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Chosen for his experience as a police officer, the sergeant-at-arms at this year’s synod was elder Rick Plantinga, Classis B.C. South-East.

Elder Rick Plantinga served as Synod 2011's sergeant at arms.

Karen Huttenga

The sergeant-at-arms is responsible for prodding delegates away from their coffee breaks and back onto the floor of synod. Since he wasn’t provided a shepherd’s crook (as was used at past synods), Plantinga used a drum to catch delegates’ attention.

Keeping people in check comes naturally to Plantinga, who served as a Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer for 35 years in British Columbia, Canada.

But nowadays, Plantinga spends more time watching over bees than people: he raises bees for orchard pollination.

“Bees are easier to get along with and they are a good example of how we should be. They all know their job and don’t have to be told what to do. They even sacrifice themselves for the good of the colony.”

For more coverage while synod is in session, including webcasts, photos, discussion forums, reports, and more, visit the Synod 2011 website.

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