The Session proceeds with the unconstitutional trial of RE David, despite three complaints.
Following the baseless charges and proceedings against RE’s David, Barnett, and Scott, the Session of Midway Presbyterian Church has received, and mishandled, three new complaints.
One complaint focused on the Session’s biased and unjust refusal to allow reasonable requests and indulgences to the three accused REs, namely the referral of the case to the Presbytery’s jurisdiction (since the Midway Session is undeniably biased and prejudiced), that the trials be held in the open to allow for fairness and to clear the good names of the accused, and that the trials be professionally recorded and transcribed. The Session denied all of these requests, even though they are based on Biblical examples and explicit requirements of the Book of Church Order.
The second complaint points out that none of the current sitting Session members are qualified to be judges over the case. Every active member of the Session has publicly expressed their prejudice by sending a letter to the entire congregation on October 19th stating the opinion that the three accused REs are guilty. This situation is explicitly forbidden by BCO 32-17 which states “Pending the trial of a case, any member of the court who shall express his opinion of its merits to either party, or to any person not a member of the court; or who shall absent himself from any sitting without the permission of the court, or satisfactory reasons rendered, shall be thereby disqualified from taking part in the subsequent proceedings.”
The third complaint alleges that the session violated the constitution by entering process against the three accused REs, including suspension of their sacred duties, when they merely exercised their constitutional right to complain as defined in the Book of Church Order. This flies directly in the face of the ruling in SJC case 2019-11 which stated “The right to seek redress of improper actions by complaint or appeal is foundational to our Constitutional system. Both due process and basic charity demand that no member or officer should be ostracized or penalized for the mere filing of a complaint or appeal. The filing of a complaint or appeal may never, standing alone, constitute proper grounds to deny any privilege of membership or office in our church.”
Willful Defiance and Ignorance
The Session knows better. In the case of each of the three complaints, there is no excuse. It is more than obvious to any objective person that the outcome of the trials is already pre-determined by those sitting in judgment. Three admonishments were laid before them, in addition to what their consciences must already be screaming, and yet the Session proceeds un-phased.
To make matters worse, the Session refused to even properly hear the complaints, thereby violating the Book of Church order yet again. All three of these complaints were referred to various committees in lieu of hearing and ruling on them as the Book of Church order requires. This is clearly another stall tactic to delay any possible redress until after the trials commence. All three complaints have been elevated and now are at the Presbytery level pending adjudication.
Just when you think the corruption and willful violation of the constitution can’t get any more out of hand, it does. It does because the Session of Midway Presbyterian Church, under David Hall’s failed leadership and narcissistic hegemony, is fundamentally broken. Pray that it can be repaired before this church falls even further into disarray, disunity, and ecclesiastical corruption.