Melissa Palmer Howell was ordained yesterday afternoon at Carmichael SDA Church in Sacramento, California.
Howell joined the Carmichael pastoral staff in June, 2015, as pastor for Children's Ministries. Melissa is married to Pastor Greg Howell. The couple met at Union College in Greek class. They later married and now have four children.
Greg Howell was a pastor at Mt. Vernon SDA Church in Washington state until 2015, which is when Melissa was called to the Carmichael Church. Greg is not on the pastoral staff at Carmichael, which consists of:
Senior Pastor: Keith Jacobson
Pastor of Visitation: Kari Jacobson
Junior High & High School: Benji Ferguson
Discipleship & Outreach: Pedro Trinidad
Family Life: Melissa Howell
So it appears that Greg Howell sacrificed his ministry career to advance Melissa’s. He is now a full-time pastor’s husband.
In attendance at the ordination service were Mitch Williams, Melissa’s childhood pastor at La Crescenta SDA Church in southern California. Williams stated that he believed Melissa was destined for ministry, because she did not have the stage fright that most youngsters have when they are up front in a church setting.
Also present was Chanda M. Nunes, associate pastor of the Capitol City SDA Church in Sacramento. Interestingly, Nunes stated that “Pastor Howell” should, after her ordination, be referred to as “Elder Howell,” thus explicitly connecting ordination as it is practiced in the SDA Church with the biblical office of elder. This was re-iterated by senior pastor Keith Jacobson during the laying on of hands ceremony, and by NCC president Marc Woodson during his post-ceremony homily.
Pastor Bill Roberts, a pastor in the Washington Conference who had been on the pastoral staff at Mt. Vernon, preached the homily, after which the laying on of hands ceremony took place. During the this ceremony, a roar of thunder was audibly heard, which Pastor Jacobson, and later Elder Woodson, interpreted as God’s blessing on the ordination.
After that, Northern California Conference President Marc K. Woodson spoke briefly, and “upadated” Ellen White’s quote on the greatest want of the world:
“The greatest want of the world is the want of women—women who will not be bought or sold, women who in their inmost souls are true and honest, women who do not fear to call sin by its right name, women whose conscience is as true to duty as the needle to the pole, women who will stand for the right though the heavens fall.”
Woodson also “confessed” that Howell had had several calls that she didn’t know about. Woodson said that he did not pass some of them on to her because they were from places where she would not have been ordained.
The Columbia Union and the Pacific Union have concluded, in accordance with all currently available evidence, that the San Antonio vote was an unenforceable nullity, and they are acting accordingly.
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