General Conference Answers Questions Regarding Its Leadership

Editor's Note: On October 8, 2018, the General Conference released the following statement on the Adventist News Network. It is reprinted here in its entirety:

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

Where was the follow up question - “Doesn’t the result of the vote actually mean that the church, with regards to ordination, stay at status quo? What did the vote actually mean?”
The actual question that was asked was a spin and incorrect reporting of the vote that took place.


i’m pleasantly surprised to see the GC taking the time to answer these pertinent questions so thoroughly, leading up to AC2018…while it’s sad that it has to do this, it’s good that it did…i think this statement will reassure many adventists that they can have confidence in their GC leaders…

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Sadly, time was not set aside for adequate discussion of this issue. Why did the G.C. not allow two days for this important business, at least?

The rationale for this TOSC research was exactly and publicly attributed to get international input from all 13 divisions. Funding was provided for the INTERNATIONAL reports and meetings.

Has the GC anti-WO leadership gone directly to their “enemies” and directly spoken to them? Is there a report about this? Where?

This is a curious statement. How can the leadership demand compliance with THEIR personal views of a policy issue and force members to recant the Priesthood of ALL Believers?

Thousands have been doing just this. It happened this weekend at the Constituency meeting in SECC. Prayer, study, and following the nudgings of the Holy Spirit. It’s happening all over the world. Unions, conferences, churches, individuals have spoken in documents, interviews, books, and in meetings after prayers for the Holy Spirit. Regardless, it seems the leadership ignores their injunctions.

Sadly, the General Conference ADCOM does not include the Priesthood of All Believers, Gifts of the Holy Spirit anywhere in their writings insisting that everyone join their view. By insisting on ignoring the Gifts of the Spirit upon women, the leadership is actually pressing against unity in the Spirit. This is troubling and puzzling.


Translation: “No, we are not authoritarian.” “No, we don’t exercise kingly power.” “We distributed the TOSC report, although we disregarded its findings.” “Of course we are not suppressing freedom of conscience.” “Unity is so important that we’ll enforce uniformity.”
“Yes, we are doing everything right. Trust us!”


this certainly represents a significant impasse, but it may just be that we are looking at it incorrectly…if san antonio can be shown to have been inadvertently illegitimate - that ordination questions really do belong to unions, and not the GC - perhaps it can be withdrawn, and we can start all over…

i really hope someone at AC2018 can insist on discussing the division of powers principle in our church without getting side-tracked…if i were a delegate, this is the question i’d be focused on…there isn’t a compliance problem, at least on WO, if san antonio can be shown to have been inadvertently illegitimate…

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With due respect, it would be advisable to read up some more on what the GC leadership has done to address the issues relative to your questions. Do so, it’ll save you time. And energy.

The brief article responds fairly and squarely to the misguided criticisms by George Knight and others here and elsewhere. David Larson has more than adequately done that also, here. It will go a long way to help assuage some lingering and valid concerns, straighten out the inaccurate characterizations and settle some of the fear-mongering we’ve come to expect from Spectrumites.
Whatever the council does, do something it must.

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When about to be caught red-handedly, redirect the attention to a common enemy. This is vintage infantile defense mechanism frequently seen in preschool playgrounds and is sadly reflective of our church leaders mental frame. “Unity by Redirection and Projection” should be the theme of AC2018.

Why can’t our GC officers leave the RCC alone and settle our problems among ourselves. No need to triangulate. This is just so pathetic. The point is the behavior, not the institution.


With all due respect, @BePositive, I have carefully followed every article, detail, interview, publication, study and book on this topic since Utrecht.

Perhaps you have answers to the questions??


Notice, it says “regions of the world” instead of Division Offices.
Is this a twist on words to confuse the readers of what REALLY was voted SA2015?
NOTICE they fail to report that Unions STILL have the Authority to have whoever
[men or women] THEY want as pastors.
So this STILL BY OMMISSION perpetuates the assumption that UNIONS are being
uncooperative, going their own way in DEFIANCE to what was voted SA2015.
NOTICE – They are calling for President Roberts to resign from her voted in Office
as President.
NOTICE-- They are asking that NOBODY call Leaders to account for their actions.
If one does then it is considered an ATTACK on the PERSONHOOD of the person
and NOT just the actions exhibited.
WHAT ABOUT THIS QUESTION AND ITS ANSWERS-- If compliance is so difficult to
achieve and this issue is so divisive, wouldn’t it be better to just forget about this and
focus on mission [mission statement].


Jeremy –
NO WAY will they say that the SA2015 vote was illegitimate. That is WHY it was worded the
way it was. To CONFUSE the Delegates for whom English was NOT their first language.
This is why threats of “dire consequences” were made.
This is why threats of making certain Unions and Conferences into “Missions”.


i didn’t say they should say san antonio was illegitimate…i said they should say, or find, that san antonio was inadvertently illegitimate…

if we are interested in resolving this impasse, we need to find a way to save face for all concerned…

Jeremy –
Nobody at the Very Top will agree to that.
They got the vote they wanted and have been making the most of it.
Even very intelligent persons who comment here on Spectrum are
still confused by the wording of the motion, and what the vote meant.

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I appreciated Dr Jon Paulien’s moderating tone in his LLUC Sabbath School presentation. His ability to explain the GC’s frame of mind in dealing with compliance issues is something I really respect.

One point of Paulien’s that really resonated with me is that the 2015 SAN Antonio vote on Ordination was wrong headed because neither response gave any hope of resolving the impasse.

The quickest solution to this impasse may indeed be for the GC to think of a way to credientialize our pastoral leaders without maintaining separate gender tracks, much as Norway appears to have done.

The real question that must be uppermost in the minds of the GC Executive Committee should be - Does the proposed compliance policy add to consensus decision making and build trust among church leadership? I believe the answer is still ‘NO’.

However we must acknowledge the attempt to build unity, though it must be said that unity will never be produced by use of sticks.

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well, they’ve also got a very big headache…and now it looks like the compliance review committees may be in doubt…

i think there have to be at least some leaders at the very top who would love to start all over…

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Raj, I think you pretty much summed up the conclusion drawn. The overall tone of the response appeared to be over simplified and misdirects the readers. As a result of this response there is as you put it ‘Yep everything is fine here’ and is really in the end dishonest on the part of the GC.


This is a Very Well Crafted document, and the WORDING of it took a lot of time
and thought by a number of persons to get it “just right”.
How something is worded, which words are used, are Very Important in a
document such as this.

I was a nursing home administrator in TN for over 20 years, dealing with State
surveyors and wording on compliant-not compliant forms.
I would put this document in the same status of those.
It is all in the WORDING as how to interpret.
It was all in the WORDING by me as how I responded, and I became very GOOD
at it. Perhaps this is WHY I am SUSPICIOUS of this document from the Adventist
News Network.

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In a Trumpian world it’s called “doubling down.” That’s what this is. The only response can be “voting down.”


The TOSC has three types of Position Summaries and corresponding Way Forwards.

I hadn’t read through the whole document and after doing so the writers were being very honest in their approach.

If you haven’t had a chance to read through it I would strongly advise that you do. At least look at the Summaries first and then the subsequent analysis for each position to get the main points.