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BREAKING: Annual Council Votes Women's Ordination Question for 2015 GC Session

After a long day of discussion on women's ordination, delegates approved a question to send on for deliberation and vote in San Antonio, Texas.

SILVER SPRING - At approximately 5:37 local time, Annual Conference delegates voted to approve language crafted by The General Conference and Division Officers (GCDO), that will now go to delegates at the 2015 General Conference Session in San Antonio, Texas. The language from GCDO came in the form of a question, posted below.

Delegates will be asked,

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 commitees, 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 discussion of ordination, and specifically the issue of whether or not women might be ordained as pastors, spanned two business sessions, the first from 9:00 am until approximately noon, the second from 2:00 pm until just after the final vote.

Before delegates voted, they heard three summary presentations that represented the three positions that emerged from the Theology of Ordination Study Committee (TOSC). Biblical Research Institute scholar Clinton Wahlen presented Position 1, which favored denying ordination to women pastors in elders, and supported male headship. Walla Walla University professor Carl Cosaert presented Position 2, which would allow those church fields that support ordination to proceed. Andrews University professor Nicholas Miller presented Position 3, which sought to marry the male headship language of Position 1 with the variability in practice of Position 2.

When the floor opened for discussion, countless delegates spoke to the motion both in favor and against. The final vote was 243 in favor, 44 opposed, and 3 in abstention.

Check back for a full report on the day's proceedings soon.

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I guess no means maybe?  If you are persistent enough with enough no's you might get as yes?

This is a good compromise.   The no vote will obviously win.  Note that the question is not to allow or deny women's ordination though, it is to allow deny creating the provisions.  The 3 divisions that already ordain women do not need to have their executive committees create provisions for the ordination of women since their constituencies have already done so - so they are grandfathered in.  If another division wants to do so they just need to move before the General Conference session.   The Annual Council did a good job of threading the needle.  No one gets everything they want, but it keeps the church together.

This is essentially the same question that was asked in 1995 and as was denied for the 2010 Session. I agree with Heisenberg that this is just a question of keep asking the same question until you get the reply you want.

The three Divisions that are already ordaining women pastors need this voted in to ratify what they have already decided. Without a "yes" from the GC Session all the Divisions are doing is ordaining women who, according to the criteria set, are not eligible to be ordained.

The idea that any subsidiary organisation below the GC in Session can change the criteria for ordination is wrong. They do not have that power devolved to them, if they did there would be no need to put the above question to the delegates. It is not surprising that this question comes from an Annual Council as they are heavily weighted towards the Division in which they are held - and as every second Council is held in the NAD that's when they have the numbers to pass such motions.

I suggest that those pro-WO have looked at the three suggestions from the TOSC and decided that #2 is their best chance of success and so have decided to pre-empt whether they feel that  any discussion by trying to get the same thing they were lobbying for last time. I wonder whether they think that the third world countries have now been "educated" enough to secure a "yes " vote? 

Shannon said, "Note that the question is not to allow or deny women's ordination though, it is to allow deny creating the provisions."

Of course it is a question of allowing or denying WO - what other outcome can there be from this question? What the Annual Council is asking is for Divisions to be able to decide whether to ordain women or not without reference to the worldwide Church. Once they get a "yes" vote they will immediately begin ordaining women. I suspect that if they get a "no" vote they will also immediately ordain women as that has been the reaction that we have seen over the last two decades.

If they don't get this vote the GC will have to grasp the nettle and bring the NAD, TED (& SPD?) under control.

The fact that so many people don't see the compromise shows that it is having its intended effect. 

I guess if you stalk an organization long enough and don't believe no means no, anything is possible.

O.K. Heisenberg

What jobs can a woman do in our church. Can they be hosptial chaplians? Can they particpate in service ministry? Can women lead as Christian counselors? Can a woman be a youth leader? Can a woman be an evalgelist or a sabbath school teacher? Can a woman lead out the the establishement and building of a new Church?

 

Leon

Yes it is amazing what you can do with words.

Christ was about self sacrifice

Womans Ordination is about self promoting.

Those who reads their Bible can see where those comes from.

What jobs can a woman do in our church. Can they be hosptial chaplians? Can they particpate in service ministry? Can women lead as Christian counselors? Can a woman be a youth leader? Can a woman be an evalgelist or a sabbath school teacher? Can a woman lead out the the establishement and building of a new Church?

 

Leon

Ian, you are acting like the grandfathering of the 3 conferencs is some sort of unintentional oversight. It is not, it is part of the compromise. No one is happy with the solution but it will keep the church together.

Why is it there are six ordination certificates for EGW, yet we are told she was not ordained?

We got told that to cover up a contradiction. 

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