25 Nov GS 1986 art 44
GS 1986 ARTICLE 44
Continuation Discussion re Rev. C. Olij (See Art. 25, 31, 39)
Committee 2 presents:
– Agenda VIII, H, 12, 13
- 1. The appeal of Rev. J. Mulder, Burlington-West, against Art. 9 of the Acts of the Regional Synod East, March 27, 29, 1985.
- 2. The appeal of Ebenezer Canadian Reformed Church at Burlington-East against Art. 11, consideration 4, of the Acts of Regional Synod East of March 27. 29, 1985.
- 1. Rev. J. Mulder appeals the decision of Regional Synod of March 27, 29, 1985, Acts, Art. 9, re the financial arrangements for Rev. C. Olij and family.
- 2. Regional Synod decided to deny an appeal of Rev. J. Mulder against a decision of Classis Ontario North of January 24, 1985. That classis had judged “that the arrangements made by Classis June 26, 1980, with the approbation of the Deputies of Regional Synod, implies the termination of all financial support for the Rev. C. Olij and family at the end of 1984, except for the obligations which are made in the event that the Rev. C. Olij reaches the age of 65, or in the event of his death” (Art. 8).
- 3. Rev. Mulder complains that the “decision of Classis Ontario North of January 24, 1985. was insufficient and unjustified, being not in harmony with the arrangements made.” Regional Synod used the following consideration to deny this complaint:
- a. that Classis Ontario North did not have to adduce grounds for something which is self-evident, namely, that the arrangement for financial support, using a “gliding scale,” terminates on the date mentioned (December, 1984) and is not self-perpetuating;
- b. that special pension arrangements do not imply that regular support must be given before such pension situations arise;
- c. that you have not shown which possible financial obligations still rest on the church at Orangeville for the support of Rev. C. Olij and his family after the termination of the financial arrangement for the period 1980 – 1984.
- 4. Rev. Mulder “requests that General Synod judges that Regional Synod East 1985 should not have denied my appeal and I further request General Synod to decide that according to the arrangement made by the church at Orangeville, if necessary with the help of sister-churches, should financially support Rev. Olij and family, if his and his family’s needs are not adequately met.” As considerations he gives:
- a. He is a minister of the Word in the midst of the churches.
- b. He has been released of his ministerial service in Orangeville according to Art. 11 of the Church Order without one-sided blame on him.
- c. He retained the title of minister of the Word according to the decision of the churches.
- d. He did not receive a call from one of the churches.
- e. He is unable adequately to meet his needs and those of his family.
- f. He owes his ministerial status to the call once received from the church at Orangeville.
- g. The church at Orangeville is the church who has to initiate financial sup port if Rev. Olij is in need.
- 5. The Regional Synod East of March 27, 29, 1985, in its denial of the complaint of br. and sr. H.J. Endeman gave as its fourth consideration that “Rev. C. Olij is indeed allowed to turn to the deaconry for help, since only the support from Orangeville as per arrangement was terminated.”
- 6. The consistory of Burlington-East objects to this consideration in the first place, “since it is the honour and duty of the churches to provide for the proper support of their ministers.”
- 7. The second objection of Burlington-East is that the statement, “the support from Orangeville as per arrangement was terminated,” is in conflict with the facts, since “the gliding scale was terminated, but not the arrangement itself.”
- 1. The release of Rev. C. Olij as the active minister of the church at Orangeville was done under the previous version of the Church Order, in which there were no stipulations about a period of support in the event a minister is released from his service in the congregation.
- 2. The appellants correctly argue that Rev. C. Olij is still a minister in our churches, retaining the title and honour of a minister of the Word, according to the decision of the churches. He owes his ministerial status to the call which he received from the church at Orangeville.
- 3. Classis Ontario North of June 26, 1980. made financial arrangements for Rev. C. Olij, for the period from April 1, 1980, through 1984, (using a sliding scale) so that he and his family could be supported while he awaited (an)other call(s) or while he sought other employment.
- 4. Regional Synod of March 27, 29, 1985, correctly stated that these financial arrangements (using the sliding scale), with the exception of the arrangements in case Rev. C. Olij either retired or passed away, terminated on Dec., 1984. However, the financial arrangements made in 1980 do not preclude financial support after 1984.
- 5. The church-orderly principle at stake is that a man who receives and retains the office of a minister should receive the honour and support worthy of the office (compare the present Church Order, Art. 11, in which support ceases only when and if a minister is released from his ministerial status).
- 6. Though Regional Synod of March 27, 29, 1985, was correct in stating that the financial arrangements, with the exception of the arrangements for a pension and in case of death, terminated Dec., 1984, it must be remembered that these financial arrangements were taken in the expectation that Rev. C. Olij would either receive a call or find another vocation. Unfortunately, this expectation has not materialized. In this present situation new measures therefore should be made, since the Church Order makes clear that a minister should receive the honour and support worthy of his office.
- 7. The consistory at Burlington-East correctly states that “it is the honour and duty of the churches to provide for the proper support of their ministers” and that a minister should therefore not be directed to the deaconry for support.
General Synod judges:
- On the basis of these considerations that it is proper that financial support from the church at Orangeville with the help of sister-churches in the classical resort of Ontario North be given for Rev. C. Olij and his family in case his needs are not adequately met.
General Synod decides:
- To send this decision to the Rev. J. Mulder, the consistory of the Burlington East, the Church at Orangeville, Rev. C. Olij, and the convening church of the next Classis Ontario North, and the convening church of the next Regional Synod East.
- The chair rules that, according to Art. 32, Church Order. the Rev. J. Mulder, being one of the appellants, cannot take part in the vote.
The recommendations are ADOPTED.