In Other NAPARC Business
In other business, NAPARC discussed what to do with the residual funds from the Westminster Assembly Commemoration Fund. In 1993, in conjunction with the 350th anniversary of the meeting of the Westminster Assembly, NAPARC had sponsored a trip to Westminster Abbey in London and other historic spots in Britain. Various addresses given at Westminster Abby during the trip were published in a commemorative volume. Several thousand dollars were left over from the seed money which had been donated in order to get the Commemoration underway, and from sales of the book.
Several suggestions were put forward as to what to do with the excess funds. The Christian Reformed Church recommended that the money be used either to fund translation into English of Reformed works, such as Bavinck's Dogmatics, or to underwrite a North American conference "designed to encourage Reformed foundational thinking." The Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America suggested that the money be placed in the general fund. The Orthodox Presbyterian Church (OPC) suggested that the money be used to translate into Spanish the works of G. I. Williamson on the Westminster Standards.
David McPherson of the Reformed Church in the United States (RCUS) moved that the money be given to the Korean American Presbyterian Church (KAPC) for relief for the starving North Koreans. The OPC's Richard Barker asked if the KAPC could give any assurance that the money would really go where it is supposed to go? One of the KAPC representatives replied in the affirmative.
The OPC's Jack Peterson suggested that these start-up moneys were given as designated gifts, and if not used in that way should be returned. Mr. Van Baak of the CRC said: "the only thing that connects the availability [of the funds] and this tremendous need in North Korea is a confluence of events. I don't think it's the best way to handle the pressing needs in North Korea, which I think ought to be addressed separately from the . . . Westminster funds. I would suggest that, as an alternative, that the needs of the North Koreans and famine relief be met by generous contributions and offerings from the member congregations of the NAPARC churches. . . . It's just a handy convenience to link these two together. And I don't think it's really a just and fair and generous way, hearing of the enormity of this condition in North Korea." The CRC's David Engelhard stated, "I was given assurances there were no restrictions." He stated that at the 1994 NAPARC meeting there had been the sentiment that those moneys were given for "Reformed and Presbyterian advancement."
K. Eric Perrin of the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA) said that as the money was originally given for the Westminster celebration, perhaps the funds should be returned to the donors. Mark Bube of the OPC stated that his denomination's recommendation had been an effort "to keep it as close to the Commemoration as we could."
Dr. Bruce Stewart of the RPCNA moved that this matter
be referred back to the Council's Interim Committee for recommendation.
That motion carried, and the matter was, as at last year's NAPARC
meeting, for the moment laid to rest.
The Council gave its blessing to the Korean American
Presbyterian Church (KAPC) making an appeal to member churches
for help in feeding the North Koreans. The KAPC representatives
assured the delegates that the distribution of food would be done
in the name of Christ.
NAPARC decided to explore the possibility of having
a website on the internet, primarily for the posting of directory
information regarding the member denominations and their congregations.
The Rev. Jack Whytock of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian
Church (ARP) declared himself to be "very positively in favor"
of this proposal, particularly since it would not involve a tremendous
cost to NAPARC. However, Mark Bube of the Orthodox Presbyterian
Church (OPC) cautioned that "we don't want every Tom, Dick,
and Harry" being allowed "to hang their material on
the website." After a few moments of discussion, a motion
was made to refer this matter to a three-man committee, appointed
by the Chairman, to report next year regarding the feasibility
of establishing a webpage. The Council voted, unanimously, in
favor of that motion to refer.