The Amazing Hao Ya Jie Story – Pastor Hao Ya Jie, a woman, is the pastor of the Beiguan Seventh-day Adventist Church in Shenyang, China. It started as a small group of 10 people in her living room in 1985. Now it has a membership of more than 7,000 and is considered the largest Adventist Church in the world. Pastor Hao oversees the day-to-day operation of the church, its lay-training program, a feeding program for the needy, and morning worship that starts each day at 5:00 a.m. with hundreds of members in attendance. The Beiguan church has prompted the growth of more than 120 church-plants. Continue reading
Would you be concerned, maybe shocked, to hear that a woman would be your new pastor? When that happened in 2008 in Chestnut Hill, Pennsylvania, many members were skeptical of the idea. They did not want Tara VinCross to come to their district. But they felt differently when they met her. What made the difference? Continue reading
Fascinating facts on Adventist women as spiritual leaders under the headship of Christ. In an attempt to cut through some of the confusing ideas surrounding the question of whether the Seventh-day Adventist Church should ordain women as pastors, here are some basic ideas and principles that should inform our Biblical understanding of the issue. From our friends at OrdinationFacts.com.
One of the false arguments asserted by the anti-WO activists is a new theology of “male headship.” They claim that it applies to the pastor as head of the church. There are several problems with that new theology. For one, the minister is not the head of the church!
Ellen White made it clear that Jesus Christ is the only head of the church. She also preached that the secret of unity is the equality of believers in Christ. (Ellen White, 1SM 259) She said the Holy Spirit “prepares workers, both men and women, to become pastors.” (Ellen White, Testimonies Vol. 6, p. 322) Our prayer is that the Adventist Church will unite in the equality of believers, including equality in ministry.
For more information on headship, including insightful papers and videos, see our post, Pastor Is Not the Head.
Dr. Angel Rodriguez, a theologian for the General Conference Biblical Research Institute from 1987 to 2011 and its director from 2002 to 2011, explains that the vote in San Antonio is not intended to be a majority vote about whether the Bible allows ordination of women to the ministry. The Adventist Church does not define truth by majority vote. This is not a theological issue. It is simply a question of what is best for the Church. Dr. Rodriguez explains that a Yes vote is a vote for unity and a vote for doing all we can to follow Christ’s command to go and tell the Good News. Continue reading
According to Ellen White, Christ is the only head of the church. “God has never given a hint in His word that He has appointed any man to be the head of the church” (Great Controversy, p 51). “Christ, not the minister, is the head of the church” (Signs of the Times, Jan. 27, 1890). “Christ is the only Head of the church” (Manuscript Releases, 21:274). Continue reading
SDA Seminary professor and theological historian Dr. Martin Hanna summarizes the guiding principles of the Spirit of Prophecy regarding women in ministry. Ellen White wrote a lot of positive things affirming women in ministry. For example, Continue reading
An open letter from Pastor Tom Hughes:
April 5, 2015
Dear Opponents of Women in Ministry:
As a pastor in the Seventh-day Adventist Church for over 35 years I have seen many controversial subjects discussed. However, as our GC president has taken a very negative stance on women’s ministry, and prominent television ministries and publishing houses have done the same, I must publicly and respectfully disagree with them, so I’m writing this open letter to draw attention to Ten Questions that concern me. Continue reading
Here is an interesting point-counterpoint argument about women’s ordination. The debate has been raging for 40 years, since 1975 (or actually since at least 1881). This article was published in the Adventist Review 30 years ago in 1985: “Should Women Be Ordained to the Gospel Ministry?” Read it at http://drc.WhiteEstate.org/files/63.pdf . We think the “Yes” argument on the left side is more scriptural, well-reasoned, and compelling. How about you? Pro-WO, or Anti-WO? You decide.