Commissioned ministers can lead North American conferences, leaders vote

By: Mark A. Kellner, Adventist Review
Date: 12/02/10
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According to a statement from the North American Division (NAD), "This ... is an issue of equality and opportunity for all leaders who hold the commissioned minister credentials."

In a separate action, leaders said, committee members "are requesting for the General Conference's Administrative Committee to grant a variance to the model constitution to accommodate the unique needs of the North American Division with the insertion of 'conference/mission president should be an ordained/commissioned minister' in its policy language."

The question of the role of women in ministry, which was taken off the table for the 2010 General Conference Session in Atlanta is one which draws a variety of opinions. Daniel R. Jackson, president of the church in North America, said the topic was raised because a commitment was made at the 2009 NAD meeting, and, he said, "a promise is to keep."

Virtually every speaker supported the measure, and the vote was nearly unanimous, with only a handful of "no" votes. In 2008, the Adventist Church reported having 4,197 ordained and licensed ministers and 5,224 churches in the North American Division, which comprises the United States, Canada, Bermuda and the islands of Saint Pierre et Miquelon. Globally, the church had 23,040 ministers and 65,961 congregations in that same year.

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