GS 1989 art 16

GS 1989 ARTICLE 16Committee III presents:

Agenda Items VIII, E, 1, 2


  • 1. Letter from the Church at Burlington-East in connection with Acts General Synod Burlington-West 1986, Art. 163
  • 2. Letter from the Church at Lynden, WA, re same.


  • 1. The Church at Burlington-East proposes “that it will be made part of the rules for meetings of our general synods that in matters which touch the subjects which are taught by them the professors could be invited to be present in an advisory capacity and that future general synods will avail themselves of their advice whenever this would be wise and feasible”.
  • 2. The Church at Lynden, WA, petitions General Synod:
    • i. to invite the professors as advisors to General Synod, and to request their advice on those subjects which fall in the disciplines which they are appointed to teach at the College, and furthermore,
    • ii. to appoint a committee to investigate how we as federation of churches can best benefit from the presence of the professors at synods. Perhaps this could be done in light of the report which will be presented to the next Synod of our sister churches in the Netherlands by a similar committee appointed by General Synod of Spakenburg-Noord 1987.


  • 1. In the Guidelines for Synod (Acts of Synod 1983, Art. 45) Art III, A, 9 which reads, “If anyone has been requested to advise Synod on any matter, he shall address Synod on this point only when asked to do so by the chair” it is
  • implied that the Advisory Committee can request and receive advisors. These advisors may also be present at plenary session and speak only when asked to do so by the chair.
  • 2. In Art 48 of Acts of Synod 1986, Synod gave advisory committees permission to take up contact with members of standing committees, “if it is deemed prof- itable in the preparation of an advisory report”.
  • 3. We should not conclude from Art. 163 of Acts of Synod 1986 that a professor may never be present during plenary session to give advice when called upon to do so.
  • 4. Even though our Dutch sister churches may have made more use of the pro- fessors of theology at general synods, it has not been proven that professors are always required at synods and that therefore we need additions to the “Guidelines for Synod”.


Not to make any changes in the “Guidelines for Synod” because the present “Guidelines for Synod” adopted in 1983 do not prevent professors from giving advice to advisory committees or plenary sessions when requested to do so.


The following motion to amend the Committee proposal is made and duly seconded:

Article 163 of Acts Synod 1986 does not state or imply that professors were not called upon for advice by the advisory committee; to add this as consideration “4” and make the present consideration “4” into “5.”


The Committee’s proposal is