suggest that a second alternative interpretation is possible within the context of the Methods of Bible Study document shows clearly how leading Adventist theologians have drifted away from the plain teachings of the word of God. Can our theologians then be fully trusted? No! We should test all things with the scriptures, whether they be of God – or not. WO has awakened the Church to the stark reality that we are divided as a people like Judah and Israel. The call for repentance is so appropriate for our lukewarm condition for which Christ only provides remedy: His righteousness, faith and love – and the eye salve to discern between truth and error is so much needed. Let’s face it and admit that from the outcome of the WO vote it is quite clear that the Church is in a lukewarm condition. The compromise with cultural dictates and worldliness; together with the buying power of academic and economic wealth, has heavily contributed to this condition.

  18. I praise The Lord in Jesus name and thank all those that voted no. Those who voted yes, I pray they go back to the bible truth and the teachings of Our Savior Jesus Christ. This should bring us together and make us a stronger church for the Glory of our Heavenly Father.

  19. PRAY FOR NORTH AMERICAN DIVISION. Satan has tried to ensure that the head is sick and it now is. We must pray for the membership in North America, for the leaders. The outlook is not good. Just visit there and see and listen. Move around. Our Seminary at Andrews is a sad shadow of a corpse. Occasionally you get a miracle but you listen to the church services there and you walk away saddened: so anemic so Pentecostal. Someone went to sleep on Adventist Education and the result is what it is. We have a ministry that is dissonant and sometimes so famished itself but full of attitude, theater and letters. Where are Spirit men and where is Adventist Preaching? Where is Vision? Where is the reality of eternal things? Where is the truth? Little wonder half the church has no issue with error. What are they fed every Sabbath? Shouldn’t someone just ensure the preaching is sound and the services are ADVENTIST for a start?

  20. The day we called preachers of present truth; attempts to study and apply prophecy to current events sensationalists was the day we lost it. We are a prophetic church with a prophetic message and at any one time we should be studying current events to be sure of where we are in time in order to establish duty, pace and priorities. We beat about and flounder in our plans and are always caught out because we do not understand the enemy is real, intelligent and proactive. We need to know what the enemy is doing in order to work smart. We are largely illiterate on current affairs; are not aware of the drift of things and plan like we have all the time to make all the mistakes in the world and yes, we will address it at the NEXT GC. Thank God He neither slumbers nor sleeps and will take matters into His own hands. My point is simple, we need eye salve to see. We are large naive and clueless and drift from crisis and ineptitude to ineptitude. We waste a lot of means with our simple mindedness. It will not do. We need to see the enemy, understand him, pray for both vision and courage. This was a close call. We should all wake up. This is a war, not a high society golf game. We need to be clear and decided and consistent. We should be zealous and repent from our current flirtations with the world. We have the word of God for a guide. That is Adventism. The times demand that we be the light in the coming darkness. God raised us up for NOW.

  21. 2Co 11:26 In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; Gal 2:4 And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage: FALSE BRETHREN…..2Co 11:14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
    2Co 11:15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works. SATAN’S MINISTERS. Paul did not pursue them. Neither should we but it saved his life to know the plan of the enemy to ambush him. We must be alert to the reality that the battle front is INTERNAL as well as EXTERNAL. Nothing new but we have “MORE TO FEAR FROM WITHIN”. Our answer is simple: FOCUS on our WORK as GOD HAS DEFINED IT. We have a simple message to give to the world. We have be delinquent and derelict.Things have been revealed to me that make me afraid. The One of authority declared: “Seventh-day Adventists are on losing ground in every place where they have established institutions; and the reason for this is that they have lost their first love. Let them remember from whence they have fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else God will come to them quickly, and will remove their candlestick out of his place, except they repent.” {PH151 47.1} Just visit our mission schools, our hospitals, everything. See how we vote. Listen to our plans. We need to seek the Lord with fasting and prayer and stop mocking those who have for years been warning us of danger. It is real.

  22. I am quoting Ellen G. WHITE. This was revealed to her. We have been losing ground for years and gaining favor with the world to the same extent. We have a new Seventh Day Adventist church and it is not anywhere near to the OLD in spirit and vision. It is a difficult animal run by professional bureaucrats with connections in strange places and it shows with the motions on the floor and sentiments and programs passed on to the world church especially the third world. It is a mindless clueless compliance to “the higher organization” that has neither due diligence nor feasibility and cost benefit analysis. We talk of mission as a theological accreditation to some higher sphere of learning. We are lost. We all need to come down to the simplicity of “WE HAVE A WORLD TO WARN”. It is not a pleasant message but it needs to be given. We live in a world that increasingly does NOT FEAR GOD, gives HIM no credit for ANYTHING. The world is COLLAPSING from the weight of apostasy and drunkenness all around us. Why is it hard to preach “BABYLON IS FALLEN”. The Beast is real. The Mark is Real and the WRATH OF GOD is real. We soft pedal on everything to the point of making no impression. When we speak we put people to sleep. It ought to change. Because we will not speak clearly and forcefully, the world largely ignores us. We are not speaking fiction. The world IS ENDING and the issues we are now debating clearly show how sleepy we have been. These movements have been going on in our higher offices and places of power for years, changing and redirecting us and everyone who tried to wake us up was derided and dismissed if not disfellowshiped. Well…. We need to wake up and light our lamps and unfurl our banners. Those three angels that have been pulled down and shot down for years by duplicitous loyalties need to fly again. When we are faithful to the message and its spirit, we will see all other matters clearly.

  23. How is it that we have had men for years in the highest of our offices who got away with deriding the Spirit of Prophecy, working against it while professing to respect it. And now, they patronize the church of God because we have treated them like little Popes. The third world is particularly guilt of reverencing man to the point of infallibility and it should not surprise anyone that the Ex President could patronize Africa and the church the way he did. That is how Africa has treated leaders.


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