According to http://www.eurweb.com
Three Presbyterian churches have finalized their divorce from the nation’s largest Presbyterian denomination, citing differences over the Bible’s supreme authority and the possible ordination of gays.
But unlike the split within the Episcopal diocese, which turned into a bitter court fight, the three congregations are leaving on friendly terms.
“The relationships we share with these three congregations, as brothers and sisters in Christ, are more important than property,” Rev. Rick Irish told the Fresno Bee. Irish is the interim leader of the Presbytery of San Joaquin, which governs Valley congregations within Presbyterian Church (USA).
The three churches will keep their church properties and have agreed to fulfill financial pledges for ministries run by the church they’re leaving.
The three departing churches will take 1,900 members with them. During Sunday’s service, Trinity Presbyterian congregants were given a small card bearing “The Essentials” of the Evangelical Presbyterian Church.
They were asked to confirm their desires to become members — and they responded with a shout of “yes!” The church’s 18 deacons and nine elders then knelt on the altar’s steps and pledged to denominational representatives to carry out their roles within the new church.