We have highlighted four of the more significant issues that will be considered at this GA: The Overtures on the Standing Judicial Commission, The Role of Women in Church Offices, Erroneous Views of Creation, and The Insider Movement. Also assembled is a panel of four men to guide discussions on these issues.
The 42nd General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America is set to meet June 16-20, 2014 in Houston. It is difficult, amid all the duties we have as elders in Christ’s church, to have a clear, confessional understanding of all the issues and implications before us at GA. Hard as it may be, our responsibility to prepare remains. To help augment your personal preparation, we as PCA elders are hosting an Evening of Confessional Concern and Prayer prior to the start of the 42nd General Assembly, which will meet on Monday, June 16 in Grand Ballroom J at the Hilton Americas Conference Center at 7:00 p.m.
We have highlighted four of the more significant issues that will be considered at this GA. It has also assembled a panel of four men to guide discussions on these issues: Dr. Sean Lucas, Dr. Rick Phillips, Rev. David Strain and Dr. Guy Waters. These men will address these issues to help us consider their significance before we are asked to vote on them. Each man will be the lead presenter of a topic, and the other men will respond and add their own thoughts.
Our objectives are simple. First, we want to gather PCA elders who are concerned about trends that may threaten our confessional unity as a denomination. Second, we want to highlight and provide information about matters of significant concern to this year’s assembly in the form of overtures and study committee reports. Third, we want to pray to our sovereign, gracious God for the faithfulness, unity, and well-being of our denomination. By expressing concern, providing information, and praying to our Lord, we seek to promote the unity, soundness, and vitality of the PCA. Of these three actions, prayer is undoubtedly the most important and valuable, since, as Psalm 124:8 tells us, “Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.” With these aims in mind, we will be discussing four important issues that will come before the 42nd General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America:
1. The Standing Judicial Commission. The function and oversight of the SJC is obviously a “hot button” issue, based on the number of overtures submitted to the GA this year. Dr. Sean Lucas will be offering his thoughts on how to best address concerns of accountability in the SJC.
2. The Role of Women in Church Offices. Philadelphia Presbytery sent Overture 22 to GA requesting a study committee on the issue of male only eldership. We want to consider the implications of this overture with regard to the consensus in the PCA on the role of women in the church offices. Dr. Guy Waters will help us wade through the sticky questions in this area.
3. Erroneous Views of Creation. Overture 32 deals with erroneous view of creation. Obviously, there is still a concern surrounding the influence of Biologos within the PCA. We want to work our way through this overture. Dr. Rick Phillips will summarize his understanding of the implications of this topic.
4. The Insider Movement. The contents of this report are of great significance as saw at last year’s floor debate. Rev David Strain will consider if this report adequately addresses the objectives of the Assembly.
Following the presentations at this Evening of Confessional Concern and Prayer, we will sing and pray together, asking God to bless our deliberations during GA.
If you are interested in attending this meeting, RSVP to [email protected], or call (706) 798-2691. All commissioners and visitors are invited to this meeting. It is our hope that it will serve Christ’s church at the 42nd General Assembly.
On behalf of our fellow elders,
TE Geoff Gleason
Cliffwood Presbyterian Church
RE Melton Duncan, Sr.
Second Presbyterian Church
TE Richard D. Phillips
Second Presbyterian Church
TE Ken Pierce
Trinity Presbyterian Church
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