The Advisory Committee on the Constitution advises the 218th General Assembly (2008) regarding Item 05-09 with the following comment.
The Advisory Committee on the Constitution refers the 218th General Assembly (2008) to its advice concerning Item 05-01, which sets forth the background that the Advisory Committee on the Constitution believes the assembly should consider in addressing each of the items related to ordination and installation of church officers.
Item 05-09 seeks to delete G-6.0106b from the Form of Government, to substitute a new provision in its place, and to set aside previous authoritative interpretations regarding ordination standards. The Advisory Committee on the Constitution advised the 213th General Assembly (2001), and assemblies since then, that the removal of G-6.0106b alone (or likewise, substitution of new provisions for the existing G-6.0106b) would not alter the church’s position on ordination standards unless the General Assembly also amended or rescinded current authoritative interpretations regarding the eligibility of homosexual persons to hold church office. Approval of this overture would accomplish its intent to modify the church’s position on ordination standards by taking both of the actions the Advisory Committee on the Constitution has advised are necessary to achieve that result.
The proposed language for G-6.0106b substitutes a standard of obedience to Jesus Christ for the current provisions of G-6.0106b. Governing bodies would be given discretion in the application of this standard to particular candidates through the examination process. The proposed language is clear and not inconsistent with any other provision of the Book of Order.
Impact of the proposed revisions to the proposed revised Form of Government before the assembly: To the extent the 218th General Assembly (2008) wishes to make amendment to the current G-6.0106b, the identical provision in the proposed Form of Government is found at 2.0103b.