Wednesday, June 20, 2012

20 June 2012

Presbyterians Week Headlines

[1] ARPTalk Reports on 208th Synod of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church

[2] URCNA Synod Nyack 2012 Meets 12-15 June

[3] St. George's Tron Church of Glasgow, Scotland, Leaves Kirk over the Issue of Homosexual Clergy

[4] Headlines from

[5] Headlines from Christian Concern

Headlines from The Christian Institute

Raging Heathen and Vain Imagining

The Religion of Peace


[1] ARPTalk Reports on 208th Synod of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church

In ARPTalk Issue #61, editor the Rev. Dr. Chuck Wilson reports on the 208th synod meeting of the
Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church (ARP), which met 5-7 June 2012 at the Bonclarken Conference Center in East Flat Rock, North Carolina.

Dr. Wilson titles the issue “I’ve Fallen and I Can’t Get Up” after the tag line in the Lifeline television commercial suggested to the ARPTalk editor by a friend, and characterizes the meeting with the following five subtitles:

     1) “June 2010 Revisited but Worse”;
     2) “Parade of Fools”;
     3) “The Night of the Boy Who Cried Wolf”;
     4) “An Exercise in Platitudinous Nonsense”; and
     5) ([the ARPTalk editor’s] favorite) “Ugh Again!”

After noting the election of Canadian pastor Rev. Jeff Kingswood as ARP Moderator-Elect, Dr. Wilson addresses the 5 June evening worship service where outgoing ARP Moderator Andy Putnam preached a sermon entitled “Wolves,” stating:

“Sadly, Mr. Putnam used the lectern as a partisan bully pulpit as he demonstrated that he was thin skinned and lacked the humility to deal with criticisms forthrightly. Pity, the text has great potential, and some of what he said was appropriate.

“Now, if Mr. Putnam wants to call the Editor of ARPTalk a “wolf,” let him have at it. The Editor is not offended. “Wolf” is one of the nicer things the Editor is called. On the two Erskine alums’ Facebook sites, the Editor is referred to as “the one whose name must not be spoken.” Also, if Mr. Putnam wants to charge the Editor with “slander,” let him remember that pointing out the obvious, no matter how unpleasant to him or the reader, is not slander. Somehow, Mr. Putnam does not seem to understand that his actions on the Erskine board of trustees (EBOT) are open to criticism – even harsh criticism, for what he has done involves all of us in the ARP Church. Therefore,

“1) Is it the work of a “wolf” or “slander” for the Editor and others to point out that Mr. Putnam’s actions on the EBOT’s committee that revised the EBOT’s bylaws resulted in a distancing of Erskine from the ARP Church rather than a drawing of Erskine back to the ARP Church?

“2) Is it the work of a “wolf” or “slander” for the Editor and others to remind Mr. Putnam that he was one of the people who helped frame the 2011 Synod’s request to Erskine asking that our language for trustee removal be written into the charter/bylaws, and he agreed such was not only possible but needed?

“3) Is it the work of a “wolf” or “slander” for the Editor and others to remind Mr. Putnam that he was a member of the EBOT’s ad hoc committee that reported it was impossible for Synod’s request to be accomplished?

“4) Is it the work of a “wolf” or “slander” for the Editor and others to remind Mr. Putnam that the Minority Report demonstrated that the ad hoc committee’s report, which he signed off on, was incorrect if not a falsification of facts?

“5) Is it the work of a “wolf” or “slander” for the Editor and others to remind Mr. Putnam that his actions in this matter show as a member of the EBOT, he demonstrates failure of “competence,” failure of “knowledge,” and failure of “fiduciary responsibility” on behalf of Erskine? After all, is he not party to a report that has caused the integrity of the EBOT to be questioned?

“6) Is it the work of a “wolf” or “slander” for the Editor and others to remind Mr. Putnam that his actions in this matter have shown that as a member of the EBOT he has lead many of us in the ARP Church to question his “competence,” “knowledge,” and “fiduciary responsibility” to the ARP Church?

