In more than two hours of debate, commissioners on the 219th General Assembly Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations Committee decided not to recommend that the Assembly accept the paper “Christians and Jews: People of God.”
The 219th General Assembly Middle East Peacemaking Issues Committee voted to send to the full Assembly a report from the Mission Responsibility Through Investment (MRTI) committee, which recommends the denouncement of actions by Peoria, Ill.-based Caterpillar Inc.
Meeting for a full day Monday, the Form of Government Revision Committee stood behind the flexibility within the proposed revision to the Form of Government, rejecting those overtures and amendments that would place specific organizations and structures within the document.
The 219th General Assembly Committee on Civil Union and Marriage Issues voted 47-8-2 Monday to approve a report that urges Presbyterians to further study the issues and stay in covenant with each other while they do so.
Splish-splash! Water will run throughout the Assembly’s daily worship services, Tuesday through Saturday at 8:30 a.m., based on the Assembly theme from John 7:38: “Out of the believer’s heart shall flow rivers of living water.”
The 219th General Assembly (2010) Mission Coordination Committee began its work on Monday by tackling the first of several funding items.
By a 43-10 vote, the committee endorsed a recommendation from the General Assembly Mission Council (GAMC) to end on Dec. 31, 2013, the practice of Mission Partnership Funds – monies distributed by the General Assembly to synods for redistribution to presbyteries.
"Lucy in the sky with diamonds" echoed down the hall from Committee 15 early Monday morning at the 219th General Assembly (2010). Presbyterians passing by peaked into the room and a few said, “I wish I was in that group!” The 55 members gathered in the room to consider overtures and reports regarding church growth, Christian education and the Presbyterian Investment & Loan Program, Inc.
“Yes, he is one of the Niebuhr Niebuhrs,” said Deborah Block, co-moderator of the Covenant Network, as she introduced Gustav Niebuhr, featured speaker at the CovNet Luncheon Monday as part of the 219th General Assembly (2010).
Niebuhr began his talk, “Tolerance is a Floor, Not a Ceiling,” by recalling the time he was covering two advocacy groups on opposite sides of a divisive issue at a previous General Assembly. “What was remarkable was not that they disagreed with each other, but that both displayed a noteworthy calm – neither spoke unpleasantly about the other. Each group accorded to the other respect.”
“Let us hear about this crazy thing God is doing with the church.” That was the invitation of the Rev. Gradye Parsons, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly, to the capacity crowd at the 219th General Assembly (2010) breakfast Monday. His invitation was illuminated later by the breakfast’s speaker, Phyllis Tickle, author of The Great Emergence; How Christianity is Changing and Why.
It’s hard to miss the smiling faces of the local host committee members.
These volunteers, each in their ubiquitous white bib (as modeled here by Judy Maul of Plymouth, Minn., and Carole Killpatrick, Minneapolis), seem to be everywhere, most appropriately when you can’t seem to locate a direct path from Hall E to Room 203D, for example.