Presbyterian Church to split

  • Cutlass

    Posts: 426

    Dec 28, 2015 11:27 AM GMT
    The Presbyterian Church in my city is preparing to split from the main body. The reason given is rather vague, but the gay pastor of one the denomination's churches said it's probably due to the church's decision to ordain gays and allow same sex marriages. After all, the decision was made to split after gay ordinations and gay marriages were approved.
    The co-pastors at the church, a husband and wife team, said that the denomination's shift regarding gays and lesbians "is not the issue for us. It's just not." Then what is?
    The husband said, "In some denominations, including the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A), the Bible has become not the authoritative word of God, but one of many guides."
    The predatory r.c. church is probably not going to go lure the Presbyterian clergy as it has with the Episcopal ones since the latter has some similarities to the r.c. church. However, I wouldn't put it past the r.c. church if they didn't seek members from the Presbyterian church who are uncomfortable with gay rights.
    I often wonder if many Episcopal priests took up the offer of the r.c. church to join theirs. The r.c. church said they would be allowed to stay married (what happened to the vow of celibacy for r.c. priests?); they could have sex for the transmission of life (what about priests being chaste?); and they would not be allowed to remarry if they become widowed. This last requirement might be a turn-off if a man wants to have sex, including masturbation, and be in a relationship with a woman even if he doesn't marry.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 28, 2015 1:57 PM GMT
    Well, it does seem kind of contradictory, and unfair, if some Catholic priests can be married and some cannot. If it's a matter of fundamental Church doctrine wouldn't it apply to all equally?

    In the past a FORMERLY married man could become a Catholic priest, and a formerly married woman a nun. BTW, can a married Episcopal married woman become a Catholic nun today? I would imagine not, the Roman Catholic Church remaining sexist in its treatment of woman as inferiors.

    Besides, could a husband live with his wife in a convent? Which then makes me wonder, does a wife live in the parish rectory (the communal residence for priests)?

    I suppose this is what happens when you have unnatural laws for an organization - you find yourself with unnatural consequences.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 28, 2015 3:11 PM GMT
    Art_Deco saidWell, it does seem kind of contradictory, and unfair, if some Catholic priests can be married and some cannot. If it's a matter of fundamental Church doctrine wouldn't it apply to all equally? No, there are many rites within the Catholic Church - many of which do not require celibacy. All, as far as I know, forbid remarriage if the priest's wife dies. Nor can a married priest advance to the rank of bishop.

    In the past a FORMERLY married man could become a Catholic priest, and a formerly married woman a nun. That is still the case as far as I know; however, some religious orders (male or female) may not take a formerly married person according to their particular Rule.BTW, can a married Episcopal married woman become a Catholic nun today? I would imagine not, the Roman Catholic Church remaining sexist in its treatment of woman as inferiors. No, of course she cannot; however, it has nothing to do with treating women as inferiors.

    Besides, could a husband live with his wife in a convent? Which then makes me wonder, does a wife live in the parish rectory (the communal residence for priests)? I'm not sure on this one; however, the Church has many single priest parishes so I doubt this is a problem as many priest do not live communally.

    I suppose this is what happens when you have unnatural laws for an organization - you find yourself with unnatural consequences. There is nothing unnatural about the Church's rules on priestly celibacy. It is perfectly natural for an organization to make rules for its members. After all, until recently didn't the military forbid sexual contact between same sex servicemen as would be perfectly natural for its homosexual members? In fact, wouldn't the military be within in right to forbid all sexual contact (gay or straight) between its members if it chose to do so?Even some private companies frown upon employees dating each other. No one is coerced into the priesthood. It is up to each candidate to decide whether they are up to the challenges presented by the rule of celibacy.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 28, 2015 3:24 PM GMT
    theantijock%20engage%20stalker%20reducti

    Cutlass said...The r.c. church said they would be allowed to stay married...they would not be allowed to remarry if they become widowed...


    A friend of mine had this very same problem when her condo association changed the rules to no dogs allowed. Sometimes a condo will allow you to replace your dog, sometimes they change the size allowed and then if you had a big dog you can get another one as long as you own your unit (they grandfather you in) or in her case when the current dog would die she'd not be allowed to replace it.

    Thus why I never join a church or buy into a condominium.
  • IgnatiusReill...

