Thursday, October 26, 2006

The Classical Presbyterian on Property Issues in the PC(USA)

Toby Brown (aka The Classical Presbyterian) has summarized his feelings regarding the property issue that is causing much anxiety in the Presbyterian Church (USA). He makes some excellent points (ten in all) and three of them are quoted below:
1. Churches who wish to depart from the denomination should attempt to do so by engaging in conversation with their presbytery. You've been in this group this long, so why not make the attempt to make your case before your fellow presbyters? And so what if they 'preempt' you and take you to court? Would you rather be the victim or the aggressor? (See the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew.)

9. The presbyteries must also admit that summary secular legal actions and threats will revoke their spiritual authority over the congregation. You can't serve two masters. Either make a commitment to be the church and love like Jesus, or just admit that you are a financial entity.

10. Show each other grace and love. This should go without saying, but we all know that all too often it doesn't. Shame on us.
The others are pretty good points, too, but you should go over there and read them, and while you are there, read some of his other postings. Toby Brown is a "classical" Presbyterian, and not all are going to agree with him, but he certainly makes his case clearly and compellingly.

2 comments:

Toby Brown said...

Not everyone is going to agree with me? Why whatever do you mean? :)

Seriously though, thanks for the citation. This whole property war thing really gets me down.

I would not want to hold any congregation within this denomination against their will. That seems a little too close to the old Roman hegemony to me...

Whether liberal or conservative, congregations should be free to stay or go as they feel called to do. You can't enforce love the last time I checked!

Denis Hancock said...

Not everyone is going to agree with me? Why whatever do you mean? :)

How about you (and I, for that matter) are classical Presbyterians in a "post-classical" denomination?

Or at least a denomination that seems not particularly concerned with confessional standards.