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Pastors Pen PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 06 March 2013 20:46

PASTORS PEN
As many, if not all of you know, the session of Lebanon Presbyterian has asked Pittsburgh Presbytery to enter into a discernment process with our congregation on our direction and future denominational home.  As part of the Separation Policy adopted by Pittsburgh Presbytery, a Discernment Team (DT) has been assigned to our church, to begin exploring the issues that confront us, and why we should remain in the PC(USA).  The process is relatively simple.  They have already met with me and Pastor Dave, as well as the session, and will now schedule three congregational meetings.  Each meeting will have an agenda that will seek to help the congregation understand the denominational positions, while at the same time, hopefully answer any questions we may have for them on the future of the denomination and the presbytery in the theological issues that confront it.  The team is made up of four ministers and one elder, all of who are people of integrity and Christian faithfulness.  They are Dirk Lesnett, pastor of Elfinwilde Presbyterian Church, Dan Beckstrom, elder at Mt. Lebanon Presbyterian Church, Sharon Stewart, pastor of Crafton Presbyterian Church, and Ayana Teter, Associate General Minister for the Southern Branch of Pittsburgh Presbytery. The first Meeting with the congregation will focus on listening to the members of Lebanon, about the critical issues that need to be addressed, from the congregation's perspective.  They will want to know how you are feeling about the session's decision to enter into this discernment period, and what process issues need to be clarified.  A time of prayer and scripture will begin and end this meeting. The second Meeting with the congregation will seek to discuss and examine the theological issues that were identified in the first meeting.  Various perspectives will be shared, and the DT is calling on the congregation to listen with an open heart and mind.  The DT will want to ensure that they have heard everyone and everything that needs
to be heard, or to identify who else needs to be heard. The third Meeting with the congregation will explore the pros and cons of leaving or staying.  Options are discussed and the DT members may offer personal testimony as to why they are committed to staying in the denomination. The DT will once again meet with the session and the pastors in a separate meeting, and engage in a period of prayer for at least two weeks, before meeting with the session once again for their recommendation on whether they still wish to proceed with a polling of the congregation. The DT's meeting with me and Pastor Dave centered around our perceptions of the issues that concern the congregation.  We both expressed that decisions at both the denominational and presbytery level has caused concerns about where the denomination is going and how it muddles our ability to proclaim the Gospel.  We shared with the DT that many members of the congregation were saddened by the direction the denomination is moving, and Sheldon Sorge, admitted that he did not see the denomination moving back to its previous positions.  During the DT's meeting with the session, they once again requested feedback, and not surprisingly, the session essentially affirmed everything that Pastor Dave and I had shared.  The session is considering meeting with the DT one more time before setting up the first congregational gathering.  In the meantime, I would call upon all members of the congregation to clarify in their own minds the issues that have concerned them over the years and be able to speak to them.  The Vision Committee and the Theological Home Committee are working diligently on identifying the direction we believe God is guiding Lebanon.  The Theological Home Committee, which has been tasked by session to examine the pros and cons of staying in the PC(USA), as well as the pros and cons of finding our home in the Evangelical Presbyterian Church, or the Evangelical Covenant Order of Presbyterian, will soon make a recommendation to session and
communicate its reasoning to the congregation. Thank you for your continued patience during this long process, and once again, I ask you to participate so that Lebanon Presbyterian can continue to be faithful to our Lord and Savior.I
In the Love of Jesus Christ, Pastor Bob

PASTORS PEN

As many, if not all of you know, the session of Lebanon Presbyterian has asked Pittsburgh Presbytery to enter into a discernment process with our congregation on our direction and future denominational home.  As part of the Separation Policy adopted by Pittsburgh Presbytery, a Discernment Team (DT) has been assigned to our church, to begin exploring the issues that confront us, and why we should remain in the PC(USA).  The process is relatively simple.  They have already met with me and Pastor Dave, as well as the session, and will now schedule three congregational meetings.  Each meeting will have an agenda that will seek to help the congregation understand the denominational positions, while at the same time, hopefully answer any questions we may have for them on the future of the denomination and the presbytery in the theological issues that confront it. 

The team is made up of four ministers and one elder, all of who are people of integrity and Christian faithfulness.  They are Dirk Lesnett, pastor of Elfinwilde Presbyterian Church, Dan Beckstrom, elder at Mt. Lebanon Presbyterian Church, Sharon Stewart, pastor of Crafton Presbyterian Church, and Ayana Teter, Associate General Minister for the Southern Branch of Pittsburgh Presbytery. The first Meeting with the congregation will focus on listening to the members of Lebanon, about the critical issues that need to be addressed, from the congregation's perspective.  They will want to know how you are feeling about the session's decision to enter into this discernment period, and what process issues need to be clarified.  A time of prayer and scripture will begin and end this meeting. The second Meeting with the congregation will seek to discuss and examine the theological issues that were identified in the first meeting.  Various perspectives will be shared, and the DT is calling on the congregation to listen with an open heart and mind.  The DT will want to ensure that they have heard everyone and everything that needs 

to be heard, or to identify who else needs to be heard. The third Meeting with the congregation will explore the pros and cons of leaving or staying.  Options are discussed and the DT members may offer personal testimony as to why they are committed to staying in the denomination. The DT will once again meet with the session and the pastors in a separate meeting, and engage in a period of prayer for at least two weeks, before meeting with the session once again for their recommendation on whether they still wish to proceed with a polling of the congregation. The DT's meeting with me and Pastor Dave centered around our perceptions of the issues that concern the congregation.  We both expressed that decisions at both the denominational and presbytery level has caused concerns about where the denomination is going and how it muddles our ability to proclaim the Gospel.  We shared with the DT that many members of the congregation were saddened by the direction the denomination is moving, and Sheldon Sorge, admitted that he did not see the denomination moving back to its previous positions.  During the DT's meeting with the session, they once again requested feedback, and not surprisingly, the session essentially affirmed everything that Pastor Dave and I had shared.  The session is considering meeting with the DT one more time before setting up the first congregational gathering.  In the meantime, I would call upon all members of the congregation to clarify in their own minds the issues that have concerned them over the years and be able to speak to them.  The Vision Committee and the Theological Home Committee are working diligently on identifying the direction we believe God is guiding Lebanon.  The Theological Home Committee, which has been tasked by session to examine the pros and cons of staying in the PC(USA), as well as the pros and cons of finding our home in the Evangelical Presbyterian Church, or the Evangelical Covenant Order of Presbyterian, will soon make a recommendation to session and 

communicate its reasoning to the congregation. Thank you for your continued patience during this long process, and once again, I ask you to participate so that Lebanon Presbyterian can continue to be faithful to our Lord and Savior.I

In the Love of Jesus Christ, Pastor Bob

 

Upcoming Events

Tue, Jul 25th, @9:30am - 10:30AM
Adult Bible Study
Sun, Jul 30th, @11:00am - 12:15PM
Traditional Worship Service
9:30 a.m.

We begin our Morning Services with Sunday School (9:00 AM - Summer). We offer both Adult and Youth Classes. During the Summer, there is a Bible Study instead.

11:00 a.m.

Following Sunday School is our morning service. This traditional worship service seeks to bring glory to God through the singing of hymns, choral music, liturgical readings, and bible-based sermons.  This Service is at 11:00 (10:00 AM - Summer).


6:00 p.m.

The 6:00 Service has been discontinued as of August 4, 2015.

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