Claremore Daily Progress


October 14, 2011

Enid Presbyterians voting on future

ENID — Historically, churches have led the way on social issues, providing guidance to Christians on matters of conscience and social importance, referring to the Scripture.

But when a church or denomination is divided, it can cause extreme feelings within the denomination. Such is the case with Enid First Presbyterian Church, whose members will vote Sunday after the 10:45 a.m. morning service whether to leave the Presbyterian Church USA or stay.

The main issue reportedly is the Presbyterian Church USA’s stance on ordination of gay ministers. A number of Protestant denominations currently struggle with the issue, but it has come to a head in the Presbyterian church.

An advisory committee has recommended the Enid church leave the Presbyterian Church USA.

However, one member said Amendment 10A, which is at the heart of the controversy, merely states the Presbyterian Church will return to the policy pre-1996, which says local congregations get to decide who they will or will not ordain. No church will be forced to call a gay pastor, the member said.

There is controversy in the church over whether the church should ordain an avowed gay minister.

In the Enid First Presbyterian Church’s October newsletter, the Rev. Roy Schneider announced Sunday’s vote. The vote will be a private yes or no vote by members of the congregation on whether to stay in the Presbyterian Church USA. In the newsletter Schneider said the reason for the vote is because the church needs to know the true number on each side of the issue before members can determine how to proceed. The Presbytery, the governing body, has agreed to the vote.

If the vote reveals a large majority wants to leave the Presbyterian Church USA, church leaders will work with the Administrative Council toward what Schneider called a “gracious dismissal,” he said in the October newsletter.

“That would mean beginning negotiations that would allow the local church to keep its buildings and other assets as they are dismissed to another reformed denomination,” Schneider said in the newsletter.

If the vote reveals a large majority wants to remain in the church,  the debate is over, he said. If there is a close split the local church “may take the Presbytery up on its generous offer to pay for a third-party mediator to help us move forward,” Schneider said in the newsletter. Further talks with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church have been suspended until after the vote.

Schneider is remaining neutral on the issue and urged church members to vote their theology.

A report in the newsletter from the advisory committee recommended leaving the Presbyterian Church USA. Doug Frantz, a member of that committee, declined comment Thursday. Other members of the committee are Jason Reid, Dewey King, Jed Dillingham and Cathy Stocker.

“We do not want to divide over this issue. It might take a miracle for us to have a united front and all stay together, but we’re calling for one,” the committee said it its report.

The committee also pointed out the Presbytery lays claim to all of the church’s property and endowment money if members vote to leave the PCUSA; however, committee members said they hope the Presbytery will negotiate if there is a large majority vote.

“Many people of great faith and conviction want to stay in the PCUSA. Those people can join the majority who wish to leave in order to keep the congregation intact as it searches for a future,” the committee said.

Schneider would not comment for this story, nor would other members contacted by the News & Eagle.

Text Only
  • Silent Auction Saturday at First Presbyterian Church Claremore

    First Presbyterian Church Claremore will host a Silent Auction from 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday, July 19.
    All items remaining in the two houses on 5th Street —105 and 109 E. 5th Street — will be auctioned off, among them, light fixtures, doors, cabinets, shelving, flooring, and more.

    July 18, 2014

  • First Presbyterian Church hosts all-church garage sale

    The First Presbyterian Church of Claremore will host an annual all-church garage sale, 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Friday, June 6 and 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, June 7, inside the Family Life Center.

    June 3, 2014

  • ROCOR icon ‘Wonder-working’ Kursk-Root icon presented at local parish

    The holy Kursk-Root icon of the Sign made its way to Saint Brigit Orthodox Christian Church Friday during a tour among churches within the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (ROCOR) Diocese of Mid-America.

    April 10, 2014 2 Photos

  • First Presbyterian Church First Presbyterian Church celebrates 125 years

    For the past 125 years, First Presbyterian Church has served as a beacon to the faithful of Rogers County, bearing witness to more than a century of changes to the world around it.

    April 4, 2014 1 Photo

  • On a Mission
    A group of Destiny Life Church members hosted a garage sale beginning Thursday to raise money for a mission trip to Jinja, Uganda. 

    March 22, 2014

  • Claremore church to host Watoto Children’s Choir

    Eastern Hills Baptist Church will host the Watoto Children’s Choir in Claremore this month, bringing the message of hope and transformation to the people of Rogers County.

    March 2, 2014

  • Claremore Ministerial Alliance offers Lenten services, lunches

    Where can one go, worship the Lord, have a delicious lunch, and be out in the space of a lunch hour? The answer is the annual Lenten series of services and lunches sponsored by the Claremore Area Ministerial Alliance.

    March 2, 2014

  • Claremore Nazarene Church to host Guy Penrod, Isaacs

    Claremore Nazarene Church will be hosting artists Guy Penrod and the Isaacs later this month for a weekend of gospel music.

    August 16, 2013

  • Charles Graham returns to Claremore for concert

    Washington Baptist Church, northeast of Claremore, will be hosting music evangelist Charles Graham in concert at 10:45 a.m. Sunday, July 14.
    A fellowship dinner and fish fry will follow.

    July 12, 2013

  • HIEHLE - Stop Signs and Red Lights

    Have you ever run a red light or stop sign? If you have, it was probably not something you meant to do or want to repeat. You didn’t mean to, but maybe you were distracted or focused elsewhere.
    Then, as you realized your error, your heart skipped a beat. Hopefully, an accident did not occur.

    July 12, 2013


Do you prefer the warm summer weather of 2013 or the mild rainy weather we are currently experiencing?

Hot/Dry Summer
Mild/Wet Summer
I prefer any season but Summer.
I don't have an opinion.
     View Results
Featured Ads
AP Video
Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites