Presbyterianism

Presbyterianism is a form of church government, practiced by many (although not all) of those Protestant churches (known as Reformed churches), which historically subscribed to the teachings of John Calvin. Presbyterianism traces its institutional roots back to the Scottish Reformation, especially as led by John Knox. There are many separate Presbyterian Churches in different nations around the world. Besides national distinctions, Presbyterians also have divided from one another for doctrinal reasons, especially in the wake of the Enlightenment.

History of Presbyterianism

These denominations derive their name from the Greek word presbyteros, which means "elder." Presbyterian church governance is common to the Protestant churches that were most closely modelled after the Reformation in Switzerland. In England, Scotland and Ireland, the Reformed churches that adopted a presbyterian instead of episcopalian government, became known naturally enough, as the Presbyterian Church.

In Scotland, John Knox (1505-1572), who had studied under Calvin in Geneva, returned to Scotland and led the Parliament of Scotland to embrace the Reformation in 1560. The existing Church of Scotland was thus reformed along Presbyterian lines. In Ireland the Presbyterian Church was formed from the Church of Scotland and later became The Presbyterian Church In Ireland.In England, Presbyterianism was established in secret in 1572, toward the end of the reign of Elizabeth I of England. In 1647, by an act of the Long Parliament under the control of Puritans, the Church of England embraced Presbyterianism . The re-establishment of the monarchy in 1660 brought the re-establishment of episcopalian government in England (and in Scotland for a short time); but the Presbyterian church in England continued in non-conformity, outside of the established church. In Ireland, Presbyterianism was established by Scottish immigrants and missionaries to Ulster. The Presbytery of Ulster was formed separately from the established church, in 1642. Presbyterians, as well as Roman Catholics in Ulster and the rest of Ireland suffered under the discriminatory Penal Laws until they were revoked in the early 19th century. All three, very diverse branches of Presbyterianism, as well as independents, and some Dutch, German, and French Reformed denominations, combined in America to form what would eventually become the Presbyterian Church USA (1705). The Presbyterian church in England and Wales is the United Reformed Church, whilst the tradition also influenced the Methodist church, established in 1736.

Because of an emphasis on equal education for all people, Presbyterians have 'planted' and encouraged schools across the US as the country grew and the missionaries were sent out to the people.

Characteristics of Presbyterians

Main article: Presbyterian church governance

Presbyterians distinguish themselves from other denominations by both doctrine and institutional organization, or as they prefer to call it 'church order'. The origins of the Presbyterian churches were in Calvinism, which is no longer emphasized in some of the contemporary branches. Many of the branches of Presbyterianism are remnants of previous splits from larger groups. These splits have been caused by disagreement concerning the degree to which those ordained to church office should be required to agree with the Calvinist Westminster Confession of Faith, which historically serves as the main constitutional document of Presbyterian churches. Those groups that adhere to the document most strictly are typified by baptism of the infant children of believers, the exclusive use of Psalms (modified for metrical singing), singing unaccompanied by instruments, a common communion cup, only men are eligible for ordination to any church office, and a fully Calvinist doctrine of salvation. Because of this diversity of belief, more conservative Presbyterians are likely to attend the smaller denominations that have chosen to split from a larger body. While these conservative Presbyterians are not in the majority, their numbers are significant.

Presbyterian government is based on Elders. Teaching and ruling elders, sitting as a 'Kirk Session', (commonly refered to as simply 'session') are responsible for the discipline, the nurture and the mission of the local congregation. Sometimes the practicalities of buildings and finance in the congregation are delegated to a distinct group (known variosly as a 'Board' or 'Deacons' Court'. Teaching elders (ministers) have responsibility for teaching, worship and performing sacraments. Ministers are called by individual congregations. A congregation issues a call for the minister's service, but this call must be ratified by the Presbytery.

