Assembly Takes Exceptions to MNA's Minutes

Colorado Springs, CO (June 12, 1997)--In reviewing the work of the Mission to North America (MNA) Committee, General Assembly took three exceptions to its minutes.
The first was that a teaching elder's status was changed at several points without the concurrence of his presbytery. "This follows from BCO 20-1 and the precedent of the 23rd General Assembly with regard to the changes in terms of call for missionaries. . . . This is especially serious in [the October 1996 minutes] where MNA 'will dissolve [a TE's] pastoral relationship immediately' if a support deficit continues."
The second is that "there is no evidence in the minutes that the Committee ever saw or approved the 'Report of the Committee on Mission to North America,' nor that they authorized anyone else to write or approve the report. If it is a committee report it needs to be adopted by the Committee. (Robert's Rules 50)."
[This exception may be particularly relevant, given the nature of some of the statements in the MNA report. In a section on Multicultural Church Planting, the report states that the multicultural church planter "must not eliminate the offense of the Gospel. The cross is an offense, a skandalon. What the Bible has clearly and absolutely taught, he cannot soft pedal or discard. If he does, he has not adapted to the culture, he has capitulated. For example, if he has a congregation of rich people, and he never speaks of social justice, he eliminates a Biblical skandalon." What is meant by "social justice" in a context in which rich people are singled out is never explained.--Ed.]
The third exception is that the Committee has someone serving as Secretary who is not a member of the Committee.