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Morning worship on Saturday was led by the Council for Pacific and Asian American Ministries. Elder Leo Poluan preached on 1 Corinthians 12:12-27. Council members and leaders read Psalm 124:8 in a variety of languages: Taiwanese, Indonesian, Mandarin, Korean, Japanese, Taishanese, Cantonese, and English.

Restructuring team’s work concludes

On Saturday morning, General Synod finished discussing and voting on restructuring recommendations from the RCA restructuring team. The discussions were laced with care, concern, and even celebration as delegates considered the implications of the recommendations. The body approved three of the remaining five recommendations and denied two. Read the in-depth overview here, which includes next steps before full approval and implementation.

Read what the synod decided on Saturday about restructuring team recommendations.

Read the decisions on the first half of the team’s recommendations, considered on Friday evening.

The plenary session ended with thanks, both from and for the restructuring team, including applause and a standing ovation.

“From the bottom of my heart, well done. You have not only given us an excellent report, but you have given us the gift of an excellent process,” said delegate Rev. Brian Keepers. “I believe the fruit of how this has gone last night and today testifies to your faithfulness and integrity.”

Synod celebrates 27 newly organized churches 

Saturday evening, General Synod celebrated the 27 newest churches to be officially organized into the RCA family since October 2023. We warmly welcome the following churches:  

Buenas Noticias de Dios para Multitudes in Sotano, Venezuela
Ministerio Cristiano Ciudad Fuerte in San Felix, Venezuela
Iglesia Renacer Guayana in La Vega, Venezuela
Iglesia Evangelica Renacer in Bella Artes, Venezuela
Centro Cristiano Oasis de Bendicion in Maturin, Venezuela
Ministerio Apostolico de Restauración Profética in Maturin, Venezuela
MiCentro Cristiano Apostolico Obra de Vida in Esparta, Venezuela
A.C. Iglesia Nazareth Ciudad Fiel in El Tigre, Venezuela
Iglesia Manifestacion del Reino in Bolivar, Venezuela
Iglesia Cristiana Rios de Agua Viva in Esparta, California
Cantico Nuevo in Humble, Texas
Iglesia Nueva Vida in Plano, Texas
Iglesia Oasis Internacional in Carrollton, Texas
Iglesia Reformada Impacto in Pittsburg, Texas
Iglesia El Buen Pastor in Round Rock, Texas
Iglesia Edificadores in Cedar Park, Texas
Iglesia Cristiana Emmanuel de Turlock in Turlock, California
Rectify Church in Allegan, Michigan
Wyoming Harbor Church in Wyoming, Michigan
El Buen Pastor in Pharr, Texas
Iglesia Aliento de Vida in Pharr, Texas
Iglesia Remanente de Gracia in Mission, Texas
Iglesia Cristiana Alianza Reformada in Pharr, Texas
Iglesia Reformada la Luz de Valle in Pharr, Texas
Iglesia Expansion in Santiago, Chile
Iglesia Cristiana Semilla de Oracion in Samana, Dominican Republic
Nueva Esperanza in Mesa, Arizona

Each newly organized church received a welcome award from the denomination. Rev. Jacob Soto traveled from Chile to be present at General Synod to receive his church’s award. 

Welcoming churches from outside the U.S. and Canada is a growing trend within several RCA classes. Earlier this week, General Synod formed a task force to look at opportunities and challenges to inform and establish a smooth process for organizing and adopting churches outside of North America moving forward.

What is The Center?

The Center for Church Ministry and Multiplication is a collaborative effort of RCA ministry staff to serve and equip regional synods, classes, and local churches so that they may thrive and minister in their own unique contexts. Delegates heard from the center’s staff members, learning about equipping opportunities available to them and their congregations. Areas of equipping include women’s transformation and leadership, next generation engagement, race relations and advocacy, disability concerns, leadership development, multiplication, and local missional engagement. 

The center carries out the vision of Transformed & Transforming.

For more information or a next step, contact

Commissions to participate in antiracism training

The Commission on Race and Ethnicity (CORE) called for General Synod commissions to annually seek the advice and input from each of the denomination’s four racial and ethnic councils. The General Synod followed the advice of the advisory committee and referred the motion to the Commission on Church Order, in consultation with CORE, to incorporate into the bylaws of the General Synod.

CORE’s next recommendation—for each commission to participate in antiracism training at least once every two years—brought extensive discussion on racism and privilege.

During the conversation, Rev. Dr. Micah McCreary, a General Synod professor and president of New Brunswick Theological Seminary, called the body to “make note of the comfort and discomfort in moments like this and how important it is for us to pay attention to it and tune into it, to not shut down, to not become angry, to not become frustrated. …

“We are family, and I thank God for that,” he added. “And I appreciate us dealing with these kinds of things rather than just pushing them aside because they’re uncomfortable.”

In their report, CORE lamented the low number of churches that reported having participated in an antiracism training in the last year. Commission moderator Rev. Kelvin Spooner called it the responsibility of churches to raise this number, rather than of the commission. Corresponding delegate Rev. Katlyn DeVries spoke in favor of this recommendation, noting how it might be a next step to increasing the number of RCA churches participating in antiracism training.

“The more people in the denomination that have done an antiracism training, I think the more that spreads back to the churches,” said DeVries, moderator for the Commission on History. “I see starting with the commissions as a really good way to continue this work that we hope will not just be for the commissions but for the entire denomination.”

In the end, the General Synod approved the recommendation. As such, each commission’s training is “to include discussion of how the RCA’s antiracism policy affects the commission’s work. This training can coincide with opportunities offered through or approved by the RCA Office of Diversity and Belonging; working through the staff office will enable commissions to find trainings that are both meaningful and do not have additional budgetary impact” (RE 24-2, Workbook p. 296).

Read the CORE report for the full details.

Other business

  • General Synod heard reports from many of its commissions, including the Commissions on Christian Discipleship and Education, History, Christian Worship, Theology, Christian Action, Race and Ethnicity, and Nominations.
  • The Commission on Church Order also presented its report, bringing a few amendments to the Book of Church Order and the General Synod bylaws in response to referrals from previous General Synods, including one that significantly simplifies the plan document for union churches (churches that belong to the RCA and another denomination simultaneously). Much of the commission’s work in the past year has been related to the work of the restructuring team; other work stemmed from inquiries received from constituencies in the RCA, to which the commission has provided advisory responses.
  • To assist with Christian decision-making in anxious times, the Commission on Theology presented and commended a bibliography, “Building Brave Spaces Together: A Short Bibliography to Guide Christian Discernment.” Synod also voted to commend “On the Rafters of the Cathedral of Love,” a paper written by the Commission on Theology, to all RCA assemblies and the General Synod professors for reading and reflection. 
  • The General Synod approved the Commission on Christian Action’s recommendation to commend the ongoing work of the U.S. and Canadian governments toward a permanent ceasefire in Gaza. As directed, the general secretary will both send a letter to appropriate governmental bodies, and send a communication to all RCA churches and assemblies, including resources to equip congregations for meaningful dialogue and advocacy.

Watch the videostream of General Synod worship and plenary sessions

For full coverage of General Synod 2024, visit