The Review and Herald
Battle Creek, Michigan, December 20, 1881
U. Smith, Resident Editor
J. N. Andrews, Associate Editor
General Conference Business Proceedings
FIFTH MEETING, DEC. 5, 10 A.M.Prayer by Eld. Loughborough. Minutes of last meeting read and approved.
Resolved, That females possessing the necessary qualifications to fill that position, may,
with perfect propriety, be set apart by ordination to the work of the Christian ministry.
This was discussed by J. O. Corliss, A. C. Bourdeau, E. R. Jones, D. H.
Lamson, W. H. Littlejohn, A. S. Hutchins, D. M. Canright, and J. N.
Loughborough, and referred to the General Conference Committee.1
Fifty-fifth General Conference Session
Ordination of women to the gospel ministry not approved
Voted, to accept the following report and
recommendations of the Role of Women Commission as recommended by the 1989
Annual Council: . . .
1. While the commission does not have a consensus as to
whether or not the Scriptures and the writings of Ellen G. White explicitly
advocate or deny the ordination of women to pastoral ministry, it concludes
unanimously that these sources affirm a significant, wide-ranging, and
continuing ministry for women, which is being expressed and will be evidenced in
the varied and expanding gifts according to the infilling of the Holy Spirit.
2. Further, in view of the widespread lack of support for the
ordination of women to the gospel ministry in the world church and in view of
the possible risk of disunity, dissension, and diversion from the mission of the
church, we do not approve ordination of women to the gospel
Review, July 13, 1990, p. 15.
Performing marriages allowed to certain licensed and
commissioned ministers in approving divisions only
Voted, to amend Church Manual, page 59, The
Marriage Ceremony, to read as follows:
The Marriage Ceremony.In the marriage ceremony the charge,
vows, and declaration of marriage are given only by an ordained minister except
in those areas where division committees have taken action to approve that
selected licensed or commissioned ministers who have been ordained as local
elders may perform the marriage ceremony.Adventist Review, July 19,
1990, p. 10.
1 The General
Conference Committee has never reported back concerning this resolution.
2 The vote was 1,173 supporting the action with 377 against.
3 The 1989 Annual Council action re women ministers' baptizing
stands unchanged. See Chapter 11.