• Presbyterian Reformed Church

Presbytery Meeting Minutes May 2013

Presbyterian Reformed Church

Presbytery Meeting May 22-24, 2013

Charlotte, NC

OPEN SESSION MINUTES

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Opening

Devotional Exercises

At 9:02 AM, Presbytery opened with the singing of Psalm 78 verses 68 to 72 to the tune Tallis, reading of Ex 18:13-26 and Deut 1:9-18, and an address by Mr Worrell on Jethro’s counsel to Moses. Opening exercises concluded with prayer led by the moderator.

Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at the Holiday Inn Express in Charlotte, NC.

Roll Call

Sederunt:, Rev. Pastor Timothy Worrell, Rev. Pastor Michael Ericson, Rev. Pastor D. Douglas Gebbie, Rev. Pastor Mr Michael Ives, Mr Lindsay Smallidge, Mr Vince Gebhart, Mr Brian Myers, Mr Stephen Stam, and Rev. Mr Roy Mohon

Excuses have been received from Rev. Mr Brad Freeman, and Mr William McClure.  Elders John Humphrey and Christopher Levi were absent.

Minutes

It was moved and seconded to approve the minutes of the 2012 annual meeting. The motion carried.  Minutes from a Pro re nata meeting are missing and need to be attached.

Appointment of Officers

It was moved and seconded that Mr Humphrey continue as Treasurer. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that Mr Gebhart take the position as clerk. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that Mr Mohon take the chair as Moderator. The motion carried.

Approval of the Docket

The docket was adjusted.  It was moved and seconded to approve the draft docket as amended. The motion carried.

Correspondence

There was no correspondence not already placed elsewhere on the docket.

Review of Session Minute Books

Mr Gebhart, Mr Ives and  Mr Gebbie were appointed to the Committee to review the Session Books.

Treasurer’s Report

It was moved and seconded to receive the Treasurer’s report as corrected. The motion carried.

Reports of Standing Committees

Missions Committee Report

The Missions Committee report was presented by Mr Ives.

It was moved and seconded that the report be received as read, with accompanying documentation. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that an annual budget of $2000 be assigned to the Liberia project, $1200 of which to be dedicated to an increased stipend for Mr. Kartee.  This is to be reviewed at the next stated meeting. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the Presbytery send a letter of commendation to Mr Kartee, expressing its encouragement at his diligence and integrity.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the Presbytery have Missions Committee delay continuation of the adult Shorter Catechism project for one year, task it to arrange a suitable workload for Mr. Kartee in the interests of catechetical education in Liberia, and have it report to the next meeting of presbytery at its next regular meeting. The motion carried. Mr Gebbie led the Presbytery in prayer for our missions work.

AM Recess

Presbytery stood recessed from 10:33 to 10:48 AM.

Church Relations Committee Report

The Church Relations Committee report was presented by Mr Ives. It was moved and seconded that the report be received as read together with accompanying documentation.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the presbytery have the committee express it concerns, with regards to the KPCA denomination acceptance as a member, to the next meeting of NAPARC and that the Presbytery withholds its vote until such concerns are adequately addressed as related to confessional revisions and their practical ramifications thereby. The motion carried.  Mr Gebhart led the Presbytery in prayer.

It was moved and seconded that the clerk send the following letter to NAPARC identifying its concerns with the KPCA application.

Fathers and Brethren:

Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

The Presbyterian Reformed Church respectfully expresses its concerns to NAPARC regarding the reception of the KPCA.  While we are encouraged by the desire of our brethren to find a place among us, we perceive a constitutional problem.  The version of the Westminster Confession of Faith to which the KPCA subscribes contains additional material on the Holy Spirit, the love of God and missions, the state of infants dying in infancy, and good works in the unregenerate, which arguably depart from the historic Reformed faith.  It is also desired that a written statement be made clarifying the duties of the kwansaa and whether such women are given any official teaching or governmental authority in the church.

Until such matters are clarified and adequately addressed, the Presbyterian Reformed Church withholds its vote.  May the Lord grant you wisdom in your deliberations.

The motion carried.

It was agreed that the committee will circulate throughout the Presbytery a list of each NAPARC denomination’s appropriate synod or assembly, so that we can attend these according to time and resources.

It was moved and seconded to appoint Messrs Ives and Worrell delegates for the 2013 NAPARC meeting. This appointment would not preclude alternative volunteers. (NAPARC allows a total of four delegates from each denomination.)

Greetings from Observers

There were no observers from other denominations.

It was moved and seconded that Mr Gebbie attend the FRC Synod in Ontario.  The motion carried.

Training of the Ministry Committee Report

The Training of the Ministry report was presented by Mr Gebbie. The report contained a request from Bryan Peters to come under care of Presbytery and Mr Peters answers to the English Bible and Elementary Theology examinations set by Presbytery.

It was moved and seconded that the Presbytery move into closed session at 11:55am. The motion carried.

