Wednesday, July 25, 2007

25 July 2007

[ 1 ]
Chalmers Center Seeks New Director
[ 2 ] ARP Mission Executive Gets American Citizenship
[ 3 ] Oriental Orthodox Reach Historic Accord
[ 4 ] Episcopal Women's Conference
[ 5 ] Lutheran Unity Expands -- AALC and LCMS
[ 6 ] C$600,000 Isn't Enough Matheson Wants C$2.5
[ 7 ] Taliban Seizes Presbyterians
[ 8 ] The Slave Trade Is Expanding
[ 9 ] Billy Graham Does Jonathan Edwards

[ 1 ]
Chalmers Center Seeks New Director

The Chalmers Center for Economic and Community Development is seeking qualified candidates for a Senior Director. The Chalmers Center, a research and training initiative of Covenant College, equips churches and missionaries to declare the Kingdom of God in word and in deed by bringing economic development and spiritual transformation in the context of poor communities around the globe.

The Senior Director reports to the Executive Director and is the primary person responsible for managing the Chalmers Center's human and financial resources in order to maximize the Chalmers Center's impact. The application deadline is 15 August, 2007.

+ Covenant College, 14049 Scenic Highway, Lookout Mountain, Georgia 30750 (706) 820-1560

[ 2 ]
ARP Mission Executive Gets American Citizenship

Rev. Frank van Dalen, executive director of World Witness , became a naturalized American citizen on 17 July in a ceremony at Charleston, South Carolina The staff of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Center along with family members congratulated the new American at festivities in the World Witness conference room Wednesday morning. van Dalen has held citizenship in both New Zealand and Holland. World Witness is the foreign mission arm of the ARP church.

+ Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church, 1 Cleveland St., Greenville, South Carolina 29601-3646 (864) 232-8297

[ 3 ]
Oriental Orthodox Reach Historic Accord

Through an agreement signed on 13 July 2007 in Cairo, Egypt, the Armenian Catholicosate of Cilicia, the Coptic Orthodox Church and the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church have "solemnly declared their unity of faith, their commitment to common witness and their readiness to deepen and expand collaboration, leaving behind more than two decades of tensions.” The three churches belong to the Oriental Orthodox family, which also includes the Syrian, Indian, and Eritrean churches. These churches have world-wide Diaspora.

In a letter to the heads of the other churches, Pope Shenouda III, Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of All Africa and Abune Paulos, Patriarch and Catholicos of Ethiopia and Archbishop of Axum, as well as to Catholicos Aram I, Catholicos of the Armenian Apostolic Church (See of Cilicia), who played an instrumental role as mediator.

Pope Shenouda III served as one of the WCC presidents from 1991-1998; Abune Paulos currently serves as one of the WCC presidents, having been elected in 2006. And Catholicos Aram I served as the WCC central committee moderator for two terms from 1991-2006.

+ The Diocese of the Armenian Church of America, 630 Second Avenue, New York, New York 10016

[ 4 ]
Episcopal Women's Conference

St. Paul's Reformed Episcopal Church in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, announces their second annual women's conference, "Getting Wisdom: God's Blueprint for Life." It will be held at the Holiday Inn on I-12 on 3 and 4 August. The speaker will be Ruth Crenshaw, wife of the dean of Cranmer Theological House. The US$35 fee, which is waived for clergy and seminary couples, includes conference materials, three meals, refreshments, and gratuity.

+ St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, PO Box 86866,Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70879 (225) 362-8264

[ 5 ]
Lutheran Unity Expands -- AALC and LCMS

The American Association of Lutheran Churches (AALC), meeting in convention 20-23 June in St. Paul, Minnesota, has declared altar and pulpit fellowship with The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod. A similar resolution came before the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS) convention, July 14-19 in Houston. The LCMS Commission on Theology and Church Relations recommended altar and pulpit fellowship following two years of formal dialogue between representatives of the two church bodies.

The AALC was organized by pastors and congregations with doctrinal concerns -- particularly about the authority of Scripture -- when three Lutheran church bodies formed the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America in 1988. AALC membership now includes 79 congregations, 107 active pastors, and 14,137 baptized members.

+ The AALC National Offices, 801 West 106 Street, Suite 203,Minneapolis, Minnesota 55420-5603

[ 6 ]
C$600,000 Isn't Enough Matheson Wants C$2.5

Gael Matheson, who won a C$600,000 human rights settlement from P.E.I.'s Presbyterian Church in June for wrongful dismissal, is suing the church for C$2.5 million.

