The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)'s highest legislative body voted Wednesday to approve a new Form of Government that will help the denomination adapt to the 21st century.
Praising the vote, Cindy Bolbach, moderator of the 219th General Assembly, said adopting the proposed revision to part of the PC(USA)'s constitution is a "step forward for the church to not just survive, but thrive," as reported by the denomination.
The revisions do not change the denomination's constitutional standards but they are intended to return the Form of Government to its role as a constitution rather than a regulatory manual. more >>
The debate over allowing noncelibate homosexuals to be ordained is tiring, many Presbyterians agreed. But a moratorium, they felt, also would not bring any peace.
Delegates of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) began voicing their personal testimonies and arguments over ordination standards Monday at their biennial legislative meeting.
"One of my teachers is Archbishop Tutu," said Michael Adee, who argued in support of gay ordination, as reported by More Light Presbyterians. "He said, 'God loves all. All, all, all. Which part of all do you not understand?' Barriers dehumanize people. Exclusion makes a child of God doubt they are child of God. We don't need step children in Presbyterian Church." more >>
A pro-gay marriage candidate was elected Saturday to serve as moderator of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) for the 219th General Assembly.
Cynthia Bolbach, an elder from Arlington, Va., was the only candidate out of six to express unqualified support for same-sex marriage, as reported by the denomination.
"Who poses the greatest threat to the institution of marriage: Larry King who has been married 8 times" or a gay couple (friends of hers) in Washington, D.C., who have been together for 62 years and who got married two weeks ago?” she said. more >>
The oldest Jewish human rights organization urged the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) this week to not approve a report focused on the Israel-Palestinian conflict.
B’Nai B’Rith, a Jewish humanitarian, human rights and advocacy organization with a 166-year history, opposes a controversial report by the PC(USA)’s Middle East Study Committee, which will be presented at the denomination’s General Assembly that begins Saturday.
The report, according to the Jewish group, “dramatically emphasizes” Israel’s responsibility for the Israel-Palestinian conflict, while “belittling” Arab wrongdoings. It also fails to recognize the historic Jewish roots to the land and Israel’s peace efforts while confronted with terrorism. more >>
An Aurora, Ill., congregation was dismissed this week from the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).
Blackhawk Presbytery voted on Tuesday to accept the dismissal request of First Presbyterian Church, which will be realigning with a smaller and more conservative denomination, the Evangelical Presbyterian Church.
"[W]e have compromised to reach this agreement; we have agreed to mutual material sacrifices; and we have acknowledged fundamental differences remain. This is, however, our best effort to act in the way of Christ putting others before ourselves, supporting Christian ministry and mission of both FPC Aurora and of the Presbytery, and seeking the reconciliation to which we are called in Christ," the presbytery said in its agreement. more >>
A Presbyterian congregation near Phoenix, Ariz., says it's time to end family arguments and move out of the PC(USA) house.
Desert Hills Presbyterian Church recently announced its intent to sever ties with the 2.1 million-member Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) while remaining in the Reformed family as an independent church.
"I'm looking forward to ending the cyclical family arguments so I can be free to discuss other things," said senior pastor Jim Noble in the congregation's latest newsletter. "While I am committed to encouraging people to question and grow in their faith, I am not interested in rethinking and re-imagining the Christian faith. I stand with the historic and biblical Christian faith." more >>