On 22 and 23 August, 2017, an historical event took place in Benoni, Johannesburg, when the moderatures of URCSA and the Dutch Reformed Church met. They were joined by the moderators of the regional synods of both churches. And they talked about … unification. Actually, they did not only talk about it, they took decisions that will actually start the process of unification … from the congregations upwards.
Three decisions were taken to kick-start this process:
- Firstly, the regional moderators are to inform and support presbyteries and congregations to start with unification talks between local congregations of the URCSA and DRC.
- Secondly, the actuaries of the regional synods will be trained to assist congregations to talk to one another and move towards the process of unification in terms of the Provisional Church Order.
- Thirdly, facilitators will be made available to assist people from both churches to listen to one another with respect.
The Joint Leadership Team, consisting of the moderatures and the regional moderators of URCSA and the DRC, will meet again in February 2018. If the above decisions are in place by 2018, unification will be possible within the next eight years. The movement towards unification has started! This is indeed a massive step forward.