Canadian Council of Churches Names CRC Staff Member as Acting General Secretary

The Canadian Council of Churches (CCC), an ecumenical nonprofit organization comprising 25 Christian denominations in Canada, has announced Peter Noteboom as new acting general secretary, a role similar to an executive director, beginning October 1, 2017. Noteboom has been serving as deputy general secretary for the organization, with responsibilities in finance and administration, for the past five years and since 1999 has been the council’s associate secretary, justice and peace.

Noteboom is also currently Canada director of advancement for the Christian Reformed Church Foundation, a position he will leave Sept. 30.

“I am honored and daunted by the responsibility that the president and executive committee have asked me to take up, and I’m looking forward to it,” said Noteboom.

The executive committee opted to appoint an acting leader for the council at a time of transition for the 70-year-old institution. Outgoing general secretary Karen Hamilton is finishing her third five-year term, and the council is undergoing an operational review. “We thought it was a good interim time to appoint someone who could help us with that transition and to look for the kind of position we need in the future,” said council president Alyson Barnett-Cowan. “It’s like any long-term pastor—it’s good to have an interim person come and kind of help stir things up and see what’s what and reposition people for a new day.” The council expects to name a permanent general secretary in May 2018.

Noteboom is a member of First CRC in Toronto, Ont., and is currently serving as chair of the executive committee for Classis Toronto, a regional group of Christian Reformed churches. He plans to continue in that volunteer position as well as the role of president and chair of the board for Global Learning Partners.

While Noteboom has been active in the CRC, serving on the Board of Trustees (now the Council of Delegates) and many other roles, his service at the CCC is outside of his denominational affiliation. “None of the staff of the council represent their denominational traditions but are expressly at the service of the whole, working on behalf of all 25 member denominations,” Noteboom said.

The council, Barnett-Cowan said, is a forum for mutual learning and education and a place to discern together God’s work. Also, the common voice that the council represents for Christians “gives us a platform, gives us access—people pay attention because it’s a body that represents so many Christians.”

“Over 70 years the council has made incredible contributions to society and public life in Canada, and I’m eager to see those continue to grow and to prosper,” Noteboom said.

About the Author

Alissa Vernon is a news editor at The Banner.

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