Court papers accuse the church of failing to fulfill its obligations to Matheson as a minister, frustrating her attempts to seek justice, and failing to deal with the allegations made against her and seek damages for the loss of past and future income, and pension. None of the allegations have been proven in court.

Matheson's battle with the church has been going on for 11 years; she claims she lost her job because she's a woman, after being a pastor to four Presbyterian congregations in the Murray Harbour area from 1983 to 1996. When she was removed from her position, Matheson filed a complaint with the P.E.I. Human Rights Commission.

The appeal is a gamble. Matheson will risk her C$600,000 be appealing. The church is seeking full dismissal on all counts.

+ Presbyterian Record, 50 Wynford Drive, Toronto, Ontario M3C 1J7

[ 7 ]
Taliban Seizes Presbyterians

Some time between 13 July and 20 July a delegation of 23 people from the Saemmul Presbyterian Church in Bundang, South Korea, went missing in Pakistan. Qari Yousuf Ahgmadi, identified by the Associated Press as a Taliban spokesman, claimed the Presbyterians were in safe hands. Oh Soo In, identified in published reports as a spokesman for the Saemmul congregation, stated that captives were in Afghanistan on vacation, expecting to volunteer in hospital near Kandahar.

Apart from short-term missionaries like those in Afghanistan, the nine-year-old Saemmul church of 3,800 members sponsors 50 foreign missionaries. Collectively South Korea is believed to have an excess of 12,000 missionaries on the foreign field.

+ Centre International Réformé John Knox, Secrétariat, 27, chemin des Crêts de Pregny, 1218 Grand-Saconnex / Ge - Suisse

[ 8 ]
The Slave Trade Is Expanding

Two hundred years after William Wilberforce moved the British to make it illegal; the slave trade is still going on, bigger than ever—estimated at around 27 million people worldwide. The practice is fueled by those with money taking advantage of people who are poor in order to obtain free labor or sexual favors. Slave holders operate in American neighborhoods without local people even realizing it. Mission Frontiers provides suggestions and resources for learning about the modern slave trade and how to combat the evil. This issue is available online at Mission Frontiers.

+ Rick Wood, 1605 E. Elizabeth St.. Pasadena CA 91104

[ 9 ]
Billy Graham Does Jonathan Edwards

In the fall of 1949, at the height of his famous Los Angeles "Canvas Cathedral" Crusade, Billy Graham preached Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God. That night, America's most famous sermon was preached by the man who was to become America's most famous evangelist. The Jonathan Edwards Center has worked with the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and the Billy Graham Center to secure permission to produce a digital exhibit on this remarkable event. The public can hear selections of the recording of Billy Graham's rendition of Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God. The presentation is exclusively available for a limited time in streaming audio on the Jonathan Edwards Center website.

+ Jonathan Edwards Center, Yale Divinity School, 409 Prospect St., New Haven, CT 06511-2169

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

18 July 2007

[ 1 ] French Camp Transfers to ARP Synod
[ 2 ]
Kishwaukee Departs PC(USA) for Evangelical Presbyterians
[ 3 ] Glasite Meeting House Seeking New Congregation
[ 4 ] Adolph Eichmann’s Demonic Spirit Lives On
[ 5 ]
Carolina Church Obtains Restraining Order
[ 6 ] Malawi Declares Fiday a Holiday for Muslims
[ 7 ] Homosexuality Dominates DRC[SA] Synod
[ 8 ] Daniel Don-un Lee
[ 9 ] Tennessee Gets More Light in Nashville

[ 1 ] French Camp Transfers to ARP Synod

Mississippi Valley Presbytery officially welcomed French Camp Presbyterian Church into the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church at a service on 8 July. The Mississippi church which was formerly in the Presbyterian Church (USA) is closely identified with French Camp Academy. About 450 persons were present for the service at the historic church.

FCPC was established on 4 August 1849 as the Olney Presbyterian Church, at a location about three miles north of the present community. Rev. Sam Patterson, president of French Camp Academy from 1950 – 1967, was a founding father of Reformed Theological Seminary. Through Patterson’s leadership, the congregation served as an early sponsor of the Bible Institute which became RTS.

