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Synod 2022 Summary

June 22, 2022
Synod 2022
Synod 2022
Steve Herppich for The Banner

Synod is the annual decision-making meeting of the Christian Reformed Church in North America. This meeting had not been held since 2019 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That made the June 10-16 in-person meeting on the campus of Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Mich., seem extra special and extra weighty to everyone involved and to those watching from home this year. 

To give delegates a bit more time to deal with three years’ worth of agenda material, Synod 2022 began with a virtual convening session on May 25. The assembly also had a large consent agenda that allowed matters not needing advisory-committee or plenary-floor discussion to be received as information by way of a single recommendation. 

Because this year’s meeting would engage with especially contentious subjects such as an organizational restructuring and a report from the Committee to Articulate a Foundation-laying Biblical Theology of Human Sexuality, the Council of Delegates had also urged that Synod 2022 be undergirded with a year of prayer. 

This emphasis on prayer continued throughout the week-long event with devotions focused on prayer, prayer volunteers throughout the building, and special times focused on small group prayer. 

A recap of the first five days of Synod 2022 was shared last week. 

During the remaining two days, delegates discussed the report on human sexuality, ultimately deciding to adopt the report, declare its position on homosexual sex “confessional,” and order Neland Avenue CRC (Grand Rapids, Mich.) to comply with this decision. (Neland Avenue had previously ordained a deacon in a same-sex marriage). 

See Banner coverage:

  1. Everyone’s Talking about the Human Sexuality Report
  2. Synod Upholds Traditional Stance on Same-Sex Relationships
  3. Synod Declares Stance on Homosexual Sex ‘Confessional’
  4. Neland Avenue Ordered to Comply with Denominational Position on Same-Sex Marriage 
  5. Closed Doors during Synod’s Sexuality Discussion Have Mixed Reaction
  6. Delegates Find Crowd of LGBTQ Allies outside their Session
  7. LGBTQ Allies Lament at Synod

In matters not related to human sexuality, Synod 2022 adopted a new organizational structure and appointed Dr. Zachary King as general secretary. They also talked about racism and encouraged church leaders to preach about race and justice matters, to defend biblical justice, and to seek to change exploitative structures and indifferent systems. 

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Delegates discussed preventing the abuse of power and decided to circulate a draft Code of Conduct to churches for the coming year to solicit input on how it could work at the local church and classis levels. 

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Synod 2022 also thanked several people for their years of service. These included Colin P. Watson, Sr, who is retiring as executive director of the CRCNA; John Bolt, chief financial officer of the CRCNA; and Michael K. Le Roy, president of Calvin University. 

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These and other stories are being provided by The Banner and were posted to the synod newsroom daily. To stay up to date during future synods, sign up for a daily synod email newsletter