The Presbytery of the Siouxlands has scheduled a called meeting for October 20, 2009 in Watertown, S.D. to hear two complaints against recent actions taken at its last stated meeting.The meeting will be held at the Best Western Ramkota Hotel Event Center, Watertown, South Dakota, 1901 9th Avenue Southwest, at 10 a.m.
Several TEs have complained against the Presbytery’s action rejecting its own investigative committee’s report concerning the views of one of her teaching elders. The investigative committee recommended that the Presbytery find a “a strong presumption of guilt” (BCO 31-2) that the views of TE Greg Lawrence, pastor of Christ Church in Mankato, Minn., are out of accord with the Standards as interpreted by the General Assembly. Both the committee and the complainants reference the General Assembly’s Report on Federal Vision theology as part of their rationale.
Instead of adopting the committee’s report, the Presbytery adopted a motion not to find a strong presumption of guilt in any area concerning “the so-called Federal Vision.” The vote was 20-17-1 in favor of the motion.
The Presbytery will also hear an overture from the session of FoothillsCommunityChurch in Sturgis, S.D. which asks for a BCO 31-2 judicial investigation of the views of a teaching elder. This overture comes in response to the lengthy statement which the teaching elder read on the floor of Presbytery defending his motion to exonerate TE Lawrence. Of specific concern to the session of Foothills PCA were his statements such as:
In attributing to all the baptized some form of union, adoption, new life, and forgiveness, TE Lawrence is speaking the language of our tradition and of our Scriptures. By refusing to attribute absolute and final union, adoption, new life, and forgiveness, TE Lawrence is directly in line with our standards.
The Presbytery of the Siouxlands is a member of the Presbyterian Church in America; it has 17 Churches in North and South Dakota and Minnesota. It holds Stated Meetings in January, April, and September.
Brian Carpenter is pastor of FoothillsCommunityChurch in Sturgis, S.D.