Above the Kirk Sessions exist Presbyteries, which have area responsibilities. These are composed of ministers and elders from each of the constituent congregations. The Presbytery sends representatives to a broader regional assembly, generally known as the General Assembly, although an intermediate level of a synod sometimes exists. This congregation / presbytery / synod / general assembly schema is based on the historical structure of the larger Presbyterian churches, like the Church of Scotland; some of the smaller bodies, like the Presbyterian Church in America or the Presbyterian Church in Ireland skip one of the steps between congregation and General Assembly, and usually the step skipped is the Synod. The Church of Scotland has now abolished the Synod.

Presbyterians place great importance upon education and continuous study of the scriptures, theological writings, and understanding and interpretation of church doctrine embodied in several statements of faith and catechisms formally adopted by various branches of the church. References to the adoption of Calvin's theology of predestination and the typical member's predisposition to conduct themselves "decently and in order" have earned them the moniker of the "frozen chosen". However, most Presbyterians generally exhibit their faith in action as well as words, including generosity, hospitality, and the constant pursuit of social justice and reform as well as proclaiming the gospel of Christ.

Varieties of Presbyterians in North America

Even before the Presbyterians left Scotland there were divisions in the larger Presbyterian family. In North America, because of past doctrinal differences, Presbyterian churches often overlap, with congregations of many different Presbyterian groups in any one city. The largest Presbyterian denomination in the United States is the Presbyterian Church (USA) (PCUSA). Other Presbyterian bodies in the United States include the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), the Orthodox Presbyterian Church (OPC), the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC (http://www.epc.org)), the Reformed Presbyterian Church, the Bible Presbyterian Church (BPC), the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church (ARP Synod), the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and the Reformed Presbyterian Church in the United States (RPCUS). In Canada, the largest Presbyterian Church is the Presbyterian Church in Canada; in 1925, about seventy percent of which, merged with the Methodist Church, Canada, and the Congregational Union of Canada to form the United Church of Canada.

Famous American Presbyterians

  • Dick Armey, U.S. Representative; conservative Republican from Texas
  • John C. Breckinridge, U.S. Vice-President under Buchanan
  • William Jennings Bryan of the famous Scopes "Monkey Trial" in Tennessee 1925 and three times U.S. Presidential nominee for the Democratic Party
  • James Buchanan, 15th U.S. President
  • Frederick Buechner, author of fantasy novels and non-fiction religious books
  • Aaron Burr, U.S. Vice-President under Jefferson
  • The Rev. Aaron Burr, co-founder of Princeton University
  • John C. Calhoun, U.S. Vice-President under Adams and Jackson
  • Grover Cleveland, 22nd and 24th U.S. President
  • Brian DePalma, film director; raised as a Presbyterian
  • John Foster Dulles, U.S. Secretary of State in the Eisenhower Administration
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower, 34th President
  • Bill Frist, current Senate Majority Leader
  • Lamar Alexander, junior United States Senator from Tennessee
  • Jay Rockefeller, junior United States Senator from West Virginia
  • Mel Watt, Congressman from North Carolina and Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus.
  • John Glenn, Astronaut, United States Senator
  • Katherine Harris, Florida Secretary of State during the 2000 election crisis and current congresswoman (R)
  • Benjamin Harrison, 23rd U.S. President
  • A. A. Hodge, seminary professor
  • Charles Hodge, seminary professor
  • Andrew Jackson, 7th U.S. President
  • Stonewall Jackson, General in the Confederate Army
  • Norman Maclean, author and academic
  • James Knox Polk, 11th U.S. President (converted from Presbyterianism to Methodism)
  • Ronald Reagan, 40th U.S. President
  • Condoleezza Rice, Secretary of State (2005- )
  • The Rev. Fred Rogers, also known as the famous Mister Rogers, was an ordained Presbyterian Minister up until his death.
  • Jimmy Stewart, actor
  • Norman Thomas runs for President as the Socialist Party candidate in 1928
  • Daniel D. Tompkins, U.S. Vice-President under Monroe
  • Mark Twain, American author
  • Henry A. Wallace, U.S. Vice-President under F.D. Roosevelt
  • Benjamin Breckinridge Warfield, Princeton Seminary professor
  • William A. Wheeler, U.S. Vice-President under Hayes
  • Christine Todd Whitman, former governor of New Jersey
  • Woodrow Wilson, 28th President
  • The Rev. John Witherspoon, only clergyman to sign the Declaration of Independence