“7) Finally, is it the work of a “wolf” or “slander” for the Editor and others to say they feel Mr. Putnam, in his role as the Moderator of General Synod, brought not the church together but further divided us? Mr. Putnam asked at Synod, “Why wasn’t I asked to sign the Minority Report?” Mr. Putnam, could it be that you were not trusted? Well, about half of the members of the house you moderated feel that, in the matters pertaining to Erskine, you have not lead or represented us wisely and you cannot be trusted. And, by the way, the way many of us feel about you, is this not how you felt about Dr. Dick deWitt’s leadership as Moderator? Now, we do not know your motives; however, whatever they are, we know what has been done. As unpleasant as it is, this is the unvarnished truth.”

Dr. Wilson reports on several other matters before the ARP 218th Synod, including approval of the recommended 2012 funding for Erskine before reporting:

“For the second time in three years, the annual meeting of General Synod came to a stand still because of conflict over Erskine. For the second time in three years, delegates left Bonclarken tired and disgusted over the Erskine conflict before the adjournment of synod. A quorum could not be found on Thursday evening to finish the business of the ARP Church. We left with seventeen items on the table.”

Dr. Wilson described the final matter of synod business on 7 June as a passionate and sincere speech given by
ARP First Presbytery pastor the Rev. Dean Turbeville, who with tears in his eyes said the following:

“Mr. Moderator, if I may have a moment of personal privilege. After almost forty years of attempted reforms at Erskine College, Synod has once again shown its limitless patience with its own rebellious agency. This is God’s will. Whether for the blessing or the discipline of our body, it is God’s will; I accept that.

“Now I would address only those men of tender conscience for whom the use of church tithes to pay for the salaries of college professors who would laugh at our position on Adam and Eve, professors who still teach our covenant children an unvarnished Darwinism in our biology department, administrators who cheered the church elders who took the Bride of Christ before civil court judges, and a seminary professor who believes the Bible is not the objective Word of God – I speak to those men of tender conscience who remember that brave covenanter martyrs once stood against the intrusion of civil power into the life of the church, and who now cannot fathom the unqualified deference our brethren pay to hostile secular accrediting agencies – to you dear men of tender conscience, I urge you first of all to pray for our denomination this year, and to do all that you can in your local church to see that congregational monies are sent by designation to those agencies which still honor the Gospel, and that you do all you can to end undesignated giving to the Denominational Ministry Fund.

“Thank you.”

Dr. Wilson concluded his synod meeting report with a description of the Strategic Planning Committee Report before stating:

“Perhaps there is a Biblical analogy. For all our good “evangelical theological speak,” we are a sinful and disobedient people. Like ancient Israel, we have Achans in our camp who in their tents are cherishing the idols of Erskine. Therefore, even little Ai defeats us. God has turned our wisdom into foolishness. Instead of the joy of obedience, He has given us fogginess of mind. The reason we retreat before small enemies is because the judgment of God is upon us.”

[The Presbyterians Week editor commends the entirety of Dr. Wilson’s ARPTalk Issue #61 as an object lesson on the results of scores of years of carnal expediency and pragmatism substituting for biblical principle, and even more sadly - as an application of Jeremiah 6:13-15: “For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. They have healed also the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall: at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith the Lord.”]

+ ARPTalk Blog, 864-882-6337,

Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church, 1 Cleveland Street Suite 110, Greenville, South Carolina, 29601, 864-232-8297, Fax: 864-271-3729

ARP First Presbytery, c/o Rev. Robert C. Wilson, D.Min., 4784 Styers Ferry Road, Winston-Salem, North Carolina 27104, 336-624-9529

[2] URCNA Synod Nyack 2012 Meets 12-15 June

Synod Nyack 2012 of the United Reformed Churches in North America, consisting of 197 delegates from 104 various churches, met 12-15 June at Nyack College in Nyack, New York.

On 12 June, fraternal addresses were delivered to the delegates from representatives of the
Free Church of Scotland (Continuing) and the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America (RPCNA).

On 13 June, fraternal addresses were received from delegates and observers of the
Reformed Church in the United States (RCUS), the Canadian Reformed Churches, the Eglise Reformee du Quebec, and the United Reformed Church in Congo. In addition, written greetings were received from the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA). After extensive deliberation, Synod Nyack 2012 voted to enter into ecclesiastical fellowship with the RPCNA.

