How Money Got Us Into Trouble
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How Money Got Us Into Trouble
The Push Continues
Within weeks after this vote was taken, the Sligo church, located only a few miles from General Conference headquarters, ordained some women pastors, and a little later, the La Sierra University church followed suit.

As we have observed elsewhere, within three months the NAD appointed a commission to seek ways to enlarge the scope of women as pastors. At about the same time, the idea arose of conducting “commissioning services” for women pastors.

The Commissioning Service

Thus far, the conference treasurers, departmental directors/secretaries, and institutional managers who had been granted “commissioned” status had merely received notification in the mail.

Suddenly, such privacy seemed inadequate. Urgent voices insisted that the appointment of women to commissioned minister status should be made more public; more like, well, more like an ordination service. Thus the “commissioning service” was developed, complete with prayers, Scripture readings, a sermon, a charge, and the laying on of hands, all expanded to fill perhaps a whole hour at a large gathering, like a camp meeting.

In this way a process that began with a plan to reduce income taxes (a) produced the concept that ordination is merely a matter of church policy, and (b) developed into the concept that commissioned women ministers are equivalent to ordained male ministers.

When they learn about it, many Seventh-day Adventists consider it a very surprising (and interesting—and saddening) history.

[EDITOR'S NOTE: At the close of this article as originally published in ADVENTISTS AFFIRM, a note from the editorial board indicated that factual material had “been derived from phone calls to administrators at all levels of the church, from materials written by Bert Haloviak, Kit Watts, Samuel Koranteng-Pipim, from additional research, and from the experience of the editors.”]

* This article is a reprint of chapter 13 of Prove All Things: A Response to Women in Ministry (2000). It was first published in Adventists Affirm , Fall 1998, pp. 18-22.
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