This is the first in a series of posts on the theme “Alternatives to Division.” When facing discord and division in your church, what are some of the alternatives to simply dividing?
The first case study that I wanted to examine was that of the role of women as elders in the Christian and Missionary Alliance in Canada. This is an issue that was one of the key concerns of the denomination for 1982-2000, and one on which little agreement could be found.
The Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA) in Canada became independent from the U.S. body in 1981. While it adopted many of the US policies as its own, it was now a separate entity and responsible for making its own policies and decisions. One of the structures that was changed was moving from a two board system in the local church to a single elders board. Under the two board system, women often served on the Executive board, but not the Elders’ board. So under the single board system women were restricted from serving in leadership positions. Read the rest of this entry »