Additionally on 13 June, the delegates addressed matters relating to theological education, forms for worship, synodical regulations, fraternal interaction, and musical matters. Synod Nyack 2012 overwhelmingly accepted the invitation of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church to work together in their respective tasks of producing updated songbooks for their respective federation/denomination. Synod Nyack 2012 also encouraged the churches to consider the need of funds for the future publication of an URCNA Psalter Hymnal. As the night hours passed, Synod Nyack 2012 turned its attention to two overtures addressing the proposed Psalter Hymnal. As a result, Synod Nyack 2012 directed the Psalter Hymnal committee to pay attention to “unrest and concern” in connection to gender-neutral language, the use of the name ‘Jehovah’ and various word changes in traditional hymns.

On 14 June the Synod Nyack 2012 delegates dealt with financial matters including matters regarding the legal transfer of funds from
Canada to charitable causes within the United States given current Canadian legislation, and acknowledged that the Board of the URCNA Corporation (Canada) can no longer function as a body for collecting and distributing funds to U.S. causes.

Additionally on 14 June, fraternal addresses from delegates and observers from the Orthodox Presbyterian Church (OPC), the
Heritage Reformed Churches (HRC), the Free Reformed Churches of North America, the Calvinist Reformed Church in Indonesia and the Reformed Churches in the Netherlands (Liberated) were received by the Synod Nyack 2012 delegates.

On 15 June, the Synod Nyack 2012 delegates received an address from the fraternal delegate of the
Reformed Churches of New Zealand (RCNZ), and later that afternoon heard a report from the Committee for Ecumenical Contact with Churches Abroad (CECCA). The synod delegates “with joy” affirmed its ecumenical relations with numerous foreign denominations and federations.

Concluding matters for Synod Nyack 2012 included deliberation on the processing of appeals, which concluded with “earnest calling upon [the] God of reconciliation.” Synod Nyack 2012 later adopted a budget “giving the federation “askings” equaling approximately [US]$13.10 per family. Synod Nyack 2012 delegates additionally “set the next meeting of Synod, to be convened by Trinity URC
Visalia, California, for mid-June in 2014, DV.”

+ United Reformed Churches in North America, c/o the Rev. Bradd Nymeyer, 227 1st Avenue Southeast, Sioux Center, Iowa 51250, 712-722-1965,

+ Free Church of Scotland (Continuing), Rev. John MacLeod, Free Church Manse, Portmahomack, Ross-shire, Scotland,

+ Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America (RPCNA), 7408 Penn Avenue, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15208, 412-731-1177, Fax: 412-731-8861

Reformed Church in the United States, Post Office Box 486, Eureka, South Dakota 57437

+ Canadian Reformed Churches,

+ Eglise Reformee du Quebec,

+ United Reformed Church in Congo, 4, Avenue LIsala, Quartier Masina Petro-Congo, Commune de Masina, Kinshasa, DR
Congo, 00243-9973-15323,

Presbyterian Church in America, 1700 North Brown Road, Suite 105, Lawrenceville, Georgia 30043, 678-825-1000, Fax: 678-825-1001,

The Orthodox Presbyterian Church, 607 North Easton Road, Building E, Box P, Willow Grove, Pennsylvania 19090, 215-830-0900, Fax: 215-830-0350

Heritage Reformed Churches,

Free Reformed Churches of North America, c/o Free Reformed Publications, Post Office Box 1094, Mitchell, Ontario, Canada N0K 1N0, 519-348-0020

+ Calvinist Reformed Churches in Indonesia, c/o the Rev. Yonson G. Dethan, Tromol Pos 08, Kupang - NTT 85361,
Indonesia, 001-62-380-829172,

+ Reformed Churches of New Zealand,

+ Reformed Churches in the Netherlands (Liberated) (GKV), Postbus 770, 3800 AT Amersfoort, Netherlands,

[3] St. George's Tron Church of Glasgow, Scotland, Leaves Kirk over the Issue of Homosexual Clergy

A 14 June 2012 BBC article titled “Glasgow Kirk Quits Church of Scotland over Gay Clergy Row” reports that after more than one year of thought and prayer, St. George’s Tron Church (Church of Scotland) on 11 June 2012 formerly seceded from the Church of Scotland (COS) over the issue of the acceptance of homosexual clergy in the COS provided they had declared their homosexuality and were ordained before 2009. The congregation believes that this decision "has marginalised the bible".

A 16 June 2012 The Herald article titled “Church in Split to be Taken to Court” reports that St. George’s Tron Church will most likely be taken to court by the COS over church property ownership issues and donations to the COS's administrative headquarters. The church recently had a UK£3 million refurbishment, with members of the congregation raising most of the money for the project. St. George’s Tron Church raises much of its UK£500,000 annual income.

