In Spirit and Truth seeks to encourage discussion and deeper consideration of representation issues in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). It is hoped entries will prompt reflection and dialogue on aspects of expanding representation and supporting full participation in the PCUSA, especially at the assembly and mid council levels.
This blog will occasionally feature content written by one of the fifteen members of the General Assembly Committee on Representation, who are teaching and ruling elders from across the country, as well as links and articles of particular interest. The ministries of advising, consulting, advocating, reviewing and recommending are vital to the life of the whole Body of Christ. Committees on Representation and/or their functions exists at all councils above session so from time to time we may highlight activities and insights from sister committees on representation at lower councils throughout the church.
Any views or opinions presented in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. or the General Assembly Committee on Representation.
Author/Facilitator Molly Casteel is an Assistant Stated Clerk and the Coordinator for Representation, Inclusiveness and Ruling Elder Training in the Office of the General Assembly. She is a teaching elder (a.k.a. Minister of Word and Sacrament) in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and a graduate of Princeton Theological Seminary.
Have you ever wondered what participation looks like in real time at General Assembly? Are you attending GA221 in Detroit? Do you enjoy seeing the church do its work in committee?
We are recruiting observers of committee business during the 221st General Assembly (2014). We've learned that we need a full diversity and representation in the observers - everyone sees and hears the action before them a little differently. The more observers, the better picture we get of what's happening in participation.
It is said that a group working in committee is like making sausage. We are looking for ...
Presbyterians love to abbreviate and use acronyms as we navigate life in councils and in relationship. This tendency can obfuscate communication. Below I humbly offer a simple list of common acronyms used during General Assembly meetings which may be helpful. If you have more to add or acronyms that you’d like to have defined – simply comment and I’ll add more.
The main roles of participants of any assembly are:
Elected by presbyteries, teaching elders (aka, Ministers of Word and Sacrament), have voice and vote in committee meetings as well as any business meeting of ...
In just a few weeks, Commissioners and Advisory Delegates from all across the US and Puerto Rico will gather in Detroit for the 221st General Assembly (2014). Presbyteries determine who most of the folks are who will discern the will of the Living God for the PCUSA making decisions large and small. Many are already praying for these 800+ folks who are busy preparing for the work of the 14 assembly committees and attending to the wider business before the larger body. I'll focus on Teaching Elder Commissioners in this first post.
In looking at the chosen ...
I did not know that it was not there. For over 35 years of reading the Bible I thought it was there. And so when I looked for it I could not find it. The Book of Job spoke about his life, about his health, about his conversations with God, and about all the things he received and developed afterwards.
We can read in Job 42: 12-17 (NIV)
The Lord blessed the latter part of Job’s life more than the former part. He had fourteen thousand sheep, six thousand camels, a thousand yoke of oxen and a thousand donkeys ...
A visitor at this meeting, I was given privilege of the floor to advise the Synod commissioners about language in soon-to-be adopted Synod by-laws about the Committee on Representation.
Welcome to In Spirit and Truth, a new blog from the 16-member, General Assembly Committee on Representation (GACOR) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).