    Posts: 158

    Dec 28, 2015 5:44 PM GMT
    UndercoverMan said
    Art_Deco saidWell, it does seem kind of contradictory, and unfair, if some Catholic priests can be married and some cannot. If it's a matter of fundamental Church doctrine wouldn't it apply to all equally? No, there are many rites within the Catholic Church - many of which do not require celibacy. All, as far as I know, forbid remarriage if the priest's wife dies. Nor can a married priest advance to the rank of bishop.

    In the past a FORMERLY married man could become a Catholic priest, and a formerly married woman a nun. That is still the case as far as I know; however, some religious orders (male or female) may not take a formerly married person according to their particular Rule.BTW, can a married Episcopal married woman become a Catholic nun today? I would imagine not, the Roman Catholic Church remaining sexist in its treatment of woman as inferiors. No, of course she cannot; however, it has nothing to do with treating women as inferiors.

    Besides, could a husband live with his wife in a convent? Which then makes me wonder, does a wife live in the parish rectory (the communal residence for priests)? I'm not sure on this one; however, the Church has many single priest parishes so I doubt this is a problem as many priest do not live communally.

    I suppose this is what happens when you have unnatural laws for an organization - you find yourself with unnatural consequences. There is nothing unnatural about the Church's rules on priestly celibacy. It is perfectly natural for an organization to make rules for its members. After all, until recently didn't the military forbid sexual contact between same sex servicemen as would be perfectly natural for its homosexual members? In fact, wouldn't the military be within in right to forbid all sexual contact (gay or straight) between its members if it chose to do so?Even some private companies frown upon employees dating each other. No one is coerced into the priesthood. It is up to each candidate to decide whether they are up to the challenges presented by the rule of celibacy.


    I have studied Church history as part of my graduate studies. I am not an expert, but I have just a bit of info to share.

    There are married priests within the ranks of diocesan clergy. Former Episcopal priests and Lutheran ministers have been ordained into the Catholic clergy. Some of their church's doctrines and rites are derived from the Catholic Church and for many the transition to the Catholic clergy was aided by their vocations as Anglican priests and Lutheran ministers. Their marriages are not impediments to their ordination. However, if their wives precede them in death, the man is not permitted to remarry. That same requirement applies to Catholic men who have been ordained as permanent deacons. Bishops in the Catholic Church can never marry.

    I had to dig out my old class notes. The first written mandate requiring priests to be chaste came in AD 304. Canon 33 of the Council of Elvira stated that all "bishops, presbyters, and deacons and all other clerics" were to "abstain completely from their wives and not to have children." A short time later, in 325, the Council of Nicea, convened by Constantine, rejected a ban on priests marrying requested by Spanish clerics.

    The practice of priestly celibacy began to spread in the Western Church in the early Middle Ages. In the early 11th century Pope Benedict VIII responded to the decline in priestly morality by issuing a rule prohibiting the children of priests from inheriting property. A few decades later Pope Gregory VII issued a decree against clerical marriages.

    The Church was a thousand years old before it definitively took a stand in favor of celibacy in the twelfth century at the Second Lateran Council held in 1139, when a rule was approved forbidding priests to marry. In 1563, the Council of Trent reaffirmed the tradition of celibacy.

    Several explanations have been offered for the decision of the Church to adopt celibacy. A.W. Richard Sipe, a former priest and author of Sex, Priests and Power: The Anatomy of Crisis (1995), states that the "question at the time was who is the final power -- the king or the church. If [the church] could control a person's sex life, it could control their money, their employment, their benefice." Garry Wills suggested in Under God that the ban on marriage was adopted to lift the status of priests at a time when their authority was being challenged by nobles and others. I believe the requirement for celibacy was more about the ability of the Church being able to inherit property. Men with children would bequeath property to their children; no children means property is inherited by the Church.

    The Roman Catholic Church's position today is derived from the Council of Trent. Celibacy is considered an important part of the priesthood, a sign of a priest's commitment to God and service.

    Is it possible that the requirement of priestly celibacy could be lifted? Maybe. There is Church dogma and Church regulation. The Catholic Church distinguishes between dogma and regulation. The male-only priesthood is Catholic dogma, irreversible by papal decree. The ban on marriage is considered a regulation. That means the pope could change it overnight if he wished.

