FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 3, 2023
SPOKANE, WASHINGTON. Delegates at the 2023 General Council of the U.S. Christian and Missionary Alliance (the C&MA, The Alliance) voted to update the language of its Statement of Faith for the first time since 1966.
The recommendations presented were the culmination of a four-year “National Conversation,” where U.S. Alliance President John Stumbo and Church Ministries Vice President Terry Smith conducted dozens of in-person and online regional discussions with church leaders in all U.S. Alliance districts.
In approving nearly all of the proposed recommendations, Alliance Council delegates voted to preserve their historic beliefs while enhancing the Statement’s readability and relevance for future generations of Alliance believers and workers.
The adopted recommendations affirm the Alliance’s Trinitarian view of God by reinforcing the position of Jesus Christ as both “sent one” and “sender” in fulfillment of the Father’s redemptive plan to reconcile all humankind to Himself. The updated Statement also strengthens the emphasis on the gifts and fruit of the Holy Spirit made available to every believer.
In addition, the Statement retains the historic Alliance view regarding the inerrancy and verbal inspiration of the Scriptures; provides greater clarification regarding the process of salvation with the addition of language such as “justified by grace through faith”; and addresses the reality of spiritual warfare by incorporating terms like “delivered from the dominion of darkness.” The Statement also reaffirms The Alliance’s historical premillennial view of Christ’s return without disqualifying those with varying millennial views from ministry within The Alliance.
Also culminating from the four-year National Discussion were a series of recommendations regarding the polity of men and women in spiritual leadership. The adopted recommendations upheld that eldership in Alliance churches consists of the lead pastor, elected lay elders, and other male members of the licensed ministry staff as deemed appropriate by the local church. In addition, delegates approved that the designation “Consecrated and Ordained” be used to indicate the denomination’s endorsement on all official workers, both male and female, who meet the stated qualifications for Alliance ministry and have successfully completed the consecration and ordination process outlined in the Manual of The Christian and Missionary Alliance. Official workers may also carry the title of “pastor” or “reverend” for specific ministry roles at the discretion of local church leadership.
Council delegates conducted their discussions with grace, forbearance, and a continuing commitment to solidarity in the task of creating and sustaining a meaningful, impactful gospel presence among the remaining unreached peoples of the world.
The Christian and Missionary Alliance was birthed in 1887 from a vision of Pastor A. B. Simpson in New York City, who became heartbroken over the plight of the immigrant, the outcast, and the marginalized. Today, we share his passion to offer tangible help and lasting hope to the world’s neediest people. Through 2,000 U.S. churches and 700 workers in 70 countries, we pay forward the love of Jesus to unreached, overlooked, and displaced people in our U.S. communities and throughout the world through a variety of church planting, community development, and compassionate care ministries and initiatives that advance our All of Jesus for All the World vision.
Director for Media Relations