The Acts are now current up to Day 7. Since the librarian at the Theological College normally takes care of updating the website, and since the seminary is closed over the (long) weekend, I wouldn’t expect any more updates until Tuesday. Incidentally, it appears that the Synod will be continuing its work on Monday (Victoria Day here in Canada).
A highlights from this past Tuesday (May 18):
- We will continue to be a member of NAPARC (article 54). However, our Committee for Contact with Churches in North America (CCCNA) will investigate the status and implications of the Comity Agreement as well as the NAPARC agreement on membership transfers
Highlights from Wednesday May 19:
- The appeals regarding Lord’s Supper to shut-ins were denied (article 58). This means that local churches may continue (I’m not even aware of any church that has done it) administering the Lord’s Supper to shut-ins, provided that it is done in the context of a regular public worship service.
- The Committee for Relations with Churches Abroad had proposed a restructuring of their committee and the CCCNA, along with some reconfiguration of how we deal with sister churches (articles 60 and 61). These proposals were rejected by the Synod.
- The Kerwood church had appealed the decision of Synod Smithers to appoint the Cornerstone church to study the matter of Women’s Voting. They argued that Cornerstone should have presented its overture to classis and regional synod before bringing it to General Synod. Moreover, they argued that it was improper for Synod to appoint Cornerstone as the committee when it had asked for the study. Synod Burlington wrestled with the first point since different practices have been allowed by different synods. In the future, churches will have to submit proposals to all the churches six months ahead of Synod, but are not require to run them through classis and regional synod. With regards to the second point, the Synod said that may not have been wise, but Kerwood had not proven that it was unlawful.
- A decision was made with regards to the Committee for Church Unity, the committee that deals with our unity discussions with the URCNA. I’ll just quote the decision here in full:
That Synod decide:
4.1 To reappoint Coordinators for Ecclesiastical Unity.
4.2 To continue Ecclesiastical Fellowship with the URCNA under the adopted rules.
4.3 To declare that as Canadian Reformed Churches we are still committed to the goal of federative unity between our churches and to ask the URCNA whether they are still committed to this goal (see attached letter).
4.4 To request Synod London of the URCNA to clarify the status of the Nine Points of Schererville as a whole and to give a further explanation of Point 6 in particular;
4.5 To be more diligent in maintaining Rule 3 of Ecclesiastical Fellowship dealing with relations with third parties.
4.6 To declare that Considerations 3.3 and 3.5 answer the concerns of the Church at Attercliffe, that Consideration 3.6 answers the concerns of the Church at Ancaster and that Consideration 3.7 addresses the concerns of the Church at Winnipeg (Redeemer).
4.7 To receive the answer of the URCNA to our questions about the Framework Hypothesis, and to include it among the appendices of these Acts.
To understand some of the details there, you’ll have to look at the Acts for yourself.
- Finally, the Synod also decided that reports are public documents and should be made available electronically to all members of the Canadian Reformed Churches before Synod.
Later that evening, the URCNA delegates answered the questions sent in from some of the churches as well questions from the floor. My understanding is that this went well. An audio recording of this session was made and should be made publicly available soon.