The Board of Trustees meets three times per year to implement matters assigned by synod and carry out interim functions on behalf of synod (read more). "BOT Highlights" are published following each meeting and distributed to churches by way of the stated clerk of classis. Here's the latest issue.
Grand Rapids, Mich. – The Board of Trustees of the Christian Reformed Church in North America met on September 26 through 28 at the Prince Conference Center on the campus of Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
During this meeting the Board:
- Met with Banner editor Rev. Robert De Moor to discuss the controversy that resulted from several recent articles in The Banner. The Board expressed disappointment with the editorial judgment shown in publishing the articles, but accepted De Moor’s explanation and apology. The Board also appointed a subcommittee to review and recommend measures to strengthen the oversight role of The Banner Editorial Council.
- Received an update from the executive director search committee, reporting that the committee’s work is on track, with the goal of presenting a nominee to the Board in February 2014.
- Adopted a position description and authorized a search process for a new Canadian ministries director. A search team and process will be finalized in the coming weeks, with a goal of presenting a nominee to the Board at its May 2014 meeting.
- Spent time in discussion with a team that is assisting the CRC in a fundamental reframing of its ministry plan. The Strategic Planning and Adaptive Change Team has conducted three scans to gather information about the challenges facing congregations and denominations in a changing culture. The Board’s feedback will inform the team’s continuing work.
- Met Mr. Bing Goei and Mr. Colin Watson, who will be assisting the Executive Director in carrying out the decisions of Synods 2011 and 2013 with regard to increasing diversity in denominational leadership.
- Heard a report from Dr. Michael Le Roy, president of Calvin College, about the significant progress the college is making to reduce its budget deficit, as well as the participatory process underway to develop a new strategic plan. It is hoped to present a final plan to the Calvin College board in January 2014.
- Met with Rev. Norm Thomasma, director of the Office of Pastor-Church Relations (PCR) and endorsed the Credentialing for Church Ministry Staff program developed and presented by that office.
- Acceded to two overtures from Classis Minnkota, permitting the transfer of Second CRC, Kalamazoo, Mich., and Trinity CRC, Sparta, Mich., to Classis Minnkota. The churches two churches had requested permission to transfer from their current classes to join a classis outside of their geographical area that agrees with their position not to seat women delegates at classis or synod meetings.
- Endorsed an agreement between the CRC and the Reformed Church in America to continue their partnership in the ministry of Disability Concerns through 2015, after which there will be a formal review of the program. The partnership agreement was initially signed in 2008.
- Approved several bylaw changes requested by the boards of Calvin College and World Renew Canada.
- Adopted a revised meeting schedule that will see the Board meet in Burlington, Ontario, once every two years instead of annually, in view of the additional costs (approximately $15,000) of holding the Board meetings in Burlington.
- Received a preliminary report on the review of the three Urban Aboriginal Ministries. The final report and recommendations are scheduled to come to the February 2014 meeting of the Board.
- Spent time exploring the pathways to binationality, as described in the Task Force Reviewing Structure and Culture’s report to Synod 2013. It was noted that there are different aspects to diversity and that binationality is an expression of diverse cultures.
- Tabled until February 2014 a request from the Doctrine of Discovery Task Force for additional funding and an extension of its reporting deadline. The Board will set aside 90 minutes at that meeting to hear a presentation from the task force about the Doctrine of Discovery.
- Heard a presentation of findings from the 2012 Denominational Survey and discussed how the Board can use this data in its work.
- Appointed a subcommittee to review the process currently used by synod for appointing synodical study committees.
- Appointed Mrs. Jaci Walcott and Mrs. Janet Greidanus to the Chaplaincy and Care Advisory Committee.
- Appointed Rev. Thyra VanKeeken to the Committee for Contact with the Government as a member from the Classis Lake Superior region.
- Next meetings:
- Feb. 27-28, 2014 – Grand Rapids, Michigan
- May 1-2, 2014 – Grand Rapids, Michigan
- Sept. 25-27, 2014 - simultaneous board meetings in Grand Rapids, Michigan
- Feb. 26-27, 2015 – Burlington, Ontario
- May 7-8, 2015 – Grand Rapids, Michigan
- Sept. 24-26, 2015 – simultaneous board meetings in Grand Rapids, Michigan