In this short article, former GC Executive Committee member Ben J. Leibelt weighs-in on questions of process. FIND IT HERE.
On February 17, 2013, Adventist World published an article titled “WANTED: More Female Pastors—Essential to the Harvest.” The article outlined how the North American Division would begin a process of educating church members about the necessity of hiring more female pastors. It stated that the NAD would proceed regardless of the findings of the Theology of Ordination Study Committee. It stated that the hiring of women pastors would be financially incentivized for conferences in the NAD. Larry Kirkpatrick responds. FIND IT HERE.
New item here by Lee Roy Holmes. What do we do when what we want may conflict with how the larger church is led to follow its Lord? FIND IT HERE.
Larry Kirkpatrick responds to the NAD Best Practices newsletter. The March 24, 2013 issue carries the article, “Where There is One There Should Be Twenty—Ellen White on Female Leadership,” along with a video by an Andrews University Theology professor. Pastor Kirkpatrick offers a brief review of these materials. Find it here.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE TO ALL SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTS
NPUC Supporting Pastors
PO Box 19424
Spokane, WA 99219
North Pacific Union Conference (NPUC), North American Division, February 24, 2013: The NPUC Executive Committee (Ex Com) on February 20 reconsidered their previous decision to call a special constituency session to address Women’s Ordination. A majority of the Executive Committee chose not to rescind their November 14, 2013 decision but voted to confirm their previous decision. The Ex Com vote completely disregarded the concerns expressed by the NPUC Supporting Pastors in their January 30, 2013 letter to the presidents.
Ex Com actually plans to hold a special constituency session of the NPUC between November 2014 and February 2015, a full four months before the July 2015 General Conference session. This, in a Union in which no consensus exists within the constituency in favor of Women’s Ordination.
The published report of the latest Ex Com action in the February 21, 2013 Gleaner article, “NPUC Updates its Ordination Plan,” predicts action beyond even that taken by the Columbia and Pacific Unions. It indicates that if the GC does not recommend and vote the ordination of women at the GC World Quinquennial Session of July, 2015, “the NPUC has resolved to then move ahead on its own.” The NPUC—months before the GC session—may unilaterally dismiss July 2015 Quinquennial Session action by the world church. Such action could place at risk the existence of the North Pacific Union as a unit of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
The General Conference is engaged in a substantial study process through the Theology of Ordination Study Committee. But NPUC Ex Com has reactivated its Ad Hoc Committee on Women in Leadership to prepare additional “educative” materials and to develop a timeline for action. What “action”? The Gleaner describes an intentionality to plan for Women’s Ordination independently of the world church.
The Union paper continues to operate with a clear bias favoring the ordination of women to headship positions.
The NPUC Supporting Pastors stated that they shall continue to offer their views in contrast. OrdinationTruth.com is an alternative source for information regarding views on Women’s Ordination not published in NAD union papers. The Supporting Pastors reissued their call for that manifestation of the type of Biblical unity illustrated, taught and practiced by the Seventh-day Adventist Church from its beginning until now according to the Scriptural model of Acts 15:1-24. This unity could be expressed by rescinding the February 20, 2013 action to hold a special constituency meeting before the 2015 General Conference session.
The Supporting Pastors recognize the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists and its voted directives at duly called General Conference sessions as the ultimate human expression of ecclesiastical authority in Seventh-day Adventist Church polity. Unilateral actions by unions, including North Pacific Union, are invalid. The Supporting Pastors stated that they are continuing to pray for divine guidance for Union Leadership concerning this issue.
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On Wednesday and Thursday, February 13 and 14, the Lake Union Conference considered the question of Women’s Ordination. Presentations in favor or opposition were made by presenters including Darius Jankowitz, Clinton Wahlen, P. Gerard Damsteegt, and Richard M. Davidson. The first motion was to recommend that the General Conference permit Divisions and Unions to ordain without regard to gender. That motion lost 18 to 12. The final motion is as below: Continue reading
The above short video was an urgent and humble appeal by General Conference President Ted N.C. Wilson to the Columbia Union Conference NOT to proceed to vote itself into opposition to the world church (which it did afterwards). Nevertheless, as the North Pacific Union Conference Executive Committee prepares to meet February 18-20, 2013, this is important food for thought for each and every member. The NPUC Supporting Pastors urgently desire that the NPUC avoid the disunity and shame of insubordination that would result from similar independent action. We are part of a world church. We respectfully request that the NPUC decision to hold a special constituency meeting be rescinded (ed. note: The NPUC executive committee has indicated that there will indeed be a similar special constituency meeting about February 2015).
The North Pacific Union Conference has issued a statement in response to NPUC Supporting Pastors. You will find it here: http://www.gleaneronline.org/2013/02/concerned-nw-pastors-speak-out-on-ordination/. The ranks of the Supporting Pastors have increased. Names listed here: List of OrdinationTruth.com NPUC Supporting Pastors.
The initial news release by the NPUC Supporting Pastors can be found here.
The North Pacific Union Conference will meet for its regularly scheduled Executive Committee meeting in eight days, February 18-20 at Ridgefield, Washington.
New article by Jim Reinking published, “Listening to God’s Voice.” Reinking briefly discusses unity, proper church order, and shows how Heaven is calling us to respect the voice of the General Conference. Find it here.