For many years, votes on ordination standards have been a focal point for General Assemblies. We are gratified that, this year, the progress accomplished through Amendment 10-A has been strongly ratified with little drama. We are grateful for the pastoral statement issued by the 220th GA, which reminds the church that Presbyterians hold different views of Scriptural teaching about the morality of same-gender relationships, and calls for respectful dialogue as we continue to discern the will of Christ.
We are disappointed that this Assembly has failed to address the urgent pastoral crisis in the growing number of places where same-gender marriage is legal. The GA missed an opportunity to issue an Authoritative Interpretation that would have allowed ministers to exercise discretion in specific pastoral situations while the church continues having a conversation about the definition of marriage.
We will continue to work within the PCUSA for a church as generous and just as God’s grace, and to stand alongside pastors and sessions as they minister to all families.
David A. Van Dyke
Mary Lynn Tobin
Co-Moderators, Covenant Network of Presbyterians