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In Canada, the largest Presbyterian Church is the Presbyterian Church in Canada; in 1925, about seventy percent of which, merged with the Methodist Church, Canada, and the Congregational Union of Canada to form the United Church of Canada. Lakers-Celtics Rivalry. Other Presbyterian bodies in the United States include the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), the Orthodox Presbyterian Church (OPC), the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC (http://www.epc.org)), the Reformed Presbyterian Church, the Bible Presbyterian Church (BPC), the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church (ARP Synod), the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and the Reformed Presbyterian Church in the United States (RPCUS). Draft Picks (June 2004):. The largest Presbyterian denomination in the United States is the Presbyterian Church (USA) (PCUSA). Rookies:. In North America, because of past doctrinal differences, Presbyterian churches often overlap, with congregations of many different Presbyterian groups in any one city. Reserves:.

Even before the Presbyterians left Scotland there were divisions in the larger Presbyterian family. Starters:. However, most Presbyterians generally exhibit their faith in action as well as words, including generosity, hospitality, and the constant pursuit of social justice and reform as well as proclaiming the gospel of Christ.
. References to the adoption of Calvin's theology of predestination and the typical member's predisposition to conduct themselves "decently and in order" have earned them the moniker of the "frozen chosen". They also have the record for most number of consecutive wins in a season (33). Presbyterians place great importance upon education and continuous study of the scriptures, theological writings, and understanding and interpretation of church doctrine embodied in several statements of faith and catechisms formally adopted by various branches of the church. They are notable for having the highest number of wins (2,621), the highest winning percentage (61.9%), the most number of finals appearances (28), and the second most championships (14).

The Church of Scotland has now abolished the Synod.
The Los Angeles Lakers is a National Basketball Association team based in Los Angeles, California. This congregation / presbytery / synod / general assembly schema is based on the historical structure of the larger Presbyterian churches, like the Church of Scotland; some of the smaller bodies, like the Presbyterian Church in America or the Presbyterian Church in Ireland skip one of the steps between congregation and General Assembly, and usually the step skipped is the Synod. Rudy Tomjanovich Head Coach in 2004, resigned February 2 citing health concerns. The Presbytery sends representatives to a broader regional assembly, generally known as the General Assembly, although an intermediate level of a synod sometimes exists. Phil Jackson Head Coach from 1999-2004 and 2005-Present, won three consecutive NBA titles on three different occasions, once with the Lakers. These are composed of ministers and elders from each of the constituent congregations. The Lakers won 4 titles under his tenure and accumulated a 0.733 regular season win percentage.

Above the Kirk Sessions exist Presbyteries, which have area responsibilities. Pat Riley Head Coach from 1981-91. A congregation issues a call for the minister's service, but this call must be ratified by the Presbytery. Purchased LA Lakers and Great Western Forum from Jack Kent Cooke. Ministers are called by individual congregations. Jerry Buss owner since 1979. Teaching elders (ministers) have responsibility for teaching, worship and performing sacraments. Bud Grant played for team before playing and coach football.

Sometimes the practicalities of buildings and finance in the congregation are delegated to a distinct group (known variosly as a 'Board' or 'Deacons' Court'. John Kundla (Hall of Fame coach during Minneapolis years). Teaching and ruling elders, sitting as a 'Kirk Session', (commonly refered to as simply 'session') are responsible for the discipline, the nurture and the mission of the local congregation. Bill Sharman (Basketball Hall of Famer; enshrined both for his playing career with the Boston Celtics and as a coach). Presbyterian government is based on Elders. Chick Hearn (broadcaster; Basketball Hall of Famer). While these conservative Presbyterians are not in the majority, their numbers are significant. Marcus Douthit.

