ARTICLE 61: Admission to the Lord’s Supper

The consistory shall admit to the Lord’s supper only those who have made public profession of the Reformed faith and lead a godly life.

Members of sister-churches shall be admitted on the ground of a good attestation concerning their doctrine and conduct.

Texts of Implementation
Texts of Application
Texts of Commentary
Attestations - Testimonies

GS 2013 – Article 149

3. Considerations:

3.3.      Some letters deal with major items and require input and direction from Synod, including the following:

Article 43 – Admission to the Lord’s Supper

A number of churches wrote about the current wording of this article, which refers to the consistory admitting “visitors who profess the Reformed faith provided that it secures from them a satisfactory testimony in either written or verbal form about their doctrine, life and church membership.” There continues to be concern that an individual guest may give a verbal testimony about his own doctrine, life and church membership, while the greater responsibility to provide such a testimony should rest with the visitor’s consistory. However, as Synod Burlington 2010 noted, “The elders of the local church are directly responsible for the doctrine and life of their members. Visitors, on the other hand, constitute ‘exceptions’ and it needs to be understood that ‘exceptions’ are always hard to regulate… The admission of visitors from churches with which we maintain ecclesiastical fellowship is best served by a letter of testimony, but it should be understood that very few churches in North America are familiar with such a practice” (Article 151). Nevertheless, because of the Biblical principle of establishing truth on the basis of two witnesses, the joint committee ought to consider making an addition to the wording of the proposed article to reflect a preference for a written testimony about the member from his consistory.

Supervising Guests (aka Fencing the Table)

GS 2007 – Article 83

3. Considerations

3.2   Synod Chatham correctly notes that a Church Order expresses how churches have agreed to carry out biblical principles in practical church life (Art. 86, 4.5). That the Canadian Reformed Churches have bound themselves to a specific Church Order (and hence a certain practice re supervising guests at the Lord’s table) does not mean that the practices described in this Church Order are the only way any church of God could ever supervise the table.