Update from Assembly Council following the November 2022 Assembly
Thank you for your ongoing prayerful interest in the matters that continue to challenge us as a movement following our November Assembly.
You may be aware that Assembly Council recently conducted a survey of everyone who voted at the November Assembly, seeking to better understand the reasons people voted as they did. There was a strong response which has been very helpful; thank you to everyone who participated.
Council met on 13 December to continue to work on discerning what might be the most appropriate process to implement the decisions Assembly has made. I encourage you to read the document attached HERE which contains a fuller explanation; but here is a brief summary. You can also click on the video below to hear from me on this.
Given the level of anxiety and concern that is evident across our movement at this time, with the clarity gained from the survey conducted after Assembly, and after prayerful reflection and discussion, Assembly Council is taking a number of steps.
- Motions 10-22 of the Recommendations regarding Affiliation, Baptist Values and Marriage were not voted on at the Assembly. Council considers the best way forward is to lay these ‘on the table’ for the time being and not bring them forward for discussion and voting at this time.
- Rather, the next priority for us together is to seek to discover whether there are more widely acceptable ways to be faithful to the in-principle decisions made at the November AssemblyThese need to be discerned relationally. Council has appointed Tim Dyer, an experienced mediator and trainer of our church consultants, to lead a small team of envoys to conduct discussions with various parties across our movement in the early part of 2023. These discussions will seek to identify potentially fruitful and practical ways of applying the decisions Assembly has already made. Assembly Council will consider these in the leadup to the 2023 Annual Assembly.
- In the light of the above, Assembly Council is not calling an extra assembly in the first part of 2023. The next Assembly will be as scheduled – the Annual Assembly, on Saturday 6 May 2023.
Please read the attached document for a fuller explanation.
Assembly Council is painfully aware that all our joint efforts to this point still leave significant work to be done in seeking the ways forward in these complex issues. We regret any confusion or frustration this may cause, however we continue to believe the Lord is in control and trust that despite our weaknesses, He will guide us as we prayerfully seek Him.
Please continue to pray for our Association in these matters.
On behalf of the Council I wish you and your loved ones a blessed Christmas season and a refreshing New Year period. May the celebration of Jesus coming be very real to each of us.
Assembly Council Chair