Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Presbytery Overture

This past Saturday, the Philadelphia Presbytery met to deliberate on several matters, each related to the role of women in the diaconate. One product produced from the meeting is an overture to be sent to this summer's General Assembly. Below is an excerpt from that overture which presents the proposal. It follows a number of "whereas" statements.

"Now therefore the Philadelphia Presbytery overtures the 36th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America to create an ad interim study committee whose members are representative of various positions within the PCA with respect to women’s involvement in Diaconal ministry, to study and report back to the 37th General Assembly, on the following:

"1) Scriptural teaching bearing on women’s eligibility for election and ordination to the office of deacon and recommending, if necessary, changes to the BCO in keeping with any findings proceeding from the study of Scripture; and

"2) Should no changes to the BCO be deemed necessary, clarifying an appropriate range of practices for the involvement of women in diaconal ministry and giving guidance regarding current differences in practice among PCA churches including but not limited to the following: (a) may churches choose not to ordain any male deacons? (b) may churches choose to commission but not to ordain male deacons? (c) may women be commissioned as deaconesses without ordaining them as deacons? (d) may the same constitutional questions, or similar questions, used to ordain deacons be used to commission deacons or deaconesses who are not ordained? (e) may Presbyteries license and ordain men who submit themselves to the BCO but who also believe that women should serve as ordained deacons? (f) may churches elect ordained men and commissioned women to serve together in the diaconate? and (g) may churches use the title Deaconess for an elected position of ministry in the church or selected to serve according to BCO 9-7?"


Blogger pduggie said...

What exactly is the body of "4 women and 1 man" that liberti church laid hands on, that is referred to in the overture?

""TE William Krispin, who recorded the minutes in question, shared that the intention of liberti was not to create a Diaconate per se, but wanted to create a leadership body to develop works of leadership, hence the term “commission” of the one man and four women.""

12:23 PM  

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