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Calif AB appoints woman as D. O: Violation or progress?
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Post "Regional Overseers" Pastor Nations
Randy Johnson wrote:
In practical terms, what do District Overseers actually do?


California now has three "Regional Overseers", in addition to the twenty or so District Overseers.
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1/10/11 12:09 pm


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Post Bro Bob
I have addressed this issue as much as anyone, and I am still being misunderstood.

1) My opinion does not matter in the least. But this is my opinion: Our entire system of government in the church is man-made in his best efforts to be both practical and obedient to scripture. I don't think it is the best system. I have no problem with women being DOs, ABs or PBs. At my level of interaction with these people who hold these man-made positions, reasoning with a mature Godly woman would doubtless present to me a more caring and careful hearer of my concerns. Human behavior proves that from a stereotypical perspective, man on man is more likely to become a contest.

2) The Bible case. The exact same men who created this system, used specific Bible references to support their creation. These references paint a very clear picture of exactly whom is to be considered for certain work. God created the family, and we know what that is. We also know how man stretches it into the unrecognizable. God through his disciples extended the creation of the church to be family-like, and the next larger societal group for believers. In fact, almost everyone reading this would admit, they are closer to their spiritual family than their earthly one. Is it any wonder then, that men who lead their families in such a fashion as to be an example to the church, should be the ones chosen to lead the church itself?

Does that mean the widow is worthless? God forbid. Does it mean the orphan has no place at the table? Heaven help us. But is a household led by a single woman to be the example of God's perfect will? The woman at the well went and told the good news, come and see a man... But Christ did not extend the offer to her that he did to the rich young ruler.

Now, I have a hard time making myself clear. And if those reading this insist, they can reject my meaning intentionally and no words from me will change their mind. But when I say that those who went before us used scripture, and those who bring change reject it, what I am talking about is the actual scripture references listed along with the section, article, and paragraph as foundational for what these men stated as official CoG position.

We decided to delete one word: 'MALE', in one place in the minutes. And we have that authority.

What we cannot edit, is the scripture that says "husband of one wife" or "rules his house well", or "his children are obedient and not unruly". Since we don't have authority to edit scripture, then I am assuming that one of the things the mystery editors of the MINUTES will do is just cease to list them.

3) What ALWAYS matters. There's a real good chance that you are smarter than me. I'm used to it. And I can understand the frustration of dealing with the dense, and not being able to convince them that you know a better way. But if you hold a position in the Church of God from member to presiding bishop you have made a vow to submit to the authority on these issues as laid out by the General Assembly. It is at this point where you may be Raymond Culpepper, but your opinion is as worthless as mine.

You may well have the guts to do a thing and dare anyone to call you on it. You may have the cover of friends in high places. (That is how one gets an appointment in the first place.) You may BE a person in a high place, and acting with "whatever authority you say you have" may be how you have done it from your first day as pastor. Within the last month a pastor / poster here has boasted to me of exactly this, "Who is going to stop me? A LAYMAN?" You may simply be arrogant and proud.

But keeping a covenant ALWAYS matters or we might as well close the doors and go back to having church in our homes.

BB

ps reply to bowtat's excellent comments
Quote:

I would pray that being from the North, South East or West, being young or old, or born with ovaries, black, white or whatever would stop being a reason for disqualification for respect on this board or in our Church. Sure I laughed at the Soddy Daisy guy at the GA, but then I realized he is a "ordained Bishop" as well.


You do understand that as a layman, I am never in a position where every female member in my church is not my equal, right? You also understand that I am not complaining about that one bit? That I see no scriptural inequity with this? Of course you understand this.

But what so many pastors, and apparently a majority of those who hold appointed or elected positions don't understand, is that when my sister and I are standing shoulder to shoulder in a deciding vote, whether in my church or on the final day of the assembly, we are the highest governing body, and when you get back to your parsonage, or the state office, or Cleveland Tn, you are duty and honor bound to conduct yourself in complete harmony with what we have determined. Rejecting that outright is not permissible. Surrendering your credentials is.
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1/10/11 12:28 pm


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Post I am a D. O. Dan Eason
I am a District Overseer. The duties and role of this office depend on the will of the A. B. If the A. B. is a delegator, a D. O. can do a lot.
"The district provides a bridge for communication and service between the local church and the state office. The district overseer is the liason of the state overseer to the local churches." (Church of God District Overseer's Manual.)
If there is no Bishop on that district, and Bro. Darnell had only L. O. to work with, there is no prohibition against appointing a female D.O.
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1/10/11 1:52 pm


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Post No Bishop on the District.... Phil Akin
There are plenty.. Friendly Face
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1/10/11 2:29 pm


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Post NPS39
And, there are no district churches. There are churches whose pastors are district overseers, churches that have always held that distinction, but the position goes to the person...not the house! Acts Enthusiast
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1/10/11 2:44 pm


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Post Marie Auvenshine
In response to the question, I do believe that it is time for this to happen.
However, when I came into the ranks of ordained minister I knew that as a woman I would not be able to serve in any of the ranks of DO, SO, OB, PB, or serve on any of the boards.