    All of this information pertains only to diocesan clergy serving in the Latin or Roman Rite. Priests associated with a diocese live lives that are fairly independent. They are paid a salary drawn from the parish from which they serve, they can own property and inherit family wealth.

    There are other rites within the Catholic Church; Ukranian, Maronite, Melkite, Coptic, Chaldean, Syro Malabar, to name a few which have always allowed married clergy. The men must marry prior to receiving the Sacrament of Holy Orders. They are permitted to marry once. If their wife precedes them in death, they are not permitted to remarry. Bishops serving these rites cannot be married.

    Men and women of religious orders live differently. Members of religious orders have always professed vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. These men and women live in community and share what they have. Marriage would have always been impractical in a religious community because of housing a large religious community, spouses and children. Also there would be a lack of privacy. Members of religious orders are not paid a salary. Supporting a family is out of the question. They receive a monthly stipend for basic necessities such as toiletries, clothing, and maybe an evening at the movies. The stipend is usually no more than $200.

    I certainly do not expect Pope Francis to lift the regulation requiring celibacy, but it can be done.


    I'm done!
  • FRE0

    Posts: 4862

    Dec 28, 2015 8:23 PM GMT
    Cutlass said The Presbyterian Church in my city is preparing to split from the main body. The reason given is rather vague, but the gay pastor of one the denomination's churches said it's probably due to the church's decision to ordain gays and allow same sex marriages. After all, the decision was made to split after gay ordinations and gay marriages were approved.
    The co-pastors at the church, a husband and wife team, said that the denomination's shift regarding gays and lesbians "is not the issue for us. It's just not." Then what is?
    The husband said, "In some denominations, including the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A), the Bible has become not the authoritative word of God, but one of many guides."
    The predatory r.c. church is probably not going to go lure the Presbyterian clergy as it has with the Episcopal ones since the latter has some similarities to the r.c. church. However, I wouldn't put it past the r.c. church if they didn't seek members from the Presbyterian church who are uncomfortable with gay rights.
    I often wonder if many Episcopal priests took up the offer of the r.c. church to join theirs. The r.c. church said they would be allowed to stay married (what happened to the vow of celibacy for r.c. priests?); they could have sex for the transmission of life (what about priests being chaste?); and they would not be allowed to remarry if they become widowed. This last requirement might be a turn-off if a man wants to have sex, including masturbation, and be in a relationship with a woman even if he doesn't marry.


    I am a member of the Episcopal Church. Our former bishop (diocese of the Rio Grande) resigned and joined the Roman Church; although married, he is now a priest in the Roman Church. It appears that for him the last straw was a statement by our former presiding bishop, the Rt. Rev. Katherine Jefferts Schori, that she saw it as putting God into a very small box to believe that He could save only Christians.

    For many years the Roman Church has had a few married priests who had been priests in the Episcopal Church. It appears that few people are aware of that. For more information, I suggest google searches.

    Married priests in the Roman Church continue to live married lives just as if they were not priests. However, if a priest's wife dies, he cannot remarry and remain a priest.
  • FRE0

    Posts: 4862

    Dec 28, 2015 8:46 PM GMT
    It appears that the real issue in the Presbyterian Parish referred to by the op is how the Bible is to be understood.

    Some people and churches see the Bible as the infallible Word of God, almost as if God dictated it to a stenotypist who then preserved it on an indelible CD-ROM. That seems to be a minority position, but there are still plenty of Christians who think like that. The OT in particular is a subject of contention.

    As I see it, parts of the OT do express the Will of God. Probably most people, regardless of religion, would accept the last six of the Ten Commandments. After all, aren't we all opposed to murder, bearing false witness, coveting, etc.? The OT prophets condemned injustice, supported helping the down trodden, etc. Thus, many of us see that as an accurate expression of the Will of God.

    On the other hand, there are things in the OT that civilized people would never accept and which surely are not the Will of God. That includes treating women as property, killing disobedient children, etc. I would see all that as no more than ancient Hebrew culture much of which could not be the Will of God.

    Other parts of the OT are simply the history of the ancient Hebrews who no doubt distorted it to rationalize the horrible things they have done.

