University & Seminary Respond to GC Vote on Women’s Ordination

On Wednesday, July 8, in San Antonio, Texas, delegates to the 60th General Conference Session of Seventh-day Adventists voted 1,381–977 against allowing regional accommodation for world divisions to "make provision for the ordination of women to the gospel ministry."

Andrews University is home to the theological seminary of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Many of the 3,000 ordained ministers across the North American Division, and an even greater number abroad, have taken classes and/or received a degree from the seminary.

Jiři Moskala, seminary dean, says, "Those of us in the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary respect yesterday's decision by the world Seventh-day Adventist Church. While it wasn't the outcome many in the church had hoped for, the seminary will continue to be an open, warm and friendly place for all women called by God to be prepared for pastoral ministry or chaplaincy. I believe that the formal response of the North American Division to this vote that ‘we will continue to follow General Conference policy by commissioning women pastors’ affirms that there will indeed be a place in our Church where female students will be welcomed to the pastoral ministry. I believe the ministry of these committed and seminary educated women is truly needed in our church and those women who are our graduates already have played and will continue to play a vital role in fulfilling the mission of the church in proclaiming the everlasting Gospel to the world.”

Niels-Erik Andreasen, president of Andrews University, says, "Although the delegates to the General Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist world church declined to approve the ordination of women, Andrews University continues its support of women in ministry and the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary will continue to admit and educate women students who are called to ministry. There is strong evidence that women make important and needed contributions to the ministry of the church in many parts of the world. Our prayers are with the world church as we all move forward following this General Conference Session.”