Because of this diversity of belief, more conservative Presbyterians are likely to attend the smaller denominations that have chosen to split from a larger body. Sasha Vujacic. Those groups that adhere to the document most strictly are typified by baptism of the infant children of believers, the exclusive use of Psalms (modified for metrical singing), singing unaccompanied by instruments, a common communion cup, only men are eligible for ordination to any church office, and a fully Calvinist doctrine of salvation. Tony Bobbitt - Guard, 6'4", 190. These splits have been caused by disagreement concerning the degree to which those ordained to church office should be required to agree with the Calvinist Westminster Confession of Faith, which historically serves as the main constitutional document of Presbyterian churches. Sasha Vujacic - Shooting Guard, 6'7", 195. Many of the branches of Presbyterianism are remnants of previous splits from larger groups. Luke Walton - Small Forward, 6'8", 235.

The origins of the Presbyterian churches were in Calvinism, which is no longer emphasized in some of the contemporary branches. Slava Medvedenko - Power Forward, 6'10", 250. Presbyterians distinguish themselves from other denominations by both doctrine and institutional organization, or as they prefer to call it 'church order'. Jumaine Jones - Small Forward, 6'8", 220. Main article: Presbyterian church governance. Brian Grant - Center, 6'9", 255. Because of an emphasis on equal education for all people, Presbyterians have 'planted' and encouraged schools across the US as the country grew and the missionaries were sent out to the people. Devean George - Small Forward, 6'8", 240.

The Presbyterian church in England and Wales is the United Reformed Church, whilst the tradition also influenced the Methodist church, established in 1736. Tierre Brown - Point Guard, 6'2", 190. All three, very diverse branches of Presbyterianism, as well as independents, and some Dutch, German, and French Reformed denominations, combined in America to form what would eventually become the Presbyterian Church USA (1705). Brian Cook - Power Forward, 6'9", 235. Presbyterians, as well as Roman Catholics in Ulster and the rest of Ireland suffered under the discriminatory Penal Laws until they were revoked in the early 19th century. Vlade Divac - Center, 7'1", 260. The Presbytery of Ulster was formed separately from the established church, in 1642. Chris Mihm - Center, 7'0", 265.

In Ireland, Presbyterianism was established by Scottish immigrants and missionaries to Ulster. Chucky Atkins - Point Guard, 5'11", 160. The re-establishment of the monarchy in 1660 brought the re-establishment of episcopalian government in England (and in Scotland for a short time); but the Presbyterian church in England continued in non-conformity, outside of the established church. Caron Butler - Small Forward, 6'7", 217. In 1647, by an act of the Long Parliament under the control of Puritans, the Church of England embraced Presbyterianism . Lamar Odom - Power Forward, 6'10", 225. In Ireland the Presbyterian Church was formed from the Church of Scotland and later became The Presbyterian Church In Ireland.In England, Presbyterianism was established in secret in 1572, toward the end of the reign of Elizabeth I of England. Kobe Bryant - Shooting Guard, 6'6", 220.

The existing Church of Scotland was thus reformed along Presbyterian lines. Microphone Chick Hearn. In Scotland, John Knox (1505-1572), who had studied under Calvin in Geneva, returned to Scotland and led the Parliament of Scotland to embrace the Reformation in 1560. 44 Jerry West. In England, Scotland and Ireland, the Reformed churches that adopted a presbyterian instead of episcopalian government, became known naturally enough, as the Presbyterian Church. 42 James Worthy. These denominations derive their name from the Greek word presbyteros, which means "elder." Presbyterian church governance is common to the Protestant churches that were most closely modelled after the Reformation in Switzerland. 33 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Besides national distinctions, Presbyterians also have divided from one another for doctrinal reasons, especially in the wake of the Enlightenment. 32 Magic Johnson. There are many separate Presbyterian Churches in different nations around the world. 25 Gail Goodrich. Presbyterianism traces its institutional roots back to the Scottish Reformation, especially as led by John Knox. 22 Elgin Baylor. Presbyterianism is a form of church government, practiced by many (although not all) of those Protestant churches (known as Reformed churches), which historically subscribed to the teachings of John Calvin. 13 Wilt Chamberlain.

John Witherspoon, only clergyman to sign the Declaration of Independence. Gary Payton. The Rev. Karl Malone. Woodrow Wilson, 28th President. Derek Fisher. Christine Todd Whitman, former governor of New Jersey. Robert Horry.

