For me it’s time to say farewell. For you who’ve read any of the posts about Synod 2011 it’s time to give The Network and the Board of Trustees some feedback. Was this blog helpful? Did it give you a broader understanding of what Synod 2011 would be addressing? Should the Board do something similar
George Vander Weit
I was born and raised on the south side of Chicago and have been a member of the CRC since my baptism as an infant. In third grade I expressed a desire to be a minister. I delivered newspapers as young boy, and from 8th grade through seminary worked at a store that sold quality fruits and vegetables (and at other stores during the school year in Grand Rapids) so I could pay my high school, college and seminary tuition.
I was a member of the second class of Trinity Christian College in Chicago and completed my college education at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, MI. When I was in seminary, I worked with a Navajo pastor for ten weeks on my summer field assignment and did a fifteen-month internship in inner city New York (Harlem). I graduated from Calvin Seminary in 1968.
My wife Bonnie and I served four Christian Reformed congregations in our almost-forty years of ministry. Two of them were in racially changing/changed communities. We retired in June 2008 and moved to Rochester, MI, to be close to one of our children. We are members of the Han Bit Korean Christian Reformed Church, where I serve as an elder. Twice a month I preach in our English service for junior high, high school and college age youth. I also serve as the alternate synodical deputy of our classis, Classis Lake Erie. (Synodical rules require the presence of three synodical deputies from three neighboring classes when candidates are examined, pastors are released, etc.)
We have four children and six grandchildren and anticipate the birth of two more grandchildren in May and October.
For years I’ve been interested in the polity of the church and in the way the church conducts business in its assemblies. I’ve served as the secretary (stated clerk) of a couple of our regional groupings (classes) for about thirty years. This position required me to be knowledgeable about our Church Order and our denominational decisions. I’ve been delegated to our national assembly (synod) a number of times and have written a number of proposals (overtures) requesting various actions of classis and synod. I’ve also served on a number of classical and denominational study committees/task forces.
I’ve always been concerned that our women and ethnic minority members be given opportunities to use their gifts in every area of ministry and have written a number of overtures in an attempt to attain that goal.
Over the past forty years I’ve authored a number of articles/letters to the editor that have been published in the Banner, our denominational magazine. Since 2001 I’ve been one of the contributors to the Frequently Asked Questions column of the Banner. For many years I’ve sent a joke each Friday to a group of people, and some of these have been published on the Punch Lines page of the Banner.
While in the ministry, I made sure I was involved in some way in the local community beyond the typical ministerial association. I’ve been a member of a couple service clubs, a board member of a Chamber of Commerce, the chairman of a Charity Ball, a Community Activities director for a city, the first president of a Community Coalition for the prevention of drug and alcohol abuse, one of the founders of a Neighborhood Organization and have served in a number of other capacities. Currently, I’m active in our condominium association, serving as the chair of a committee and assisting with various projects.
Since 1997, when the denomination went to a one-week synod, a number of delegates have observed that there is simply not enough time to discuss the matters under consideration. The eye is always on the clock, and sometimes motions are made to restrict speeches to a certain number of minutes or to restrict discussion to a
In one of my pre-synod blogs I asked, “Does the recommendation of the Board of Trustees about future hires of the CRC’s senior leadership ensure greater diversity or does it set us up for another failure? Now that synod has adopted that recommendation, the same question can be asked.
Ever since the “resignation” of our executive director, lots of questions have been raised. That’s fine. But lots of allegations have also been made. That’s not so fine. We need to remember that BOT members are volunteers, ministers and church members just like the rest of us...That doesn't mean we can't question
Does the word "clear" mean that someone is going to present an undeniable truth that is evident to all, or is it a red flag signaling that a position not unanimously held is being propped up by a high-sounding word? Whenever I hear the word "clear" I instinctively, and sometimes unfairly, reach for my
Unfortunately, denominations have been formed because of debates about the sacraments. As Synod 2011 discusses the sacrament of baptism, both unity and continuing division will be evident.
Synod 2006 adopted a motion “to allow for the admission of all baptized members to the Lord’s Supper on the basis of their full membership in the covenant community” and instructed the Board of Trustees to appoint a task force to, among other things, “bring any appropriate Church Order Articles into conformity
Against the advice of the majority, synod adopted Declaration F. Nineteen years later Synod 2010 declared it was no longer part of our official position on creation and science. An overture to Synod 2011 contends, “the practical effect of that decision was to allow persons within the CRC to adopt evolutionary
Will the new hymnal cooperatively published by our denomination and the Reformed Church in America (RCA) include the Heidelberg Catechism and the rest of our creeds and confessions? Initially, the answer was “yes.” Now Faith Alive Christian Resources is asking Synod 2011 to say “no.”
You ask if a simple majority would be sufficient to depose an elder or in the case of a single nominee.
Yes, the majority, not the minority, should determine these matters....
I was asked to be a guide for Synod 2011. I was discouraged because so few people commented. I was told by the Network people, "Don't be discouraged. A host of people listen in even though only...posted on: Genesis - Again!
Hans, it would be interesting to hear what your council decided and how/if the discussion here influenced its decision. Other people are evaluating the worth of the Network. Perhaps they need to...
John, you say, "Yes George, your example of synodical decisions was quite diversionary and inappropriate."
I hope you realize that this example was raised by Randy who called it a "good...
As I reflected on our discussion of this issue, I wondered if we had drifted from Hans’ initial request that was focused only on the matter of the (s) election of elders and deacons. ...
The fact that simple majorities should be the norm does not neglect unity. A congregation I pastored passed the council's motion to call a second pastor by one vote. The council was concerned...
Requiring anything more than a majority vote for anything institutes rule by minority. Why should the minority rule?
Since 1957 synods have defeated twenty overtures asking that...
All of us agree that a motion projected on a screen is a good thing. That way delegates address the real motion, not what they think the motion is. Apparently, the computers of Synod 2011 were a...
I wasn't thrilled with the way Jerry's "resignation" was announced and almost immediately communicated with the Board of Trustees about that. However, it's a stretch to say that the BOT "lied to...posted on: Our Attitudes Toward Our Leaders
Hey folks, discussion is fine. Disagreement is fine. But making personal attacks on those who hold a different opinion are not so fine. Let me remind you of the comment policy that governs the...posted on: Genesis - Again!