From the Worldwide Faith News archives www.wfn.org
GA Moves Quickly on Presbytery per Capita
PCUSA NEWS <email@example.com>
21 Jun 1998 05:54:28
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General Assembly Moves Quickly on Presbytery per Capita, Special Group
and Future Assembly Arrangements
by Allison Politinsky
CHARLOTTE, N.C.--The General Assembly passed all the recommendations of the
General Assembly Procedures (GAP) Committee Friday morning, June 19,
including those to advise presbyteries of the "undue burden" they place on
the church by not paying the per capita apportionment fees; to disapprove a
measure to create two types of special group designations; and to determine
where the General Assembly will meet in future years.
The Presbytery of Santa Fe had presented a proposal to the GAP earlier
in the week to hold presbyteries accountable if they did not pay their per
capita apportionment funds to the General Assembly. The penalties would
include the advisement that "entities of the Assembly representing
presbyteries that have not met their per capita apportionment, that as
matters of Christian integrity and conscience, they should not participate
in debate and discussion or vote on any matter affecting the expenditure of
per capita funds."
The GAP decided against this portion of the overture and decided instead
simply to "communicate with each presbytery failing to meet its
apportionment the information that they place an unfair burden upon fellow
Presbyterians and other presbyteries to make up the difference." The
Committee's recommendation was passed.
Another proposal would have created two new categories of groups in
order to define their relationship with the General Assembly. The Special
Committee on Relationships of Accountability Between the Presbyterian
Church (U.S.A.) And Presbyterian Groups recommended the proposal to the GAP
earlier in the week, that would have created Covenant Relationships and
Corresponding Relationships. This would affect special groups created from
grass roots efforts to promote specific issues within the church. Some
members of the GAP prepared a minority report emphasizing the need to
strengthen the ties with these special groups in a non-binding way. The
GAP majority report prevailed in the Assembly with the disapproval of all
of the recommendations in the report of the Special Committee on
Relationships of Accountability.
Finally, the location and dates for two General Assembly meetings were
approved, in one case despite concern about conflicts with educational
institutions. The Assembly will meet in Denver, Colo. from May 24-31, 2003.
Those dates may conflict with public school dates and graduation dates at
higher education institutions. The General Assembly would have had to spend
an additional $100,000 to move the date due to increased hotel rates in
Denver later in the summer. The Assembly went ahead and approved the Denver
dates. In addition, the Assembly will meet in Richmond, Va. from June
27-July 3, 2004.
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