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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Where to Find the Amendments Books

This is an unusual year for Presbytery voting on Amendments from the General Assembly. Usually we receive just one booklet containing all the amendments, but because two of the amendments this time are very large - both in size and in historical importance - the amendments book is divided into three sections.

BOOKLET 1 contains the proposed new Form of Government (which has come to be known by the acronym, "nFOG."

BOOKLET 2 contains the text of a proposed addition to the Book of Confessions, the Belhar Confession.

BOOKLET 3 contains all other amendments, including a proposed replacement of section G-6.0106b of the Form of Government dealing with ordination standards (which has come to be known as the "fidelity and chastity" paragraph).

Monmouth Presbytery has decided it will consider the amendments on the following schedule:

November 23, 2010 - BOOKLET 2, The Belhar Confession

January 25, 2011 - BOOKLET 1, New Form of Government

March 22, 2011 - BOOKLET 3, all other amendments

At the Presbytery meeting preceding each of the above meetings, the Bills & Overtures Committee will be presenting some introductory material dealing with these documents. (In September, we heard their introduction to Belhar; in November we'll hear their introduction to nFOG; and in January we'll hear their introduction to the other amendments, particularly G-6.0106b.)

These booklets were handed out in September. We have a good number of additional copies, and will bring them to Presbytery meetings for distribution while supplies last - but those who have them are encouraged to please bring their copies with them, so as not to exhaust the supply.

The booklets are also available online on the PC(USA) website, where they can be downloaded and printed as pdf (Adobe Acrobat) files.

Please be sure your church's commissioners to Presbytery have access to these booklets. While we always encourage churches to elect commissioners who can attend Presbytery meetings regularly (so as to be more familiar with ongoing business), this is even more important with respect to our voting on the constitutional amendments - particularly so they can hear the Bills & Overtures Committee's introductions to them.

So, please encourage your Sessions to elect the same commissioner(s) for November, January and March, if at all possible.