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BREAKING: North Pacific Union Votes to Cancel Ordination Constituency Session


The North Pacific Union (NPUC) has voted to cancel a previously-planned special constituency session aimed at discussing ordaining women.

The decision not to hold the special session came at the end of today’s NPUC Executive Committee Meeting, and was announced on Twitter just after 4:00pm Pacific Time.

The NPUC received tremendous pressure to cancel the planned session, including from General Conference President Ted N. C. Wilson, who sent a message to NPUC President Max Torkelson through the office of North American Division President Daniel R. Jackson. Wilson sent his message the day before the Executive Committee Meeting. Through the office of the General Conference Secretariat, Wilson sent a lengthy document that asserted that unions do not have the ability to establish criteria for ordination, and that they exercise “delegated authority” that derives from the General Conference.

Wilson wrote the following message, addressed simply to “Colleagues”:

Dear Colleagues:

Greetings to each of you.  I hope you are doing well and have settled into your important and great task of mission activities and outreach for the Lord after attending the General Conference Session.  What a privilege to encourage every member to be part of this great, heaven-entrusted mission to the world as the Holy Spirit opens the way.

At the General Conference, we have been busy with many items that require attention for the preparation of Annual Council and a new quinquennium including mission focus, personnel assignments, committee reconfigurations, planning for meetings, organizing schedules, etc.  I know you have been involved in similar activities.  What a privilege to serve the Lord and His Advent movement during these last days of earth’s history!

Attached you will find a document from General Conference Secretariat, which has supervisory responsibility for the General Conference Working Policy (GC WP), entitled “Unions and Ordination to the Gospel Ministry—Comprehensive Working Policy Explanation.”  In the document, you will also find a smaller section at the beginning for a quick review of the subject entitled “Brief Summary” which is derived from the larger and fuller “Comprehensive Working Policy Explanation” which follows.  The document is provided since there have been some who have proposed the idea that unions have the full prerogative to decide about all aspects of ordination including criteria.  As the GC Secretariat document shows, the authority for the unions to make decisions about the approval process for ordination candidates is delegated by the GC Executive Committee and is limited to that review and approval process.  The authority for setting the criteria for ordination is not delegated since that is the purview of the world church as outlined in GC WP L 35 and voted on by world representation at Annual Council.

This fully-researched policy and historical review document by GC Secretariat is being sent to you to assist where GC WP is not being correctly understood or interpreted in its entirety.  It can also be instructive for all fields in relation to the need for careful understanding of all General Conference Working Policy which is voted by Annual Councils with representation from around the globe.  Division presidents, we request that today, or latest by tomorrow, that you send the attached GC Secretariat document to your fellow division officers and to all union presidents.  You may wish to share it with others who may need the information for a full understanding of the worldwide policies covering the entire church as contained in the GC WP.  The union presidents can then immediately share the GC Secretariat document with the local conference/mission presidents.

If it is deemed necessary in the future, the General Conference may additionally distribute the document to church membership through various distribution networks such as ANN and AR Online.  However, at this time, this material is being provided to you and the church administrative structure for your use and distribution.  If needed, you may also wish to distribute this document to membership through union papers or other news release formats.

Let us pray that this carefully-researched document from GC Secretariat will help in the full understanding of GC WP as well as the intent of GC WP and GC Session actions which all are to uphold as administrators according to GC WP.  Thank you for your kind assistance with this matter.  May the Holy Spirit guide us in this and many other activities to help the church press together in mission unity and pursue the Lord’s important mission task entrusted to us—lifting up Christ and His righteousness as we proclaim the three angels’ messages in anticipation of Christ’s soon coming.  Let us lean completely on the Lord as we encourage and engage everyone—men, women and children—in “Total Member Involvement” as His prophetic movement proclaiming a prophetic message on a prophetic mission.




UPDATE: The NPUC issued a statement concerning the vote via the Gleaner, the official NPUC magazine.


Jared Wright is Managing Editor of

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