Letters to the Editor

July 21, 2015

Mere Human Reasoning

Two articles in the June issue of the Gleaner caught my attention ["Proving Ourselves Wrong" and "Extralogical Enlightenment"]. ... Both seemed rather long on human reasoning and short on scriptural certitude, leaving them both wanting in this regard. It is God's Word alone, rather than human reasonings, that has authoritative power (John 17:17). Isn't the following warning apropos to all of us who exegete the Word? "... Others who have an active imagination, seize upon the figures and symbols of Holy Writ, interpret them to suit their fancy, with little regard to the testimony of Scripture as its own interpreter, and then they present their vagaries as the teachings of the Bible" (The Great Controversy, p. 521).

Don Eckenroth, Hayden, Idaho

At First Glance

Excellent "Best" and "Learning the Language" [Let's Talk by Steve Vistaunet and Perspective by Seth Pierce, July 2015]. I go to these two writers first — always right on!

Marilyn Jorgensen, Spokane, Wash.

Ordination Response

[Regarding the recent General Conference Session vote on ordination] There is apparently significant confusion about the consequences of the failed motion. The truth is there are no consequences. The consequences of a failed motion are the same as if the motion had never existed. Nothing has changed. Nothing is permitted, and nothing is prohibited. For there to be any consequences or change, a motion needs to pass. This is just parliamentary procedure. … All church policy and doctrinal issues remain as they were.

Wilmer Radke, Bremerton, Wash.

Stand in Solidarity

The vote in San Antonio to not ordain female minsters caused me to find my own ordination certificate and recall the day in 1976 when I was ordained with two others at the Montana Camp Meeting. My ordination prayer was given by H.M.S. Richards Sr., a family friend with whom I often walked to work in the early morning hours as a teenager in Glendale, Calif. Because I was serving on the Montana Conference and North Pacific Union Conference executive committees I was a delegate to the GC Session in Indianapolis in 1990. I was disappointed by that vote regarding who may be ordained, but felt that "a little more time" would resolve concerns. I am retired now, and my heart is broken for my church by the apparent need to retain male dominance and entitlement. I fear this will never change in my lifetime. A female commissioned minister can function in all ways that I could as a male ordained minister (with one minor and infrequent exception). So, it seems, the only reason not to ordain is based on gender, not on qualifications, function or ability. With that in mind, I wonder what would happen if those male ordained ministers at ALL levels of the church organization who are concerned about equality would turn in their ministerial credentials and request commissioned credentials. By doing this we would stand in solidarity, equality and unity with our female commissioned ministerial colleagues. Yes, I am aware of the consequences of such a suggestion at the conference/union/division/GC levels, but I believe this suggestion still has merit and may help move the church into this century regarding the role of women in ministry in the church.

Verlyn Retzer, Greenacres, Wash.