Another Presbyterian church seeks to leave

Another local Presbyterian church is asking Pittsburgh Presbytery to dismiss it from the Presbyterian Church (USA) to the more theologically conservative Evangelical Presbyterian Church.

However, unlike some larger Presbyterian congregations that sought similar realignment, the tiny Fourth Presbyterian Church congregation in Friendship has not asked to keep its property. The vote to change denominations was 27-2 on Sunday, said the Rev. Doug Portz, acting pastor to Pittsburgh Presbytery.

The church took the vote "after prayerful consideration and working in a spirit together to honor Christ," said the Rev. Portz, who said that one of the congregation's elders had authorized him to speak about it on behalf of the congregation as well as the presbytery. Although the church is not asking to keep its building, issues regarding a property settlement will be worked out before the presbytery votes on the request for dismissal at a future meeting, he said.

The pastor of Fourth Presbyterian, the Rev. David Shrader, has said that he intends to remain in the Presbyterian Church (USA) and will not be leaving with his congregation, the Rev. Portz said.



Jim Powers said...

The official numbers from the PC (USA) released this week show a record loss of 95,343 members (4.4%) for 2007. At this rate, no one will be left in 23 years.

We are hemorrhaging membership, and our denomination leaders don’t seem to get it. When every church is withdrawing because of a lack of adherence to scripture, what does that say?

When was the last time a church left the PC (USA) because the national denomination was perceived to be too conservative????

Anonymous said...

Great point Jim. So when can we welcome you into the Catholic church? :)

Jim Powers said...

Thanks for the invite! But I better keep my PC (USA) membership up at least until this year’s General Assembly meeting in San Jose in June. I’m hoping to be an overture advocate for the Beaver-Butler Presbytery. If I get shot down again, like I did at the last General Assembly meeting in Birmingham, I may take you up on you offer!

Anonymous said...

I'm Catholic and my boyfriend is becoming Catholic. I told my boyfriend's family that they should move to the Presbyterian of America. The church they attend now is a U.S.A. A lot of the congregation is leaving. It's sad though because his mom is a teacher at theirs and they're attached to the people there and everything. I pray that it's resolved with God's desires so there's no more division. God bless and lots of love!