Western Carolina, Northern New England Presbyteries Seek to Amend BCO 19-2: Potomac Looks to Amend Rules of Assembly Operation

Overtures one and two to the 40th General Assembly seek to amend the Book of Church Order (BCO) 19-2, which deals with “Examination for Licensure.” The purpose of licensure, BCO 19-1 states, is “To preserve the purity of the preaching of the Gospel….” The nearly identical overtures, seeking to uphold the PCA’s priority on “the faithful preaching of the Holy Scriptures,” seek to add two sections to 19-2.

The proposed section ‘e’ states:

“While our Constitution does not require the applicant’s affirmation of every statement and/or proposition of doctrine in ourConfession of Faith and Catechisms, it is the right and responsibility of the Presbytery to determine if the applicant is out of accord with any of the fundamentals of these doctrinal standards and, as a consequence, may not be able in good faith sincerely to receive and adopt the Confession of Faith and Catechisms of this church as containing the system of doctrine taught in the Holy Scriptures (cf. BCO 19-3, Q.2).”

And the suggested section ‘f’ reads:

“Therefore, in examining an applicant for licensure, the Presbytery shall inquire not only into the candidate’s knowledge and views in the areas specified above, but also shall require the candidate to state the specific instances in which he may differ with the Confession of Faith and Catechisms in any of their statements and/or propositions. The court may grant an exception to any difference of doctrine only if in the court’s judgment the applicant’s declared difference is not out of accord with any fundamental of our system of doctrine because the difference is neither hostile to the system nor strikes at the vitals of religion.”

To review the Overtures in their entirety, please click here.

Potomac Presbytery Seeks RAO Changes

Two other overtures have been received by the stated clerk and assigned to the Overtures Committee and Committee on Constitutional Business. Overtures three and four, both from Potomac Presbytery, seek changes to the Rules of Assembly Operation (RAO).

Overture thee would revise sections 12-1 and 15-1. A detailed comparison of the current and proposed content can be foundhere.

Overture four would alter RAO 14-6h (dealing with substitute recommendations). A side-by-side comparison of the existing and proposed language can be reviewed here.

To review all overtures to the 40th General Assembly, please click here.

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