+ French Camp Presbyterian Church, 323 School Street, French Camp, Mississippi 39745 (662) 547-6670 For more information see
French Camp

[ 2 ] Kishwaukee Departs PC(USA) for Evangelical Presbyterians

The Kishwaukee Community Presbyterian Church of Stillman Valley voted 24 June to withdraw from Blackhawk Presbytery and enter the Evangelical Presbyterian Church. The 163-year-old congregation will take 400 members with it into the more conservative body. On John Calvin’s birthday, 10 July, the presbytery received the request and authorized a team to work out the details.

+ Kishwaukee Community Presbyterian Church, 8195 Kishwaukee Rd., (815)965-1940 For more information see
Kishwaukee Community

+ Blackhawk Presbytery. PO Box 157, Oregon IL 61061 (815) 732-3258

[ 3]
Glasite Meeting House Seeking New Congregation

Scotland’s Glasite movement contributed to Alexander Campbell’s development of the Restoration Movement in America, spawning a spectrum ranging from the United Church of Christ through the Churches of Christ (Non Instrumental) to the Latter Day Saints. John Glass departed the Church of Scotland to establish his own ministry in Dundee in 1725.

The Edinburgh meeting house is one of the most impressive of some 30 erected across Scotland. According to reports in The Scotsman, the chapel, designed by renowned Edinburgh architect Alexander Black, was the city base for the Glasite sect and remained in use for around 150 years until the late 1980s. At that time the local body declined to the point it could no longer maintain the building and it was conveyed to an historical trust.

“With a spectacular glazed dome in the roof, the room remains almost exactly as it would have looked in Victorian times - with original wooden box pews, blind arched walls and a large pulpit, designed by David Bryce in 1873,” noted Jane Bradley of The Scotsman.

More recently the building has been occupied by the Free Church of Scotland (Continuing). When a six-month repair process became necessary, the congregation moved to more satisfactory facilities and consequently the building is seeking an appropriate new occupant.

Glasite congregations opposed the established church and never developed a ministry in the full Presbyterian style. Glas died in 1773 aged 78 and was buried in Dundee. Son-in-law Robert Sandeman developed the movement in England and America. While Glas dissented from the Westminster standard on the spiritual nature of the church and the function of the civil magistrate, Sandeman added a distinctive doctrine as to the nature of faith which is recorded stated on his tombstone: "That the bare death of Jesus Christ without a thought or deed on the part of man, is sufficient to present the chief of sinners spotless before God."

+ Architectural Heritage Society of Scotland, Glasite Meeting House, 33 Barony Street, Edinburgh EH3 6NX For more information consult

[4 ] Adolph Eichmann’s Demonic Spirit Lives On

On the 18 July 2007 broadcast of Faith and Action Live, F&A President Rob Schenck reported on the recent prayer vigil by hundreds of young people in Wichita, Kansas at the facilities of abortionist Dr. George Tiller who is known as “Tiller the Killer” for his specialty of aborting late term babies.

Schenck described Tiller’s so-called women’s health clinic as “America’s Auschwitz,” describing how the clinic's crematory chimney emits black smoke into the surrounding air containing the ashes of aborted babies.

Schenck additionally described how Tiller is now skirting the recent US Supreme Court decision outlawing partial birth abortion by injecting fetal poisons like Digoxin into the late-term unborn child who is then delivered dead a few days after the poison has had time to kill the baby.

+ Faith and Action in the Nations Capital, 109 Second St. NE, Washington, DC 20002 For more information see

[ 5 ]
Carolina Church Obtains Restraining Order

A congregation in western North Carolina has been granted a temporary restraining order that prevents the presbytery or the Presbyterian Church (USA) from seizing control of the congregation's property and assets. The order, signed 2 July by Judicial District 29A Superior Court Judge James Baker, will remain in effect pending a hearing to determine if First Presbyterian Church in Marion ownes its property. The Presbytery of Western North Carolina and the PCUSA are also making claims.

Rev. Mr. Jim Wilken, pastor of the church, referred all questions to the congregation's attorney, Stephen Little. Barbara (Bobbi) White, general presbyter of the Presbytery of Western North Carolina, said, "We were shocked and saddened. Without any discussion or notice, we were served with the TRO and complaint and a couple inches of paper" supporting those legal documents.

