Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Schismatics in the Church in Corinth

CORINTH - First Presbyterian Church in Corinth is taking first steps to separate from the mainline Presbyterian Church (USA).

The action is especially controversial in this denomination, where each local church is connected and overseen by a higher governing body.

In June, a majority of the local congregation took issue with decisions made at the annual PCUSA meeting that they believe show a disregard for biblical authority.

In July seven families left the church and started a congregation in the Presbyterian Church in America, a conservative evangelical denomination still in the Presbyterian stream. Since then, many members in that PCUSA church have wrestled with staying in a denomination they think has shifted in substantial ways.

"My congregation got up to speed about what's been going on in the denomination real quickly," said Dr. Don Elliott, pastor of the Corinth church. "They couldn't take it any more."
Many in the Corinth congregation insist the Presbyterian Church (USA) has moved away from its belief in the authority of Scripture, which Elliott says is demonstrated by its allowing for the ordination of homosexuals in its local churches and presbyteries, or regional governing authorities.

Other points of disagreement include the denomination's broadened vocabulary when speaking of the Trinity, its reputed loss of missionary zeal and support of abortion rights.

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