The Presbytery examined Mr Peters on life and call to the ministry.  It was moved and seconded to receive Mr Peters’ request to come under the care of Presbytery.  The motion carried. Mr Smallidge led the Presbytery in prayer for Mr Peters.

Lunch Recess

At 12:18 PM, Presbytery recessed for lunch with prayer. After lunch, at 1:45 PM, Presbytery reconvened with prayer, led by the moderator.

It was moved and seconded that Presbytery move out of closed session at 1:50 PM.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the Training of the Ministry report be received as read, with accompanying documentation. The motion carried.

Congregational Reports

The Charlotte congregational report was given by Mr Gebhart. It was moved and seconded to receive the report. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the Presbytery move into a committee of the whole to gain the mind of Presbytery on the future direction of the Charlotte congregation.  The motion carried.

Presbytery counselled the Charlotte session members to visit in person less frequently in an effort to preserve strength and to initiate an active search for a minister and to pursue ties with other denominations to provide pulpit supply.

It was moved and seconded that the Presbytery move out of the committee of the whole.  Mr Ives led the Presbytery in prayer for the Charlotte congregation.  The motion carried.

Reports of Standing Committees (continued)

Stewardship Committee

The Stewardship Committee report was presented by Mr Gebhart.  It was moved that the report be received as read.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the recommendations in the report be taken up as separate motions.  The motion failed.

It was moved and seconded to move into the committee of the whole for 30 minutes to discuss the recommendations of the Stewardship committee.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that Presbytery move out of committee of the whole at 3:10PM. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the congregational reports be given in two parts, the first in open session to share public information and the second in executive session to discuss more private and pastoral matters, including training and calling of potential ruling elders.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that Presbytery move into closed session at 3:15PM. The motion carried.

(The Minutes which follow from a Closed Session were later returned to Open Session in the form of  two motions which are recorded.  They appear here now in chronological order of the meeting.)

Mr Dilday Libel

The original libel against Mr. Dilday was read from the August 2009 pro re nata meeting minutes.  An email dated May 20, 2013 from Mr. Andrew Myers was also read.  Mr. Brian Myers led in prayer.

Afternoon Recess

At 3:35PM, Presbytery recessed for a break. Presbytery reconvened at 3:50PM.

It was moved and seconded to receive the correspondence from Mr. Andrew Myers.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the Presbytery of the PRC having deferred action on the motion to depose Mr Steven Dilday which was to come before it’s 2010 regular meeting, having sought by means of personal contact and two written overtures over the past three years to pastorally reach out to Mr Dilday, in the face of his continued contumacy, the Presbytery now deposes Mr Dilday in the following proclamation:

In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, the sole King and Head of this Church, and by virtue of the power and authority committed by Him to it, we now solemnly depose you, Mr Steven Dilday, from the office of the holy ministry.

It was moved and seconded to end debate. The motion carried.

The motion to depose Mr. Dilday carried.

Supper Recess

At 5:20PM, Presbytery recessed for dinner. Presbytery reconvened with Mr Stam leading in prayer at 7:05PM.

It was moved and seconded that Mr. Steven Dilday be placed into membership the Charlotte PRC as a member under the lesser excommunication. The motion failed.

It was moved and seconded that the motion deposing Mr Steven Dilday be appended with the following words: and, with heavy heart, we state that you, Mr Steven Dilday, are no longer under the jurisdiction and responsibility of the Presbyterian Reformed Church.  It is our prayer that this action will yet be used by our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to repentance and restoration.  The motion carried.

Prayer being offered by the moderator, at 8:30PM, Presbytery stood adjourned until 9 AM tomorrow.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

The Presbytery reconvened in open session at 9:03 AM. The Moderator lead devotions with the reading of Philemon, the singing of Psalm 85:1-8 to the tune St. Bernard, and prayer.

Congregational Reports

It was moved and seconded that Presbytery go into closed session.  The motion carried.

Rev. Brad Freeman joined the meeting via telephone.  The Columbus congregational report was given by Mr Smallidge. It was moved and seconded to receive the report. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the Presbytery rescind its previous directive of holding a minimum of two services per month in Columbus, so that the session can deliberate on these matters.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the PRC of Columbus be renamed the PRC of Indiana.  The motion carried.

Bi-vocational Ministry

It was moved and seconded that Presbytery move into the committee of the whole. The motion carried.

The difficulties and challenges of bi-vocational ministry were discussed.

It was moved and seconded to come out of the committee of the whole. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that Presbytery recommend to the sessions that they reconsider their minster’s vacation package in light of the minister’s particular situation.  The motion carried.

Mr Gebbie led the Presbytery in prayer for the Columbus congregation.  The telephone connection with Rev. Freeman ended.

AM Recess

Presbytery stood recessed from 11:10 to 11:30 AM.

Reports of Standing Committees (continued)

Church Relations Committee Report

It was moved and seconded to move into the committee of the whole.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded to move out of the committee of the whole.  The motion carried.

Mr Dilday Libel

It was moved and seconded to release the minutes and related documents concerning Mr Steven Dilday’s libel for public use by ministers and elders of the PRC as they see fit.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the Presbytery come out of closed session. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded to place all carried motions related to the Columbus congregational report to open session minutes.  The motion carried

Mr Gebhart led in prayer.