"We did invite the pastor and session to come before the presbytery's committee on ministry or the presbytery council," she said, "just to help us understand their thinking behind this action and to try to bring reconciliation and to listen to their concerns. They refused to come on the advice of their legal counsel."

+ First Presbyterian Church, 79 Academy St., Marion, North Carolina 28752 (828) 652-5717

Malawi Declares Friday a Holiday for Muslims

Malawi has become the first country in southern Africa to grant Muslims a holiday on Fridays, their day of worship. However, the move has been snubbed by the Muslim Association of Malawi, which has criticised President Bingu wa Mutharika for declaring the day a holiday without consulting Muslims.

"As Muslims, we don't need a full holiday on Fridays," the association's secretary general, Imran Shareef, told the local media after Mutharika's declaration. "We only need two hours for our prayers, and then we can revert to our toil. We would have liked it if the president declared the traditional Muslim festival of Eid-ul-Quarban and the day for the birth of Muhammad as holidays."

Speaking at celebrations marking the country's independence on 6 July, Mutharika declared Friday afternoons a holiday for all Muslims working in the civil service, in order to allow them to attend prayers held at mosques. But Muslims have said the president's gesture has raised more questions than answers, and that these could have been cleared up if the president had consulted the Muslim community. An estimated 12.8 percent of Malawi’s 13.6 million people are Muslim.

+ Ecumenical News International, PO Box 2100, CH - 1211 Geneva 2 Switzerland

[ 7 ]
Homosexuality Dominates DRC[SA] Synod

The General Synod of the Dutch Reformed Church (South Africa) faced major issues in church unification, land reform, baptism (and re-baptism), crime and violence, pastoral education. However, the issue that received the most attention in their four-day meeting, 4-7 June, was the report about homosexual members and ministers.

In 2004, the last full General Synod created a high-level task force asking it to reevaluate the church’s policy on homosexual members. That synod also apologized to its gay members and their families who were wounded by the church’s judgments and exclusion. Still, this task force did not come with a clear resolution, but a sharply divided report.

Besides the report, this synod also had a case to deal with. One of its ministers, Laurie Gaum, appealed his suspension to synod. The church had removed Gaum from office on grounds of homosexual conduct. In addition, 500 individuals, most of them members, circulated an open letter, urging synod to receive its gay members as full members. There were five publications in different media, some from committee members themselves, and three of these were given to all synod delegates.

In an executive session, the synod also restored the ministerial credentials of Laurie Gaum, mainly on procedural grounds. In the course of the various judgments and appeals, the charges had been altered. The synod further declared that since Gaum had been cleared of this charge, he could not be retried for the same incident. The synod’s decision also avoided what might have been a lengthy legal battle in civil courts, which Gaum was prepared to wage. Gaum now faces a decision whether to remain a minister, since he has so far declined to pledge celibacy in homosexual relationships.

+ REC Secretariat, 2050 Breton Rd, SE, Suite 102, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49546. (616) 949-2910

Daniel Don-un Lee

Rev. Mr. Daniel Dong-un Lee, a Presbyterian Church (USA) missionary to Japan for nine years, died 3 July. Rev. Lee with his wife, Young Sook Lee, served as Mission Co-worker of PC(USA) with the United Church of Christ in Japan for nine years. The first totally blind person to serve as a PC(USA) missionary, Lee lost his eyesight during the Korean War, where he served as an Army officer.

+ Presbyterian Church (USA) 100 Witherspoon Street, Louisville, KY 40202
(888) 728-7228

[ 9 ]
Tennessee Gets More Light in Nashville

The National Board of Directors of More Light Presbyterians announced that the Session of Woodland Presbyterian Church, Nashville, Tennessee has recently voted to affiliate, as a More Light Presbyterian Church.

Woodland Presbyterian Church joins its sister congregation across town, Second Presbyterian Church, Nashville, as the second More Light Presbyterian Church in Nashville. Woodland also has had a significant presence at both the Nashville Pride Festival and the Nashville CARES AIDS Walk in past years.

Woodland offers space for Community IMPACT!, a non-profit organization working with inner-city high school students and the Linden Corner School, a Waldorf educational program for young children. In July of 2003, Woodland began a five-year commitment to share its building with The Village Church, an Afro-centric Presbyterian congregation organized in 1998 at the Martha O'Bryan Center.

