I'm sitting at gate C-32 at DFW waiting for a much-delayed flight home. I've just been visiting with a pastor friend whose church is struggling with the same things we have been at the Kirk. Our plane would be fine, but for the fact that, when the doors were opened to let passengers out, the escape slide, well, escaped. I suggested that we could still fly home on time if we just went low and slow, but the pilots are having none of it.
Back to issues at hand: I get the sense that some people think that our disaffiliation came about as a fit of anger or pique. We have worked diligently in the PCUSA for decades (the Kirk is 45 years old). We have watched with dismay as the denomination has incrementally moved away from its original biblical foundations. This last June was the "tipping point" for us, and will be for many others yet to speak, because it officially allowed for the rejection of clear biblical teaching.
The sexuality issue is symptomatic--it is not the source of the problem or even the main problem. That main problem is the long slide away from clear biblical teaching. We have not left the PCUSA, the PCUSA left us.
It is with great sadness that a move like this is done. It is even more sad that so much has to be done in executive sessions because of what I feel is reasonable mistrust of the denomination, as evidenced in the recently revealed legal game plan. I have no problem with denominational leaders preparing for eventualities. My problem is what they've said, how they've said it, and the complete disregard of the thousands upon thousands of people in the pews who despair at what we've become.
My mistrust is not in our presbytery, but in what is pressing hard on all the presbyteries in the nation, striving to clamp down on dissidents. Our presbytery is just a small part of a much larger system that is, at its core, corrupted.
It probably sounds empty to some when I say that I pray for the PCUSA, but I do. I know hundreds of leaders whom I respect and for whom I wish only the best. I am thankful for their many emails and calls of encouragement, even though some of them profoundly disagree with what we've done. I wish the people in Louisville could catch some of that spirit.
Keep praying--keep the faith.