Tuesday, June 16, 2009

GA 2009 - Monday

Hello from Disney's Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, Florida!

Although the PCA General Assembly won't officially begin until this evening, much has already taken place. Committees meet on Monday and Tuesday morning and conduct business which is then reported to the Assembly throughout the rest of the week. Although all the committees are engaged in important business, the Overtures Committee is perhaps the one that receives the most attention from those following along. Theological controveries and constitutional amendments, for example, are brought to the committee in the form of overtures asking the assembly to act in a particular way. Yesterday two overtures (essentially identical) asked the Assembly to appoint a study committee on the role of women in the church. This request stems from the current discussion on women serving as deacons in either an ordained or non-ordained status. Both (being discussed together) will be sent to the Assembly with the recommendation that the Assembly NOT form this study committee.

[EDIT: A minority report will be filed with reference to the committee's recommendation on overtures 5 and 10]

Other overtures dealt with amendments to the BCO. While in most cases there seemed to be a concensus that these overtures dealt with legitimate issues, their proposed solutions were deemed insufficient to resolve the problem. Another overture asked the Assembly to send a letter to the President about homosexuals serving in the military. This one was resoundingly voted against with virtually no discussion.

As I type I'm sitting in the gallery of the Overtures Committee on Tuesday morning as they discuss/wordsmith the grounds for their votes (they send grounds to the Assembly along with their recommendations in order to help the Assembly understand why they made a given recommendation).

The rest of today will be pretty relaxed. I'll be attending a lunch hosted by the MTW team in Turkey, then sitting in on some seminars this afternoon. We'll meet together for worship this evening to officially open the Assembly.

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