    Considering the above, I do not understand how anyone or any church can accept the entire Bible as the Will of God and believe that all the commands in it are from God. We have to use our brains! Of course in using our brains we will make mistakes, but we are likely to make worse mistakes if we fail to use our brains. It may be that the unacceptable parts have been included simply to give us an understanding of the ancient Hebrews.

    In any case, it wasn't until the fourth century AD that there was even general agreement on what should be included in the Bible. Before that, there were numerous variations. To assume that there were no errors in deciding what should be included seems unreasonable. There will always be differing opinions and that may not be a bad thing. There would be fewer divisions if we learned to respect the opinions of others.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 28, 2015 10:07 PM GMT
    Predatory RC Church? Please! If you want predatory proselytizing, check out the Southern Baptists.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 28, 2015 11:23 PM GMT
    MGINSD saidPredatory RC Church? Please! If you want predatory proselytizing, check out the Southern Baptists.


    The OP has it all wrong. It was the Episcopal priests who approached Rome not the other way around. His use of the word predatory and lower case letters r and c just confirms his anti-Catholic bigotry.
  • FRE0

    Posts: 4862

    Dec 28, 2015 11:43 PM GMT
    UndercoverMan said
    MGINSD saidPredatory RC Church? Please! If you want predatory proselytizing, check out the Southern Baptists.


    The OP has it all wrong. It was the Episcopal priests who approached Rome not the other way around. His use of the word predatory just confirms his anti-Catholic bigotry.


    You're mostly right. Although the Roman Church is predatory, it was, as you say, the Episcopal priests who approached the Roman Church rather than than the other way around. It is puzzling that Episcopal priests would swear allegiance to a dictator.
  • jjguy05

    Posts: 459

    Dec 29, 2015 12:31 AM GMT
    Art_Deco saidWell, it does seem kind of contradictory, and unfair, if some Catholic priests can be married and some cannot. If it's a matter of fundamental Church doctrine wouldn't it apply to all equally?



    Theological differences with Presbyterians might be too great, so it would be difficult for me to see Presbyterian parishes joining Rome. Episcopalians/Anglicans and Eastern Orthodox, OTOH, are theologically close to the Roman Catholic Church. The proposal for conservative Anglican parishes to join Rome wouldn't be something unprecedented for the Roman Catholic Church. Some Orthodox parishes left the Eastern Orthodox Communion and joined the Roman Catholic Church ("in communion with Rome") some centuries ago. They still have a great degree of autonomy (they conduct Eastern-Rite mass, rather than Latin mass, and their priests can marry), so any Anglican parishes that join the Roman Catholic Church would do so along the same model.

    The RC Church doesn't care about minor theological differences. The RC mainly cares about churches whose apostolic succession and sacraments it views as valid. The Anglican/Episcopalian and Eastern Orthodox (not to be confused with Oriental/Coptic Orthodox) fit this requirement. Lutherans might, I'm not sure. Presbyterians, who are Calvinists (John Calvin was much more of a "reformer" than Martin Luther was), might not. The Roman Catholic Church has a history of trying to woo Eastern Orthodox and Anglican churches "back"...not the Presbyterian church. And certainly not Evangelicals.
  • LJay

    Posts: 11612

    Dec 29, 2015 12:36 AM GMT
    Odd how the original post started out talking about Presbyterians and quickly shifted to Catholics.

    The headline implies that the main Presbyterian body is about to split. This is misleading and not true.

    It is not that unusual for a given congregation to separate itself from the larger church. People disagree. It happens. There are precedents.

    I suggest that the OP might learn a good deal more about the topic(s) before writing about them. Better yet, he might well learn a bit more about the topics and then run quickly away from them to preserve his own sanity.
  • oldfart

    Posts: 328

    Dec 29, 2015 3:19 AM GMT
    What is the "r. c. church" and whose term is it?

    thx
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 29, 2015 4:13 AM GMT
    oldfart saidWhat is the "r. c. church" and whose term is it?

    thx


    Roman Church
  • Import

    Posts: 7185

    Dec 29, 2015 4:14 AM GMT
    oldfart saidWhat is the "r. c. church" and whose term is it?

    thx

    Roman Catholic church
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 29, 2015 5:02 AM GMT
    freedomisntfree said
    oldfart saidWhat is the "r. c. church" and whose term is it?

    thx


    Roman Church


    As in the Jewish Jesus is sandwiched between Julius Caesar and the Flavian emperors; so, when it was time for Rome to adopt Christianity, they said, this is just emperor worship: J. Caesar and Vespasian and his sons.