What I do think should be allowed however, is that any woman serving as Lead Pastor of a church should be allowed to lead her own Pastor's Council meetings and affairs of the church. I also feel that she should be allowed to cast her vote and therefore have a voice in the affairs of the church and leadership of the church. IMHO.
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1/11/11 10:20 am


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Post Bro Bob
Even if you don't use strict Robert's Rules of Order, (hard thing to do) it is generally advised that whoever chairs a meeting not have a vote except to break a tie, nor speak for or against a thing. Bro Culpepper did an excellent job exampling this in Orlando. I see no reason a female pastor could not function in the role of moderator of a properly run council meeting.

The chair does set and keep the group to the agenda, which is far more influential than anything else. Under the MINUTES, no official meeting nor decision can even happen unless the chair (pastor) calls that meeting.

From my experience I can report that I don't recall any votes that were not unanimous until the rules changed, and men, previously unqualified, became part of the council. Looking back now, it is amazingly clear.

As long as all met the strictest definition of "husband of one wife" and "not a novice" things went very smooth, and I have never been part of a Church that was growing, healing and blessing more than that one was.

Then we came to the Jordan river and tough decisions had to be made...
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1/11/11 10:48 am


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Post Technical Questions Bowtat
Yesterday I was speaking with a friend who's D.O. was coming to install a new pastor at his church for the AB who was stuck in Cleveland, due to snow, and has had to cancel all the meetings set up for this week.

In that case the DO is a "stand in" AB. I know this is a technical question, but in order to be a AB you have to be a Bishop would that not disqualify all none Bishops from doing this one role, installing a pastor?


To my friend Bro Bob
I wonder if unanimous thinking is a good thing? With out discord we would all still be Catholic. With people among us we don't like or are unlike we sometimes change the course of our own thinking, or become more firm in our belief. Just a thought.
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1/11/11 11:05 am


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Post Bro Bob
The thinking certainly wasn't unanimous. The discussions were quite active. Remember, I was in the room. Can you imagine there not being more than one view presented? Smile

But by the time we were ready to vote, we had reasoned the thing out, and come to a conclusion. I wouldn't even use the word compromise. I would say, we were in one accord, even if we didn't begin that way.

Personal ego was just not part of it. Each man honestly wanted to do right for the body, and for the kingdom. I wasn't smart enough to realize at the time just how special that entire situation was.

Later, positions were stated, and no amount of reasoning would change minds, and the votes reflected it. Eventually, some would contact me to find out what their options were, and I would tell them, but they would ignore my advice to think further ahead to how it would end up.

I tried to be something of a peacemaker, and I failed. Never more than when I tried to serve both my church and the State Overseer.

Those brethren are gone. And so is that Overseer, in what was a record short tenure for the position in my lifetime.

It made me feel really good bowtat, when you called me friend. Thank you for that.

BB
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1/11/11 11:29 am


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Post Chris Stiles
Bro Bob wrote:

This is no gray area. It is as plain as it can possibly be. The younger men are the ones pushing this issue and they are doing it without any new revelation or exposure from scripture, rather they are doing it by eliminating previous scripture reference.


Bro. Bob, I must say, I have met Tom Sterbens and he is definitely not a YOUNGER man! (Love you Tom). Laughing Laughing Laughing
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1/11/11 1:04 pm


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Post Sue Webb archie
I have known Dr. Webb for many years and was privileged to serve with her on the Evangelism Board where she brought fresh insight leadership and wisdom especially in the area of our retired ministers and widows. Dr Webb is educated and yet very hands on and practical in her ministry. She and Jim are farmers in Southern Cal and I enjoy their kiwi.
Steve Darnell was one of my students in the 80's and is as gutsy as an AB as he was in college and is taking a huge political risk to appoint a female DO just as he did to entertain setting up 3 RO's Northern, Central and Southern. I guess my question might be, did Steve recommend this or did Dan Moore? Any Californians want to chime in? I am not against female leadership and I love the Webbs and have great confidence in them and suport this decision but I would like to know what the thinking process was. I look forward to this discussion. Oh, and Tom I consider you young but experienced.
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1/12/11 2:46 pm


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Post Just a few words about Dr. Webb Dean Steenburgh
Dr. Sue Webb is a gracious woman of God who is highly capable of leading all the ministers on her district. She & Jim have had one of the best food ministries in the whole state & they have huge support from other local farmers near Santa Paula. She pastors a church that is bigger than most CoG churches when you consider that the average church is less than 80 in attendance.

