In the USA the establishment of The Evangelical Covenant Order of Presbyterians has just been announced.
The new denomination hopes to be more faithful to Scripture than has been their experience in the Presbyterian Church (USA).
From the press release:
Approximately 2,150 Presbyterians representing more than 500 congregations from 49 states are gathered for The Fellowship of Presbyterians Covenanting
Conference in Orlando, Florida. The three-day conference (January 18-20) invites pastors, elders, and ministry leaders to forge new paths to connect and collaborate around the shared mission of making
disciples of Jesus Christ. The Fellowship is committed to offering support and structure for congregations both in the PC(USA) and those who choose to leave.
During the Conference, the Fellowship is officially launching a new Reformed body, called The
Evangelical Covenant Order of Presbyterians (ECO). ECO is a denominational entity under the umbrella of The Fellowship of Presbyterians that is committed to growing and planting flourishing
churches and nurturing leaders. The distinctives of ECO include an emphasis on connecting leaders in accountable relationships, peer review systems for churches, leadership training, and a flatter polity
structure than the PC(USA).
The Fellowship offers three different options for affiliation so congregations can pursue what best honors their ministry context. The options are: affiliate with the Fellowship as a ministry association
(involves no change in status with the PC(USA)); pursue a union membership with the PC(USA) and ECO; and join ECO as full members (requiring dismissal from the PC(USA)
This order is coming into existence out of the work of renewal movement The Fellowship Of Presbyterians, but has now gone beyond seeking renewal in the PC(USA).
From the FAQ page:
How is The Fellowship of Presbyterians different from other Presbyterian renewal organizations?
For us, we believe the time to invest in denominational renewal has passed. We want to live into a new configuration rather than expend energies on the existing PC(USA). The focus of The Fellowship is to nurture faith and faithfulness in individuals, establish strong congregations as centers of God’s mission in their communities, and connect with God’s people in mission around the world.
How this will work in practice can only be guessed at.
The Empire, [PC(USA)], will, as they say, strike back.
They won’t willingly see property and assets walking out the door.
HT: Ed Stetzer