+ BBC, 201 Wood Lane, London W12 7TS, England, Fax: 020-8008-2398

+ The Herald, 200 Renfield Street, Glasgow, Scotland G2 3QB, 0141- 302-7000, Fax: 0141-302-7117,

+ Church of Scotland, 121 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 4YN, Scotland, 0131-225-5722

[4] Headlines from headlines of the past week include the following articles:

-- Bye Bye Cheerios?: General Mills Announces Support for Gay ‘Marriage’

-- Quebec Announces It Is Exploring Ways To Allow Euthanasia Despite Federal Law

-- British Colombia Supreme Court Strikes Down Canada’s Ban on Assisted Suicide

-- Another Ontario Public School Board Bans Gideon Bibles

-- Ontario Passes Bill Adding ‘Gender Identity,’ ‘Gender Expression’ To Human Rights Code

-- Gruesome Photos of Forced Abortion in China Confirmed Authentic: Chinese Express Outrage

-- Infanticide and Bestiality Advocate Given Australia’s Highest Civic Award

+, Incorporated, 4 Family Life Lane, Front Royal,
Virginia 22630, 888-678-6008, Contact Page

[5] Headlines from Christian Concern

Christian Concern headlines of the past week include the following articles:

-- Christian General Practitioner Found Guilty of ‘Malpractice’ for Sharing His Faith

-- Hundreds of Canadians Have Faced Legal Proceedings over Same-Sex Marriage

-- Schools May Be Forced to Promote Same-Sex Marriage, Warns Leading Queen’s Counsel

+ Christian Concern, 70 Wimpole Street, London W1G 8AX, England, 020 7935 1488, Contact Page

Headlines from The Christian Institute

The Christian Institute’s headlines of the past week include the following articles:

-- Church of England: Same-Sex Marriage Is ‘Worst Threat for 500 Years’

-- Public Order Act Hampering Freedom, Says Guardian Writer

-- British Medical Journal Wants Doctors to Go Soft on Assisted Suicide

+ The Christian Institute, Wilberforce House, 4 Park Road, Gosforth Business Park, Newcastle upon Tyne NE12 8DG, England, 44-0-191-281-5664, Fax: 44-0-191-281-4272,

Raging Heathen and Vain Imagining

Articles from the past week regarding kings and rulers setting themselves against the LORD and against his anointed:

-- Defense Department Yanks Bibles with Military Service Insignias from Shelves

-- U.S. President Obama Celebrates Anti-Police Riot Started at Mafia-Owned Bar for Transvestites

-- U.S. President Obama: The Biggest Government Spender in World History

-- March of the Drones: Map Reveals Sixty-Six Military Bases For Unmanned Aircraft on American Soil... And Twenty-Two More on the Way

-- U.S. President Obama's Propaganda Power Play: Homeland Security-Funded Study on "Tea Party Terrorism"

Focus on the Family, Colorado Springs, Colorado  80995, 800-232-6459

+, 325 South Patrick Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314, 877-267-6397,

+, 90 5th Avenue, New York, New York 10011, 212-366-8900,

+ The Daily Mail, Northcliffe House, 2 Derry Street, London W8 5TT, England, 020-7938-6000,

+ Atlas Shrugs,

The Religion of Peace

Articles from the past week about the religion of peace:

-- Islamists Bomb Three Churches in Kaduna State, Nigeria

-- U.S. National Public Radio Backs Hamas

-- Muslims Desecrate WWII Servicemen Graves in Libya Again

-- Muslims in America: "Sharia is Coming, Baby!"

-- U.S. Congressional Leaders Call for Investigations of Muslim Brotherhood Infiltration of the U.S. Government

-- New Jersey Muslim indicted for Murder that was Initially Blamed on "Islamophobia"

-- Thomas More Law Center Urges Michigan Attorney General to Investigate “Allegations of Corruption” in Sale of Farmington Hills, Michigan, Elementary School to the Islamic Cultural Association

+ Compass Direct News Service, Post Office Box 27250, Santa Ana, California 92799, 949-862-0304, Fax: 949-752-6536,

+ Atlas Shrugs,

+ Detroit News, 615 West Lafayette Boulevard,
Detroit, Michigan 48220, 313-222-2300, Fax: 313-496-5400,