+ Woodland Presbyterian Church, 211 N 11th St., Nashville, Tennessee 37206
(615) 227-2025 - For more information see

Thursday, July 12, 2007

11 July 2007

Headlines - Wednesday, July 11, 2007

[1] Dr. Harold O.J. Brown
[2] Mr. Robert C. Cannada Sr.
[3] Rome and Geneva Remain at Odds
[4] RP Minister Rallies 100,000 in Prayer

1. Dr. Harold O.J. Brown

Dr. Harold O.J. Brown passed away 8 July, 2007. His funeral will be conducted 12 July at Springs Presbyterian Church.

A memorial service will be held in Charlotte on Saturday, 28 July at 2:00 pm, at Carmel Presbyterian Church, across the street from the Reformed Theological Seminary Charlotte campus.

Accommodations will be available at the South Park Courtyard by Marriott(, located at 6023 Park South Drive, (704) 552-7333 (rooms cost $109 or US$119/night; if you are looking for less expensive accommodations, please contact the RTS Admissions office, (704) 688-4220, for a list of other local hotels).

Dr. Harold O. J. Brown earned four degrees from Harvard University and Harvard Divinity School. He also studied at the University of Marburg, Germany, and the University of Vienna, Austria, and taught courses in Basel, Switzerland, and Yeotmal, India. With former United States Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, M.D., Brown co-founded the Christian Action Council. At the time of his death, Brown was the director of the Center on Religion and Society at the Rockford Institute and taught in the International Seminar on Jurisprudence and Human Rights in Strasbourg, France.

Brown's published works include The Protest of a Troubled Protestant (1969), Christianity and the Class Struggle (1970), Death Before Birth (1977), The Reconstruction of the Republic (1977), Heresies: The Image of Christ in the Mirror of Heresy and Orthodoxy from the Apostles to the Present (1984), and Sensate Culture (1996).

+ Springs Presbyterian Church, 1060 West Withlacoochee Trail, Dunellon, Florida (352) 489 8992

For more information, consult Christianity Today.

2. Mr. Robert C. Cannada Sr.

Robert C. Cannada, Sr., died 5 July 2007, after an illness of five months. Born in Edwards, Mississippi, 29 July 1920, Cannada was an elder for 50 years at First Presbyterian Church, in Jackson, a founder and former Board chairman for 25 years of Reformed Theological Seminary, a founder and former Managing Partner for 25 years at the law firm of Butler, Snow, O’Mara, Stevens, and Cannada, and an officer in the Navy and veteran of World War II and of the Korean War.

+ Reformed Theological Seminary (5422 Clinton Blvd, Jackson, MS 39211

For more information, consult Butler, Snow, O’Mara, Stevens & Cannada.

3. Rome and Geneva Remain at Odds

A new document authorized by Pope Benedict XVI restating Roman Catholic views that Protestant denominations are not churches "in the proper sense" has been criticized as setting back the quest for Christian unity. "An exclusive claim that identifies the Roman Catholic Church as the one church of Jesus Christ, as we read in the statement ... goes against the spirit of our Christian calling towards oneness in Christ," said the Rev. Setri Nyomi, general secretary of the Geneva-based World Alliance of Reformed Churches. The alliance groups 214 churches with roots in the 16th Century Protestant Reformation.

The document says that Protestant denominations of the Reformation "have not preserved the genuine and integral substance of the Eucharistic mystery [and] cannot, according to Catholic doctrine, be called 'Churches' in the proper sense".

+ Ecumenical News International, PO Box 2100, CH - 1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland

4 RP Minister Rallies 100,000 in Prayer

Over 100,000 young people came from all over the nation to Nashville, Tennessee, on 9 July to pray and seek God for revival. The event, sponsored by The Call, focused on prayer and repentance for the sins of the nation.

"We've seen 40 million abortions in America, and I ask for forgiveness," said Kansas Senator and presidential hopeful Sam Brownback, who addressed the packed stadium, home to the Tennessee Titans football team.

Leaders included endy Wright, President of Concerned Women For America, Rev. Rob Schenk, Director of the National Clergy Council, Eric Wittington, National Director of Rock for Life, and Rev. Pat Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition in Washington, DC, and member of the original Operation Rescue leadership team during the historic 1991 Summer of Mercy.

+ Operation Rescue, PO Box 782888, Wichita, KS 67278-2888

+ Faith and Action

For more information, consult WKRN Nashville