In the CRC Church Order, Article 4 seems to make clear that the calling of Elders and Deacons is entirely the responsibility of the Council and clearly spells the process out. Article 35a seems to give a little wiggle room where the Consistory can say it determines the qualities of who is eligible because 35a states the Council "Approves" the nominations as one of the example of its tasks. Throughout the Church order, it takes great pains to describe the tasks of each of the 3 offices and what they do. It goes to the extreme in 35b & c and states in those articles (paraphrased here,) that the tasks belong to each office distinctively. I do not see anything that grants this task to anyone other than the Council.
My Question: Which office discusses and decides on the eligibility of potential Elders and Deacons? Let’s cast a wide net on the question, Women in office? Unmarried Deacons? Elders that partake in Alcohol? (The first ones that come to mind that seem to make some people squirm.) All potentially gray areas depending on how you apply biblical teachings. Where does this get weeded out and decided. Why?
Out of respect for Henry DeMoore’s book, if he’s already answered this there, let me know and I will run out and buy it sooner that I planned… (Smile…)
Thank you in advance for your input!