Vice-President under Hayes. Shaquille O'Neal. Wheeler, U.S. Green. William A. A.C. Benjamin Breckinridge Warfield, Princeton Seminary professor. Byron Scott.

Roosevelt. Michael Cooper. Vice-President under F.D. Norm Nixon. Wallace, U.S. Jamaal Wilkes. Henry A. Happy Hairston.

Mark Twain, American author. 99 George Mikan (Minneapolis). Vice-President under Monroe. 44 Jerry West. Tompkins, U.S. 42 James Worthy. Daniel D. 34 Clyde Lovellette (Minneapolis).

Norman Thomas runs for President as the Socialist Party candidate in 1928. 33 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Jimmy Stewart, actor. 32 Magic Johnson. Fred Rogers, also known as the famous Mister Rogers, was an ordained Presbyterian Minister up until his death. 25 Gail Goodrich. The Rev. 22 Elgin Baylor (Minneapolis-Los Angeles).

Condoleezza Rice, Secretary of State (2005- ). 22 Slater Martin (Minneapolis). President. 19 Vern Mikkelsen (Minneapolis). Ronald Reagan, 40th U.S. 17 Jim Pollard (Minneapolis). President (converted from Presbyterianism to Methodism). 13 Wilt Chamberlain.

James Knox Polk, 11th U.S. 11 Bob McAdoo. Norman Maclean, author and academic. Their most bitter rivals are the Boston Celtics who have more Championship than them. Stonewall Jackson, General in the Confederate Army. The 2004-05 season marks only the fourth time the Laker franchise has failed qualifying for the post-season since the team moved to Los Angeles in 1960. President. Los Angeles is the only city to have two NBA teams (the other is the Los Angeles Clippers.).

Andrew Jackson, 7th U.S. This took place in a time before efforts were made to speed up gameplay, such as the addition of the shot clock. Charles Hodge, seminary professor. On November 22, 1950, the Lakers were leading until the fourth quarter, when the Pistons pulled ahead to win 19 to 18. Hodge, seminary professor. As the Minneapolis Lakers, the team holds the record for the lowest-scoring NBA game ever played along with the Fort Wayne Pistons. A. 2004-05 Record: 34-48.

A. NBA Championships: 1949, 1950, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1972, 1980, 1982, 1985, 1987, 1988, 2000, 2001, 2002. President. National Basketball League Championship: 1948. Benjamin Harrison, 23rd U.S. Logo Design: A gold basketball, with purple text "LOS ANGELES LAKERS" superimposed. Katherine Harris, Florida Secretary of State during the 2000 election crisis and current congresswoman (R). Official Colors: Purple (Pantone 526) and Gold (Pantone 123) (Alternate Color: Laker Blue).

John Glenn, Astronaut, United States Senator. Former Arena: Great Western Forum. Mel Watt, Congressman from North Carolina and Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus. Home Arena: Staples Center. Jay Rockefeller, junior United States Senator from West Virginia. Formerly known as: Detroit Gems (1946-1947), Minneapolis Lakers (1947-60). Lamar Alexander, junior United States Senator from Tennessee. Founded: 1946 in National Basketball League, joined NBA in 1948.

Bill Frist, current Senate Majority Leader. Eisenhower, 34th President. Dwight D. Secretary of State in the Eisenhower Administration.

John Foster Dulles, U.S. Brian DePalma, film director; raised as a Presbyterian. President. Grover Cleveland, 22nd and 24th U.S.

Vice-President under Adams and Jackson. Calhoun, U.S. John C. Aaron Burr, co-founder of Princeton University.

The Rev. Vice-President under Jefferson. Aaron Burr, U.S. Frederick Buechner, author of fantasy novels and non-fiction religious books.

President. James Buchanan, 15th U.S. Presidential nominee for the Democratic Party. William Jennings Bryan of the famous Scopes "Monkey Trial" in Tennessee 1925 and three times U.S.

Vice-President under Buchanan. Breckinridge, U.S. John C. Representative; conservative Republican from Texas.

Dick Armey, U.S.

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