    For the Julius Caesar part, see:

  • buddycat

    Posts: 1874

    Dec 29, 2015 11:54 AM GMT
    That is what I thought too, that Lutherans and Episcopalians are fundamentally closer to Catholicism. In The Tutors they show that Henry the 8th established doctrine for the Anglican church which to some dismay, were almost identical to Catholic doctrine. They said that Henry the 8th was Catholic in all regards but one, being told what to do by Rome like getting an annulment. I can tell you this though the more Evangelical the church is, the further it is from the Catholic church.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 29, 2015 12:05 PM GMT
    buddycat saidThat is what I thought too, that Lutherans and Episcopalians are fundamentally closer to Catholicism. In The Tutors they show that Henry the 8th established doctrine for the Anglican church which to some dismay, were almost identical to Catholic doctrine. They said that Henry the 8th was Catholic in all regards but one, being told what to do by Rome like getting an annulment. I can tell you this though the more Evangelical the church is, the further it is from the Catholic church.


    Before his matter of "conscience" over his marriage to his brother's widow, Henry was given the title "Defender of the Faith" for a book, Defense of the Seven Sacraments, he had written defending the seven sacraments which ironically enough Holy Matrimony is one. When excommunicated by Pope Paul III, the title was revoked. The title was restored to the English monarchs by an act of Parliament.

    Yes, Henry was very Catholic save for the problem with authority.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 29, 2015 2:25 PM GMT
    This is not meant as a threadjack though it might go that way. I just thought this an appropriate place to mention...

    I still recall when I was very young, first learning or realizing that there were so many denominations of Christians. Up until that point I thought there was only one, not knowing there was a difference between any two.

    How curious that there are so many different types of Christians who seem to insist that there's only one type of Muslim.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_schools_and_branches
    Islam_branches_and_schools.svg
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 29, 2015 3:07 PM GMT
    Presbyterian, Episcopal... Catholic. just dont drink the cool aid.
    remember-jonestown-small-jpg.jpg
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 29, 2015 3:22 PM GMT
    LJay saidOdd how the original post started out talking about Presbyterians and quickly shifted to Catholics.
    ...


    Presbyterians are dull.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 29, 2015 3:45 PM GMT
    [quote][cite]Cutlass said[/cite]... the Bible has become not the authoritative word of God, but one of many guides.../quote]maybe faced with say something like a $2200 heating bill for the month of December be sure its all about the bottom line not the authoritative word of God.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Dec 29, 2015 6:47 PM GMT
    jjguy05 said
    Art_Deco saidWell, it does seem kind of contradictory, and unfair, if some Catholic priests can be married and some cannot. If it's a matter of fundamental Church doctrine wouldn't it apply to all equally?



    ...

    The RC Church doesn't care about minor theological differences. The RC mainly cares about churches whose apostolic succession and sacraments it views as valid. The Anglican/Episcopalian and Eastern Orthodox (not to be confused with Oriental/Coptic Orthodox) fit this requirement. Lutherans might, I'm not sure. Presbyterians, who are Calvinists (John Calvin was much more of a "reformer" than Martin Luther was), might not. The Roman Catholic Church has a history of trying to woo Eastern Orthodox and Anglican churches "back"...not the Presbyterian church. And certainly not Evangelicals.


    I don't know what you mean by minor theological differences, but I do know the Church views the separation of Christians as terribly scandalous. And actively seeks the reunification of her separated brethren and to that end is always seeking ways for reconciliation. She does so because Christ wanted it so.

    "That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me." John 17:21 [KJV]

  • LJay

    Posts: 11612

    Dec 29, 2015 7:13 PM GMT
    UndercoverMan said
    LJay saidOdd how the original post started out talking about Presbyterians and quickly shifted to Catholics.
    ...


    Presbyterians are dull.


    In a way. They are also thoughtful, academically inclined, thorough, and, at times, severe. Presbyterians take things seriously, but have been know to tell jokes, though not often. I have also known a number of them that are fond of spaghetti.
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Dec 29, 2015 7:20 PM GMT
    Trouble in paradise??? This is why organized religion is such a spiritual drain. It's just so petty.