On November 4, 2013, during the North American Division year-end meeting, the executive committee voted to receive the report from the North American Division Theology of Ordination Study Committee. Below is the article released in the NADNewsPoints newsletter by the North American Division Office of Communication regarding the actions taken at the meeting.--Atlantic Union Conference Office of Communication
Executive Committee Votes to Receive Report from Theology of Ordination Study Committee
According to Gordon Bietz, president of Southern Adventist University and chair of the North American Division's Theology of Ordination Study Committee, if you Google the word "ordination" as it relates to the Seventh-day Adventist Church, you will find more than 375,000 hits. Bietz told this to the North American Division (NAD) Executive members at the beginning of the business session on Monday, November 4, 2013, during the North American Division's Year-end Meeting.
Dwight K. Nelson, a member of the NAD Theology of Ordination Committee Study, presents his report. The rest of the committee members are seated in the background. [Photo by Dan Weber/NAD Communication]
Bietz and the Study Committee presented their extensive report to the North American Division Executive Committee from work that began in May 2012. The NAD Theology of Ordination Study Committee was constructed in response to the General Conference's request for all divisions to put in place a committee to study the theology of ordination and its implications. "As we looked to staff this committee, we sought for balance and different perspectives that will represent all viewpoints of the Division," said G. Alexander Bryant, NAD executive secretary.
Upon the North American Division's review of the committee's report, it will then be given to the General Conference's Theology of Ordination Committee along with the other 12 division reports. The 13 division reports will then be synthesized by the General Conference's Theology of Ordination Committee along with other material. After that, the Committee will present the combined report to the 2014 Annual Council.
The following is the timeline as it pertains to the world Church's timeline regarding the Theology of Ordination:
- From December 2013 - June 2014 - The General Conference's Theology of Ordination Study Committee will analyze the materials received from the divisions and prepares a combined report.
- June 2014 - Report is reviewed by General Conference executive officers.
- June 2014 - Report is reviewed with the President's Executive Administrative Council (PREXAD) and the General Conference Administrative Committee (ADCOM).
- October 2014 - General Conference administration process the report to the 2014 Annual Council
- October 2014 - Annual Council will review the report and, if needed, take any appropriate action. If voted material needs to be placed on the 2015 General Conference Session agenda, it will be processed accordingly.
Members of the North American Division's Theology of Ordination Study Committee include:
Gordon Bietz, D.Min., Chairman
President of Southern Adventist University
Kyoshin Ahn, Ph.D.
Associate Secretary, North American Division
Dedrick Blue, D.Min.
Senior Pastor, Northeastern Conference
JoAnn Davidson, Ph.D.
Professor, Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary
Kendra Haloviak-Valentine, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, La Sierra University
Lourdes Morales-Gudmundsson, Ph.D.
Professor, La Sierra University
Dwight Nelson, D.Min.
Pastor, Michigan Conference
Leslie N. Pollard, Ph.D., D.Min
President, Oakwood University
Edwin Reynolds, Ph.D.
Professor, Southern Adventist University
Stephen Richardson, Ph.D.
Ministerial Director, Allegheny East Conference
Russell Seay, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Oakwood University
Tara Vincross, M.Div.
Pastor, Pennsylvania Conference
Clinton Wahlen, Ph.D.
Associate Director, Biblical Research Institute
Ivan Williams, D.Min.
Director, Ministerial Department, North American Division
The NAD's Theology of Ordination Study Committee is recommending to the NAD Executive Committee:
"That we receive the Biblical study of ordination prepared by the North American Division Theology of Ordination Study Committee and affirm the conclusion that all people, men and women, may receive ordination as an affirmation of the call of God, and that the North American Division support the authorization of each division to consider, through prayer and under the direction of the Holy Spirit, its most appropriate approach to the ordination of women to gospel ministry."
The vote was recorded:
182 people voted yes
31 people voted no
3 people abstained from voting
As stated in the above timeline, the North American Division Executive Committee will follow the guidelines set by the General Conference and present the NAD Study Committee findings to the Annual Council in preparation for the 2015 General Conference Session in San Antonio, Texas.
Listed below are the reports from the NAD's Theology of Ordination Study Committee:
More information can be found at www.nadordination.com.
About Atlantic Union Conference
Founded in 1901, the Atlantic Union Conference is the headquarters for the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the northeast United States and the islands of Bermuda. It serves six conferences, more than 109,900 members who worship in 572 churches and 57 groups, 63 schools, one health care facility, and numerous community-based ministries.
Ednor A. P. Davison, communication director/editor