The North American Division (NAD) of Seventh-day Adventists acknowledges the vote that took place earlier today at the 60th General Conference Session, not allowing for regional accommodation of those world regions asking to allow for the ordination of women. After much prayerful study and discussion, the delegates voted 1381-977 to not pass the motion on the session floor.
The leadership of the NAD is saddened by this vote, but respects the decision of the world body in session and we are committed to continual cooperation and fellowship with the world church. While today’s vote does not allow for each division of the church to ordain women to gospel ministry, we will continue to follow General Conference policy by commissioning women pastors, and ordaining women elders and deaconesses.
Many individuals in the NAD have weighed in on the conversation preceding this vote, and some of these conversations have become emotionally charged. NAD President Daniel Jackson shared his desire for the division after the vote. “We ask our members to focus their energies on the one thing we can agree with, the mission of the church. God has called all of us to serve Him in ministry, whether we are recognized by the church or not. The NAD recognizes that every person no matter his or her race, age or gender has a vital role to play in sharing the gospel message with the world. Let us be united as a family that is bound by the love and grace of Jesus Christ. While we may disagree on various approaches to ministry, let us all agree on the need to reach all people with the message of hope and wholeness, and a new life in Jesus. We will continue with our intention of placing as many women into pastoral ministry as possible. We affirm the important role they play in reaching all of God’s children. We ask that all members of the Adventist Church keep praying for God’s guidance as we move forward in mission.”