2012 Special Constituency






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5427 Twin Knolls Road
Columbia, MD  21045
Tel: (410) 997-3414
Tel: (301) 596-0800

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The Columbia Union Conference convened a special constituency meeting on July 29, 2012. This page includes statements, articles, resources, videos, links relating to this special meeting and the main topic of discussion -- women's ordination. Please continue to pray with us about this issue.
September 26, 2012

Inclusive Ministerial Ordination: An Appeal for Understanding

We acknowledge the concerns and questions our recent special constituency vote raised among some of our church family and administrators and regret that some misunderstood our motives and intentions. We unwaveringly stand in solidarity with our worldwide church family in faith, belief, doctrine and mission and appeal for understanding.

We were compelled to act on our conscience and convictions because we believe it will and already is having a positive impact on our churches, ministries and mission; we believe it is morally and ethically right; we believe that God calls whom He chooses and our responsibility and privilege is to fully recognize His proven calls; we want to see new generations of members unabashedly engage in the mission of our church; and we want to do all we can to hasten the promised return of Christ.

We accept, respect and understand that practicing inclusive ministerial ordination would not work well in all parts of the world, and while we in no way wish to force others to take this step, we believe it is necessary in our field and in the context of the culture in which we minister.

We pray that our action will not close doors, but open the way for the Holy Spirit to continue moving mightily in our union and beyond. We pray that those who may not be ready to embrace this change in their church, conference, union or division will understand our need and the opportunity it provides us to grow God’s kingdom in our part of the vineyard. And we pray that we all will earnestly seek to navigate these uncharted waters in a way that brings glory to God, strengthens our church family and advances Christ’s mission.

In His Service,
Dave Weigley, Rob Vandeman, Seth Bardu
Columbia Union Conference Officers
Columbia Union Conference Executive Committee


Ordination Services

Four Women Pastors Ordained in Ohio
--Read Article
--Watch Video


May 17, 2012--Columbia Union Executive Committee Calls Special Constituency Meeting to Authorize Ordinations Without Regard to Gender

June 29, 2012--General Conference Official Statement

July 23, 2012--Columbia Union Leaders Call for Day of Prayer

July 29, 2012--Columbia Union Constituency Overwhelmingly Approves  Ordination Without Regard to Gender

September 26, 2012--Inclusive Ministerial Ordination: An Appeal for Understanding

October 16, 2012--Statement on Church Polity, Procedures, and Resolution of Disagreements in the Light of Recent Union Actions on Ministerial Ordination

October 31, 2013--Adventist Officers Release Statement Regarding A Local Conference’s Recent Election Of President

Watch the Session

Watch the Entire Special Constituency Meeting
Watch the Ad Hoc Committee Presentation
Watch President Dave Weigley's Closing Remarks

Visitor Articles

July 2012 Visitor Articles

July 29, 2012--Columbia Union Constituents Overwhelmingly Affirm Women Pastors Through Ordination

August 1, 2012--Constituency Live Stream Expands Audience, Social Media Reach

November 20, 2013--Two Ohio Pioneers Receive Emeritus Ministerial Credentials


1973 Mohaven Committee Overview
1996 Seventh-day Adventist Encyclopedia
2008 Columbia Union Executive Committee Minutes
2012 Columbia Union Ad Hoc Committee Report
2012 GC Spring Council Report
2012 Spring Council Devotional by Jan Paulsen
Ellen White Quotes on Women in Pastoral Ministry
GC Theology of Ordination Timeline
Josephine Benton Book - Called by God (available at adventsource.org)
Six Points on the Ordination of Women Issue--By Gary Patterson, Retired GC Field Secretary
A Response to the General Conference Official Statement
Headship, Submission, and Equality in Scripture--By Richard M. Davidson


Presentations from the 2012 NAD Women’s Clergy Conference

July 28, 2012--Sligo Video Presentation, History of Ordination, Part 1, by Darius Jankiewicz, Professor of New Testament Theology, Andrews University Theological Seminary

July 28, 2012--Sligo Video Presentation, History of Ordination, Part 2, by Darius Jankiewicz, Professor of New Testament Theology, Andrews University Theological Seminary

Pacific Union Conference Special Constituency Webpage

Who Runs the Church: Understanding the Unity, Structure and Authority of the Seventh-day Adventist Church
A Talking Paper by Gerry Chudleigh--English

Who Runs the Church: Understanding the Unity, Structure and Authority of the Seventh-day Adventist Church
A Talking Paper by Gerry Chudleigh--Spanish



Thanks to all of you who have shared your thoughts on the July 29, 2012, Columbia Union Conference Special Constituency Meeting. We appreciate hearing from you. To share further comments with union leaders, please email comments@columbiaunion.net.