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June 22, 2012


Evangelical Presbyterian Church General Assembly, Day 2

We’ve been meeting all day, and dealing with a wide variety of mundane and internal issues, as well as doing a lot of praying and beginning with an inspiring service of Communion. This afternoon, we took the first action that the rest of the world would be interested in, and that’s to go on the record as opposed to the so-called “preventive care mandate,” i.e., the contraception mandate, in Obamacare.

Yours truly had the opportunity in the discussion to make the same point I’ve been making here for months, which is that this has nothing to do with contraception, but rather is about religious liberty. “It will not stop with contraception,” I said in my best rabble-rousing voice. “The EPC, as a self-insuring agency, will eventually be required to pay for abortion. We dare not let things get to that point.” Though one person spoke against it, it was nevertheless passed unanimously. The EPC now stands with our Catholic brethren in defying Leviathan.

Since Steve Salyards of GA Junkie mentioned them, I’ll also cover three other items. One is that we wrapped up the work of our two five-year transitional presbyteries. In the course of their work, well over 100 former PCUSA were given a safe haven while they sought the Lord’s will for their congregational future. The vast majority of them went on to join the EPC. The presbyteries have now been formally dissolved, and from this point forward all churches that desire to come into the EPC will be asked to seek to be received directly into a geographical presbytery.

A second has to do with confidentiality in ministerial salaries. We agreed with the proposed approach, which while it would continue the practice of having terms of call (including salary) a matter of presbyterial record, would bring some privacy to future changes in salaries, at least at the presbyterial level. Finally, a new policy regarding the formation of presbyteries was adopted, but no new presbyteries are being formed at this time.


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9 comments

Excellent news that Presbyterians stand with Roman Catholics in defending religious liberty! Good for you, David, that you made that point so vehemently !! Glad that things are going well for some and former PCUSA congregations have found a new home.

[1] Posted by SC blu cat lady on 6-22-2012 at 04:03 PM · [top]

Watching many PCUSA ‘jumping ship’ in the area I live.  Very pleased to see they are standing with the Catholic Church in fighting HHS Mandate.

[2] Posted by priestwalter on 6-22-2012 at 06:22 PM · [top]

Priestwalter: Where are you?

[3] Posted by David Fischler on 6-22-2012 at 07:59 PM · [top]

David .. the EPC gained a few of those listed at ‘other’ in this article:

http://www.pcusa.org/news/2012/6/21/stated-clerk-releases-pcusa-2011-statistics/

First two paragraphs:

The Office of the General Assembly has released the 2011 statistics of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). The statistical materials include a comparative summary of the PC(USA) membership, a summary of receipts and expenditures from 2008-2011, and additional miscellaneous information.

The total membership of the PC(USA) at the end of 2011 was 1,952,287, compared to 2,016,091 in 2010, which is a decline of 63,804 members.

[4] Posted by Reformed Catholic on 6-22-2012 at 08:42 PM · [top]

#3 Central Valley of California

[5] Posted by priestwalter on 6-22-2012 at 10:09 PM · [top]

Priestwalter: yes, that has been a very fertile field. At this point, I think we’ve received more new churches from California than any other state except Pennsylvania.

[6] Posted by David Fischler on 6-23-2012 at 02:47 PM · [top]

Just learned that a large local PCUSA church has just voted to leave PCUSA. Perhaps another EPC church in the offing?

[7] Posted by SC blu cat lady on 6-25-2012 at 02:01 PM · [top]

Re: #7: If I may ask, which one?

[8] Posted by David Fischler on 6-25-2012 at 08:30 PM · [top]

David,
I sent you a PM as the name of the church probably should not be mentioned here. They just voted yesterday.

[9] Posted by SC blu cat lady on 6-25-2012 at 09:48 PM · [top]

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