organi­sation

organi­sation

Churches that are situated in close proximity usually meet twice per year by way of classis meetings. At these meetings the churches seek to mutually assist one another and exercise oversight over each other. Theolo­gical candi­dates, eligible for a call by one of these churches, are examined at these meetings. Three or four classes meet together annually in what is called a parti­cular or provincial synod, of which there are four in the CGKN. Once every three years, the churches meet in a general synod. The synod is made up of 52 office bearers who are delegated by the four parti­cular synods. The professors of the Theolo­gical University at Apeldoorn are present as advisers.

The various tasks of the churches are dealt with by several committees, appointed and mandated by the general synod. These committees remain respon­sible to synod fot the way they fulfil their mandate. The reformed structure of church government implies that during the time between the meetings of a classis or a synod there is no eccle­si­as­tical ruling body except for the local consis­tories. This means that the CGKN have no central hierar­chical authority structure.

With gratitude we mention the fact that during the time of its existence the CGKN have been spared the pains of church split, although a number of individual ministers and congre­ga­tions have left the denomi­nation. The preser­vation of the bond of unity has not always been easy, since there are different emphases and nuances in respect to the way personal faith is experienced and preached. On the one side there are those who strongly emphasize the covenant of grace by way of 'covenantal preaching'. On the other side, there are those who emphasize the 'experiental preaching'. At times, this results in definite tension. To a certain point, the roots of these problems lie in the past. There are also certain theolo­gical devel­op­ments (e.g. in herme­neutics) that cause friction. However, there still is unity within the CGKN, a unity that is deter­mined by the Scrip­tures and the Reformed Confes­sions.

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