Amid discussion that ranged from amicable to acrimonious on Monday, the Health Issues Committee of the 219th General Assembly (2010) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) worked through its business of HIV testing, violence against pregnant women, coerced abortions and being an HIV- and AIDS-competent denomination.
The majority of the debate centered on the overture, “Making a Statement Regarding Violence against Pregnant Women.”
The 55 members of the 219th General Assembly Committee on Theological Issues and Institutions gathered Monday for an overview of their work: considering the adoption of two confessional statements; approving the staff, trustees, and covenants for theological institutions and retreat centers; and amending sections of the Directory for Worship.
The opening worship service at the 219th General Assembly (2010) was a liturgical tapestry woven together with music, banners, lights, dance, rain sticks, streamers, words, prayers, puppets and art.
“Authoritative interpretation” was the phrase of the day Monday in deliberations by the 219th General Assembly Church Polity Committee, which dispensed with a dozen recommendations before bogging down because of the most troublesome word of the day: trust.
Item 05-21 is the Advisory Committee on the Constitution’s (ACC) answer to questions posed by the Presbytery of St. Augustine seeking an authoritative interpretation about authoritative interpretations by General Assembly sessions as opposed to those by the General Assembly Permanent Judicial Commission (GAPJC). The committee decided to strike part of the ACC’s authoritative interpretation for presentation to the full assembly.
Honoring the Presbyterian way of being open to divergent voices, Presbyterians for Middle East Peace sponsored a Sunday breakfast to share alternate views on the Middle East Study Committee (MESC) report.
“Just because you start a Facebook page doesn’t mean young people will come to your church,” outgoing General Assembly Moderator the Rev. Bruce Reyes-Chow told Presbyterians attending the GA Media Luncheon on Monday. The lunch was cosponsored by Presbyterian Media Mission and the Church Restoration Group.
The Church Orders and Ministry Committee of the 219th General Assembly heard many personal stories surrounding ordination standards Monday, both from overture advocates and during the open hearings.
A measure to “protest the blatant disregard for the sanctity of our Lord’s name in motion pictures and public broadcast by the entertainment industry” was approved Monday by the 219th General Assembly Committee on Social Justice Issues: Promotion of Social Righteousness.
The committee recommended the slightly modified overture after three hours of debate by a vote of 41-9 with two abstentions.
A recommendation for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) to establish financial support for a coastal wetlands education center in south Louisiana was one of several items approved Monday by the 219th General Assembly Committee on Social Justice Issues: the Exhibition of the Kingdom of Heaven to the World.
The measure, sponsored by South Louisiana Presbytery, passed unanimously after a lengthy discussion on the exact amount of funding being requested. A figure of $111,700 was included in the recommendation.
A willing but wary 219th General Assembly Committee on Middle Governing Body Issues has recommended creation of a Middle Governing Body Commission to act on the requests of presbyteries and synods “to divide, unite or otherwise combine” them during the next two years.