By Michael Gryboski, The Christian Post.
A conservative Presbyterian church formed in 2012 will soon be splitting one of their regional bodies, or presbyteries, into three entities in response to rapid growth.
The Evangelical Covenant Order of Presbyterians is in the process of dividing up the Presbytery of the Northeast into three new regional bodies.
At present, the Presbytery of the Northeast encompasses the region of New England, stretching North to Maine, as far South as Delware and as far West as Eastern Pennslyvania, with Western Pennsylvania being the Presbytery of the Rivers of Life.
The Rev. Dana S. Allin, synod executive at ECO, told The Christian Post that the creation of the new presbyteries comes as part of their way of avoiding excessive bureaucracy.
“Our polity indicates that presbyteries should ordinarily be between 10-20 congregations. Smaller presbyteries are able to have more relational connection with one another and better able to respond to each other’s needs,” explained Allin.
“We also don’t want presbyteries to become bureaucratic and so smaller presbyteries are able to be leaner. The Northeast has 32 congregations so they are a presbytery that is ready to give birth and multiply.”
A conservative Presbyterian Church? Compared to the Orthodox Presbyterian Church is a very liberal body.ECO is what PCUSA was in 2012.
Compared to the OPC, which does not allow women to teach children’s Sunday School, yes, the ECO is more liberal. But to characterize it as “a very liberal body” and “what PCUSA was in 2012” is patently unfair. The ECO, unlike the PC(USA), is devoted to proclaiming the Gospel message of salvation from sin and death through faith alone in the Person and Work of Christ alone.