Synod 2019 encouraged regional groups of churches (classes) to take a larger, more proactive role in supporting missionaries, but declined to impose it as a rule. Synod is the annual gathering of the Christian Reformed Church.
Synod was responding to a request from Classis Iakota. Concerned that missionaries are being overtaxed by travel for fundraising, the classis asked synod to assign each missionary to a single classis (geographical cluster of churches).
But that approach “would rip our missionaries out of the communities they’ve developed and push them into places they might not be as comfortable,” said Zachary King, director of Resonate Global Mission, the CRC’s missionary-sending agency. Encouraging classes to consider shared missionary support is “less prescriptive,” he added.
“Thank you for recognizing that the intent of our overture [request] was to provide care for our missionary partners,” said Stanley Groothof, Classis Iakota.
“If a classis were motivated, we would love to connect them with a new missionary even as a pilot project,” said King.
Synod 2019 is meeting at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Mich., from June 14-20. For continuous coverage from our award-winning news team, download the Banner app on your mobile device or follow The Banner Magazine on Facebook or @crcbanner on Twitter. You can find more tweeting by following hashtag #crcsynod. News stories will be posted on The Banner’s dedicated Synod web page several times daily. Unless noted otherwise, all photographs are by Karen Huttenga.