Dr. Webb has been instrumental in developing a great connection between the retired ministers & widows of ministers in this state. She has served with great respect on various boards & committees with her many years of pastoral experience.

She is a fine example of what a leader should be and those of us who have had the opportunity to work with her feel confident, not threatened by her knowledge & skill as it relates to people in need.
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1/12/11 4:04 pm


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Post As I see it Omega
As I see it, it has nothing to do with the Webb's. They may be great people. But it has to do with violating the Church of God Minutes. What would happen if one of you Church of God Ministers violated the minutes?
And whether you guys think it's a good idea or not, isn't this a slap in the face of the Assembly?
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1/12/11 4:27 pm


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Post Omega
Tom Sterbens wrote:
Omega wrote:
As I see it, it has nothing to do with the Webb's. They may be great people. But it has to do with violating the Church of God minutes. What would happen if one of you Church of God Ministers violated the minutes?
And wether you guys think it's a good idea or not, isn't this a slap in the face of the Assembly?

Like ignoring the mandate of financial accountability of TOT fund and subordinating the standards of financial accountability in the COG Minutes to the standards of another organization like the Evangelical Council on Financial Accountability?

So far nothing........


So COG officials can bypass assembly mandates? I thought the Assembly was the ruling body of the Church of God? What good does it accomplish to come together every two years if the will of the assembly is ignored? Rolling Eyes
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1/12/11 7:47 pm


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Post Bro Bob
This thing is quacking like a duck, and waddling all over the place. Golf Cart Mafia Underboss
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1/12/11 8:37 pm


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Post In order to answer the thread question Dean Steenburgh
It is Progress!

I don't know of a single minister (well, maybe 1) in the state who has a problem with Dr. Webb serving as the D.O. but I know a bunch of guys outside of California who have a problem with it & I'm glad we live in our respective geographies.

I look forward to the day when women will serve in much higher offices as respected leaders!

I applaud A.B. Darnell's choice, he is a forward thinking leader!



.
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1/13/11 6:06 pm


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Post Gerald Abreu
IMO, this sets a terrible precedent.
I'm not surprised but a little saddened.
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1/13/11 6:25 pm


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Post Bro Bob
Since you are certain to know, Dean, would you inform us as to how many churches are on that district, and if any of them are pastored by Ordained Bishops?

If you are not free to answer that, I understand.
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1/13/11 6:41 pm


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Post Re: In order to answer the thread question Gerald Abreu
Dean Steenburgh wrote:
It is Progress!

I don't know of a single minister (well, maybe 1) in the state who has a problem with Dr. Webb serving as the D.O. but I know a bunch of guys outside of California who have a problem with it & I'm glad we live in our respective geographies.

I look forward to the day when women will serve in much higher offices as respected leaders!

I applaud A.B. Darnell's choice, he is a forward thinking leader!



.


I'm a stick in the mud. I disagree with this also. Unless you considered me the lone holdout already Cool
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1/13/11 6:59 pm


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Post Re: In order to answer the thread question Omega
Dean Steenburgh wrote:
It is Progress!

I don't know of a single minister (well, maybe 1) in the state who has a problem with Dr. Webb serving as the D.O. but I know a bunch of guys outside of California who have a problem with it & I'm glad we live in our respective geographies.

I look forward to the day when women will serve in much higher offices as respected leaders!

I applaud A.B. Darnell's choice, he is a forward thinking leader!



.


Progress and forward thinking is great if it is done in an orderly manner. And if it is done legal and within the precepts of our bylaws. But it is not right to do it if it breaks the mandate and will of the General Assembly.

You feel it's ok because it is something you would like to see. But would you like it if the rules were broken for something you didn't believe in ? I don't think so. I think you would cry "foul" real loud.
Since when did it become ok to break our own rules, just because it's something we personally believe is progressive? The question is "What comes next"?
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1/13/11 7:25 pm


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