SESSION SUMMARY 8-3-14
The session of LMPC met in a called meeting for the purpose of hearing and acting on the Stated Clerk?s Task Force?s recommendations regarding General Assembly. A quorum was declared. Guests were Jane Jameson (reporting for deacons and PW), Bill Elmore (Task Force), Brinkley Melvin (Task Force), Tracie Stewart (staff who also co-authored GA approved report on marriage).
At the last stated Session meeting, the Session formed the Stated Clerks Task Force to make recommendations for the Session regarding marriage. The General Assembly asks that each Session have its own church manual, and also recommended that each Session make decisions regarding marriage that would be contained in its wedding policy and manual. We had previously voted on gay ordination as it affected our congregation, but this is about gay marriage and we have the opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to the denomination and Fellowship of Presbyterians. The discussion was civil, respectful with an eye toward the unity of the church as very important.
1) It was recommended that the Session of LMPC reaffirm the current standards about marriage in the Book of Order (W.4009) and Westminster Confession (6.131 and 6.133) and that this language be added to the wedding policy and church manual (upon recommendation from GA)
2) The Session agreed with the statement (patterned from Eastminster): While all people are welcomed to our church, and all people deserve civil rights, we believe and practice that Holy Marriage in the church is reserved for one man and one woman.
3) The Session unanimously reaffirmed our relationship with the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), noting that to leave would cause disunity and division in our own congregation, as well as heartache and financial costs.
4) The Session reaffirmed our relationship with The Fellowship of Presbyterians- It was noted that The Fellowship is not an exit ramp from the denomination as much as a place to stand in the denomination, and a group that works together for Missions and Discipleship.
5) The Session unanimously encourages people to speak their mind to the current stated clerk by email on any issue.
The Session heard and update on the Construction- that it will be tight to move the offices in by the end of August but we think it will happen. John Burriss shared a picture of a possible bell/steeple tower that we are thinking of calling an Honor Tower to honor God and others who have served Him in the Armed Forces, as Charter Members, Elders Emeritus, etc. Brenda White has volunteered to head up the landscaping committee.
Finance asked that each committee chair have their budgets in by 8/31. Finance also will make a report on the Laura Mars fund. The Ipad is being used.
Administration asked for a 9/7 called meeting for the election of elders and deacons. It was noted that we have a lot of younger adults coming on as officers and more men coming on as deacons.
The Session approved the baptism of Daniel Lamkin on 8/24 and Jason and Jase New on 9/21. They approved the giving of a Certificate from USC during a Minute for Mission on 8/17 to Bruce and Joanne Loveless.
It was noted that we may have to hire someone temporarily to help fill in if/when Laura Mars starts missing work for her illness.
The meeting was closed in prayer for the sick and for the unity and fruitfulness of the church.