Jason Helopoulos: ‘I Love the (Imperfect) PCA at 50’
By Jason Helopoulos
PCA 50th anniversary

Photo by Harry Miller on Unsplash.

My beloved denomination, the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), turns 50 this year. Anyone who knows me knows I love the PCA. It has been my spiritual home for close to 25 years.

The PCA is far from perfect (as evidenced by counting me among its members), but I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. The very things that attracted me to the PCA years ago continue to excite me most about it today.

1. The PCA is biblically minded.

The PCA began with a desire to be true to the Scriptures, and it continues to uphold that commitment. It proves no small thing for a denomination to persevere in holding to the inspiration, inerrancy, authority, and sufficiency of the Scriptures in its faith and practice.

I can truly say I don’t know a single pastor, elder, deacon, or PCA church that would deny the authority of the Word of God. Whether I’m in a PCA congregational, session, presbytery, or General Assembly meeting, a biblical argument is a winning argument.

As a whole, the PCA knows it received a gift passed along by previous generations of the church. The denomination makes a concerted effort to remain unashamed of the gospel—“the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes” (Rom. 1:16). The PCA maintains a high view of God, a robust view of grace, and a low view of human ability.

2. The PCA is productively Presbyterian.

At first glance, this may appear to be an oxymoron. Presbyterians rightfully earned a reputation for moving slowly and cautiously. However, I’ve come to the conviction through the years that we benefit from our Presbyterianism.

Presbyterianism, by definition, necessitates connection with others—not just people in my local church but other churches and presbyteries. Churches in other parts of the country, throughout the state, and in neighboring cities are connected. Churches in rural and urban, college and blue-collar, politically progressive and politically conservative populations are all united as one. Churches among different ethnicities, languages, and socioeconomic classes are linked in the courts of the church.

We’re connected. Yet no bishop rules over this family of churches. No edicts or judgments come from “on high.” Presbyterianism requires continual compromise. Most issues facing the church find resolution through clear articulation, informative discussion, and even heated debate.

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