Shuck and Jive

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Lisa Larges Decision

The Synod PJC has made a ruling regarding the Lisa Larges case that I reported on Saturday. Presbyweb posted a copy of the decision. I am still trying to figure out what it means. The complainants against the presbytery cited a number of errors and only one was sustained by the PJC.
The presbytery erred when it voted to certify the candidate as "ready for examination...with a departure" because the examination for ordination is the proper time for Presbytery to determine whether or not a candidate's departure constitutes a failure to adhere to the essentials of the Reformed faith and polity....The debate and vote on January 15th was not an examination for ordination.
OK, so...
In response to the requests for relief in the complaint:
1) The Synod Permanent Judicial Commission grants the request to rescind the Presbytery's certification that the candidate is "ready for examination."
The ruling is that she is not at this moment ready for examination.

It seems to me, who thank God is no lawyer, that the presbytery jumped the gun regarding the scruple. Lisa should have just been approved without scrupling and saved the scruple for when she is examined for ordination itself.

I am curious what you think, but it seems to me that the next time the presbytery meets they can simply certify her as ready for examination.

This really is a pain.

This is why you need to vote in the new amendment B and change G-6.0106b that simply serves to put stumbling blocks before faithful candidates who want to serve the church.

Today's votes were as expected and reason to celebrate. Five yeses and one no!

Boston 54-42
Western Reserve 107-42
Geneva 44-29
Elizabeth 91-53

Beaver-Butler 21-92 (but they actually had some votes compared to a 'no' voice vote last time)

Score 56-80.

We are still in this.

Let's do this for Lisa.


  1. I am actually surprised that the Beaver-Butler Presby. got any yes votes. That was the originating presbytery for the confessing church movement in 1997.

  2. Let me see if I understand this: the judicial body that oversaw this case determined that because the scruple should not have been made regarding her readiness for the examination that Larges is therefore not ready for examination?

    Am I missing something?

  3. The church is trying to figure out how to apply this new scruple rule. She is one of the first test cases. It is a lot of procedural stuff.

    As I see it, the presbytery should have simply voted her ready. Then worry about the scruple when she is examined.

    Of course, in order to be examined, she has to receive a call.

    They need to go back to presbytery and do it again.

  4. Bureaucracy. God love it. (apparently)

  5. This is a hassle, which is the whole point of these court cases to me. Smart and faithful Lisa is clearing the way, though.

  6. Yes. I'm humbled when I think of the adversity she faces on a daily basis.

  7. Drew, maybe it's a reaction to having a name that sounds dirty...

    Any other Stephanie Miller fans out there?

  8. Those 21 votes are even more significant. The report I heard is that The Beav did not have a ballot, so these folks had to be counted publicly. Not an easy thing in a hostile presbytery.