Church Unity Resources

In this season of the life of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), some congregations are exploring the possibility of departing our fellowship for another denomination.  The Covenant Network offers this collection of resources to assist those seeking accurate information as individuals, congregations, and presbyteries discern Christ’s will for their witness and mission.

To discuss your particular situation, call or email National Organizer Tricia Dykers Koenig, 216-658-1770.

Frequently Asked Questions About Ordination and Church Unity from the Covenant Network.


In Times of Controversy – Discernment and Decision-Making

The Constitutional Services Department of the Office of the General Assembly, Church Conflict and Negotiation resources

Overview from the Office of the General Assembly on GA221 Reconciliation.

Theological Task Force on the Peace, Unity, and Purity of the Church – Final Report Resources

Presbyterians in Times of Controversy – Special Issue of the Journal of Presbyterian History, Spring 2000

“Why Am I a Presbyterian?,”  Abigail Rian Evans, in the Journal of Presbyterian History,    Spring/Summer 2008

“Staying in the Church,”  Theodore J. Wardlaw, address to the First Presbyterian Church of Houston, TX, September 25, 2013

Our Witness to Christian Love: A Call to the PC(USA),” Statement of the Faculty of Columbia Theological Seminary, May 1, 2014

A chart of Presbyterian Family Connections

Victoria G. Curtiss, Guidelines for Communal Discernment

Insights: The Faculty Journal of Austin Seminary, Spring 2012, “The Church Faces Schism

“Why We’re Staying”

StayPC(USA),  “a blog for those of us who are evangelically-minded, historically orthodox, and staying put in the PC(USA)”

Steve Marsh, “Why I’m Not Leaving the Presbyterian Church (USA): a Reformed Ecclesiology in a Post-Christendom Context”

PC(USA) Positions

Constitutional Musing: Misrepresentations about the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

~ Marriage – W-4.9000

OGA Advisory Opinion on Approved Amendment of W-4.9000
OGA Same Gender Marriage after Supreme Court: Obergefell v. Hodges

~ Ordination Standards – Amendment 10-A, now G-2.0104b

What it does and doesn’t do 
The constitutional case
G-6.0106b in Presbyterian perspective
Why you should vote for Amendment 10-A
10-A affirmations
Mark Achtemeier, “And Grace Will Lead Me Home: Inclusion and Evangelical Conscience”
Arlo Duba on why he changed his mind

Constitutional Services on PC(USA) Ordination Standards – video with Marcia Myers and Andrew Black

~ Scriptural Authority

General Assembly Position Statement and Resource Document, Presbyterian Understanding and Use of Holy Scripture and Biblical Authority and Interpretation

~ Christology

Hope in the Lord Jesus Christ, an Affirmation by the 214th General Assembly (2002)

~ Pluralism

Is Christ Divided?  Report of the Task Force on Theological Pluralism Within the Presbyterian Community of Faith,  Approved By the 200th General Assembly (1988)

When a Congregation Considers Leaving the PC(USA)

A searchable version of the PCUSA Constitution

Some provisions related to congregational dismissals from the Annotated Book of Order

218th General Assembly (2008) action on transfer of ministers and congregations to transitional presbyteries – including some criteria for presbyteries to consider

218th General Assembly (2008) action on “gracious dismissal” policies

Notes on ECO polity by Dan Saperstein

ECO Essential Tenets and the Authority of Scripture by Chuck Rassieur

Recent GAPJC decision, 221-03, affirming that it is the fiduciary responsibility of the presbytery to consider the value of property held in trust, when considering the dismissal request of a congregation, and a FAQ on “Gracious Dismissal Policies” from the Office of the General Assembly, in light of the decision (Tom v. Presbytery of San Francisco)

OGA Advisory Opinion #4 on Renunciation of Jurisdiction

OGA Advisory Opinion #11 on Church Property

OGA Advisory Opinion #17 on Schism

OGA Advisory Opinion #19 on Implementing the Trust Clause for the Unity of the Church

OGA Constitutional Musing #12 on Responding Pastorally to Troubled Churches

OGA Constitutional Musing #13 on Three Actions Taken at Reunion in 1983

Decision of the Permanent Judicial Commission of the Synod of Southern California and Hawaii, Session of St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church of Santa Barbara, CA, et al. v. Presbytery of Santa Barbara, that the presbytery’s action to become a “union presbytery” with a presbytery of ECO: A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians is unconstitutional; and the complaint against the presbytery’s action

Discernment and Dismissal Documents from the Presbytery of Donegal

A collection from the Presbyterian Coalition

Another Perspective

The Layman


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