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Although the Church of England ordains women as priests (approved in 1992), it has not allowed women to become bishops. In a vote Tuesday, 36% of the laity defeated a motion to grant women that right. The motion required a two-thirds majority in all three of the church’s voting houses—bishops, clergy and laity. (Read TIME’s report here. (The Anglican Churches of North America, South Africa, and New Zealand already have women bishops.)
Los cambios en la relación entre la Asociación General (AG) y la División de América del Norte (NAD) fueron el centro de la sesión de este año del Consejo Anual, que concluyó el 17 de octubre. No sólo no había respuesta a la acción de las uniones que habían votado ordenar sin distinción de sexo, también estaba el dinero.
Changes in the relationship between the General Conference and the North American Division were at the heart of this year’s Annual Council session that concluded on Oct. 17. Not only was there the action responding to the unions that had voted to ordain without regard to gender, there was also the money.
A woman preached to the Annual Council session on Wednesday. Galina Stele, the first woman to earn a Doctorate of Ministerial Studies at Andrews University in 1996 gave the devotional for the morning.
In the parade of projects across the General Conference auditorium stage that followed two particularly caught my attention because they had to do with children.
Precisely at 2 pm, General Conference Vice President Mike Ryan called to order the most highly anticipated session of Annual Council. A statement on church polity, procedures, and resolution of disagreements in the light of recent union actions on ministerial ordination was to be considered.
A goodly number of women visitors helped to swell the crowd to full house status. After taking care of several short business items, Ryan turned to President Ted Wilson to introduce Item 112.
Policies were once again the center of attention at Annual Council on Monday.
There was even a mock reading of the Working Policy as though it was Scripture in a skit that made the point that policy is not Scripture. It is not inspired—it is simply a summary of procedures that have been prepared by the General Conference. Policy can be changed.
No, today was not the day. For those wondering when Annual Council 2012 will turn its attention to a discussion of Women’s Ordination, the answer is that a debate on the topic of women’s ordination is not technically included on the agenda. However, it looks like Tuesday afternoon will be the time when a statement will be brought to the floor regarding a response to the two North American Union constituencies that voted to proceed with the ordination without regard to gender. The statement is not included in the delegate notebook.
On a day as bright and crisp as a Fuji apple, children came to the Seventh-day Adventst Church headquarters for the Sabbath worship service. They came with their delegate parents, and one even cried during the service making it really seem like church, rather than another committee meeting.
In the back of the auditorium, Hope TV had a set where Brad Thorp, president of the channel, interviewed guests between Sabbath School and Church. In the front, a bountiful display of mums and pumpkins brought the beauty of autumn inside.
Looking at the agendas for the premeetings that began at the General Conference World Headquarters on Thursday, October 4, it would seem that church leaders would be exhausted before the official Annual Council sessions even begins. The schedule has stretched through Sunday and is full of committee meetings, division advisory sessions, and agency board meetings from 8:00 am until 8:00 pm.