Lunch Recess

Presbytery stood recessed for lunch from 12:30 to 1:40 PM.

By common consent it was decided that the clerk would add the Committee report on the review of session books to the draft minutes subsequent to the close of Presbytery.

Reports of Standing Committees (continued)

Publications Committee Report

The Publications Committee report was given by Mr Gebbie. It was moved and seconded to receive the Publication’s Committee report. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that Mr Gebhart replace Mr Gebbie as the convener of the Publications Committee.  The motion carried.

Congregational Reports (continued)

The Chesley congregational report was given by Mr Gebbie.

The Rhode Island congregational report was given by Mr Gebhart.

By common consent, Mr Gebbie will write a letter of commendation to Mr John Humphrey for his service as an elder.

It was moved and seconded to move into the committee of the whole. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded to move out of the committee of the whole.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that Mr Brian Myers be added to the Rhode Island session as an assessor elder and removed from the Charlotte session.  The motion carried.

The Des Moines congregational report was given by Mr Stam.

The Stockton-on-Tees congregational report was given by Mr Mohon.

Report of Ad Hoc Committees

Report of the FoG-BoD Committee

The ad hoc Committee on The Form of Government and Book of Discipline was presented by Mr Gebbie. It was moved and seconded to receive the report. The motion carried.

PM Recess

Presbytery stood recessed from 3:35 to 3:50 pm.

It was moved and seconded that the Presbytery use the book of church order entitled, Practice of the Free Church of Scotland (8th Edition, revised) as its practice for a period of five years in order to evaluate it as a possible replacement for the current FoG-BoD.  During this period, the FoG-BoD will remain the stated FoG-BoD of the PRC. The motion carried.

Ad Hoc Committees (continued)

Report of the Psalmody Conference Committee

The report of the ad hoc Committee for a Psalmody Conference was given by Mr Gebbie. It was moved and seconded to receive the report. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that a Family/Psalmody Conference be attached to the 2015 stated meeting of Presbytery to mark the 50th anniversary of the PRC.  The meeting is tentatively planned to be held in Indiana.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that Mr Smallidge be added to the Committee for a Psalmody Conference. The motion carried.

It was moved that the ad hoc Committee on the FoG-BoD be tasked to look into the matter of ecclesiastical teleconferences, and develop a set of recommended rules for such teleconferences to be considered by the Presbytery at its next regular meeting.  Specifically, the committee would deal with the following questions:

  1. Is a regular quorum required in every instance? Describe circumstances, if any, when it would not be required, such as ratification of actions at a later meeting.

  2. Are votes by tele-conferees allowed? Describe circumstances, if any, when it would be allowable.

  3. Is the “ratification” mechanism the best procedure for us to employ? Recommend a method of recording minutes if/when using this mechanism.

  4. Should there be different rules for sessions than presbytery? If so, give rationale.

The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded that the clerk respond appropriately to Mr Andrew Myers email of May 20, 2013.  The motion carried.

Mr Smallidge led in prayer for the Psalmody Conference and the constitutional order practiced in the church.

It was moved and seconded to move into closed session.  The motion carried.

Congregational Reports (closed session)

The Presbytery entered into a closed session discussion on each of congregational reports.

It was moved and seconded to receive the Chesley report.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded to receive the Rhode Island report.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded to receive the Des Moines report.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded to receive the Stockton-On-Tees report.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded to come out of closed session. The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded to place the actions taken on the congregational reports from closed session to open session.

Mr Brian Myers led in prayer for the congregations.

New Business

The Rev. Ives read a statement expressing his concern about the current practice of erasure from the Communion rolls as means of congregational church discipline.

It was moved and seconded to go into the committee of the whole at 6:10PM to discuss the matters raised by Rev. Ives.  The motion carried.

It was moved and seconded to come out of the committee of the whole at 6:55PM.  The motion carried.  No actions were taken related to this matter.

Time and Place of Next Meeting

It was moved and seconded that the next regular meeting of Presbytery be held at Saltburn-by-the-Sea, England on April 11th-17th, 2014.  The motion carried.

Report of Committee for the Review of Session Books

The report of the ad hoc Committee for the Review of Session Books is amended to the minutes after the meeting ended as follows:

The following observations on the Chesley and Des Moines congregation session books. Chesley appears to have recorded no session meetings since 2009. The Des Moines session records three meetings from July, 2012 to present. While no marginal notations are made, noteworthy actions are given headings in bold in the text of the minutes. Otherwise, these minutes appear to be in perfect order.  The Indiana congregation session book is in good order.  The books for RI, Stockton and Charlotte were not reviewed.

Adjournment

It was moved and seconded to adjourn. The motion carried. At 5:00 PM, after a benediction by the moderator, Presbytery stood adjourned.

___________________________

Rev. Roy Mohon, Moderator

___________________________

Vince Gebhart, Clerk

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