SBC To Vote on the Removal of Churches with Female Pastors

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The Southern Baptist Convention is ready to make their next move of removing female pastors for good.

The SBC’s annual meeting will commence next Tuesday and Wednesday, June 11-12. During this meeting, they will vote on if they want to amend the denomination’s constitution to remove churches with female pastors.

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As the SBC has continued to tighten their rules and regulations on the role of women in the church, the final decision with this ongoing debate has been coming for a while.

The Associated Press reported that this vote will not just affect women in the top leadership positions as the SBC tries to double-down on their current doctrinal statement which states that pastoral jobs are “limited to men as qualified by Scripture.”

On the SBC’s site, they state that while women were not asked to step away from ministry leadership during last year’s meeting, “Southern Baptists did take steps to affirm their belief that the office of pastor is reserved for qualified men.”

The amending of the SBC constitution is a two-year-process that requires another two-thirds majority vote at this year’s annual meeting. If the amendment is approved, it will add for Article III to read “Affirms, appoints, or employs only men as any kind of pastor or elder.”

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The sixth section of the SBC’s Baptism and Faith Message currently makes their positioning on women clear: “While both men and women are gifted for service in the church, the office of pastor is limited to men as qualified by Scripture.”

This vote is to come after last year’s decision of the Southern Baptist Convention to uphold the ousting of Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church. The megachurch was found not to be in cooperation of the SBC’s faith statement after appointing and allowing Saddleback’s new lead pastor’s wife, Stacie Wood, take on the role of “teaching pastor.”

Warren appealed the decision at last year’s annual meeting, but the SBC made the separation final.

Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, said of Saddleback, “It’s not just a matter of church polity; it’s not just a matter of hermeneutics…It’s a matter of biblical commitment to the Scripture that unequivocally we believe limits the office of pastor to men.”

If the amendment is passed, it is predicted to take years for the SBC to remove all churches with female pastors that are currently part of the denomination.

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Abby Trivett is content development editor for Charisma Media.

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