Last year’s General Assembly passed a motion that would require a particular church to gather a quorum of at least 50 percent of its members in order to make a decision to leave the denomination. However, the motion failed to receive the needed approval of two-thirds of the presbyteries.

This year, Evangel and Eastern Canada presbyteries have submitted overtures (10 and 12) recommending a related motion. They propose that the language in BCO 25-11 be modified to require a church to give to its members at least 30 days’ notice of a meeting to consider withdrawing from the PCA.

“It’s a softer approach to dealing with this issue,” explains Ruling Elder John Pickering of Red Mountain Church in Birmingham, Alabama. “Churches ought to be free to leave. But they ought to do so having made a carefully thought-out decision, not a hasty decision.”

According to Teaching Elder Kyle Hackman of Christ Church Toronto, there was at least one instance in the recent past where members of a church said they didn’t know about such a meeting.

“To my knowledge, I don’t know that this overture would have changed anyone leaving the PCA,” says Hackman, “but there should be more wisdom and time to think about things before leaving the denomination.”

2 Responses to Overtures Would Require 30 Days’ Notice on Meetings to Withdraw from PCA

  1. Bruce Golden says:

    BCO 25-11 is well written and clearly places the decision on the congregation … 25-2 establishes the communing membership participation to cause the Session to call such a meeting and gives the requirement of public notice of one week prior to the meeting. If a particular church believes more notice is appropriate, then can provide more notice within it’s congregation.
    Sometimes congregations need to make significant decisions quickly and one week is a reasonable requirement in and around our modern work schedule.

  2. Overture Supporter says:

    If I understand the previous post correctly, the writer seems to misconstrue BCO 25-11 and 25-2 with respect to the Session’s power to call such a disaffiliation meeting. Nothing in those paragraphs requires a congregation to request the meeting where a vote is taken to disaffiliate with the PCA. A Session can announce that meeting on its own, with one week’s notice (even, theoretically, for early on a Wednesday morning in the summer). The congregation loses no power with this Overture; only the Session does.