Among the reasons cited were the ongoing covid-19 pandemic and conviction of Session by SJC of previous constitutional missteps…
The full text of the email, send on July 12, is below:
I am writing to you as an Elder of Midway Presbyterian Church with regards to the congregational meeting set for Sunday 7-19-2020, however I am not representing the Midway Session.
This recommendation was hastily established. A Session meeting was called on July 4, 2020 and the Session met on July 8, 2020 to discuss and decide this matter.
The entire Session was not able to be present for the meeting.
This was not a unanimous decision by the Midway Session and a significant minority is opposed to this motion.
The current pandemic will prohibit full participation by the congregation in said meeting.
According to the Book of Church Order of the PCA (chapter 20-2) “A church shall proceed to elect a pastor in the following manner: The Session shall call a congregational meeting to elect a pulpit committee which may be composed of members from the congregation at large or the Session, as designated by the congregation.“
The Standing Judiciary Committee of the PCA ruled against the Midway Session and the Northwest Georgia Presbytery in the case of Dan and Angelia Crouse vs. the Northwest Georgia Presbytery (SJC Case 2019-03) for unconstitutionally handling officer nominations. See pages 44-47 of the following link:
The proposed action will expand the Session to 16 members and unduly enhance the influence of the church staff in the governance of the church. This will give the staff a voting block that will require a supermajority of ruling elders to prevail on any motion including the budget and other financial issues.
I am asking the congregation to support a substitute motion to postpone this meeting until January 2021 to allow the congregation reasonable time to prayerfully consider the church’s needs, the men’s qualifications, the establishment of a pulpit committee, and the subsidence of the global pandemic to allow for a greater congregational participation.
In His Service,
Elder Philip C. Dudt