Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
The people at Friendship Church make creative use of art. They have also learned to be creative as they form their community and shape their narratives.
James Lee had been commissioned to start an African-American congregation. After reading Acts, his group decided on a multicultural plant instead.
Growing up as a cradle Presbyterian and a preacher’s kid, Presbyterianism was my sociocultural world. When my father got angry with me or my sister, he would often preface his remarks with the exasperated endearment, “Child of the covenant!”
Cuban Presbyterians used to be part of the PCUSA, and pastors paid into the pension plan. Then came the Castro revolution.
Churches need new thinking—on the part of denominational executives, pastors brave enough to walk into challenging situations, and people willing to let go of a church model that no longer works.
Mark Achtemeier and I once faced off at General Assembly over gay ordination. Sixteen years later, he preached at my ordination.
I have carried the burden of knowing that our church contributed to a man's death when we refused him the open acceptance, love, and support that he needed.
After Pathways settled in its new home, former St. Giles members started coming back to worship there. It took a little getting used to.