RE Ellis Smith presided over the Fifty-eighth Stated Meeting of the Louisiana Presbytery, held on Saturday, July 18, 1998, at the Auburn Avenue Presbyterian Church in Monroe, Louisiana. Mr. Jeff Steel, candidate for ordination as a teaching elder, preached to half of Presbytery from Psalm 100; and RE George Thompson of Westminster Presbyterian Church in Opelousas, LA, who was seeking licensure by Presbytery preached to the other half from Romans 1:1-17. After both men had preached, host pastor Steve Wilkins led Presbytery in worship and administered the sacrament of communion.
TE Ken Roth presented the Christian Education Committee report, stating that Mrs. Frank Horton's book on teaching the Shorter Catechism was being reprinted. He also reported that the Presbytery Men's Fall Retreat would be held at Rocky Creek Camp in Pineville, LA, October 16-17, 1998, in conjunction with the 59th Stated Meeting of Presbytery. TE Grover Gunn from Covenant Presbytery would lead a lecture-discussion format on the topic of six-day Creation. MSP to receive the report as information.
TE Jim Jones gave the report of the Commission to examine Mr. Christian Lewis as a ruling elder of
the Acadiana Presbyterian Church in Lafayette. The organization service for the congregation was scheduled for August 23rd. Mr. Wilkins reported on RE Lonn Oswalt's work with Christian Student Fellowship at Northeast Lousiana University in Monroe and at Louisiana Technical University in Ruston. Mr. Wilkins also informed Presbytery about the program at the R.L. Dabney Center for Theological Studies at Auburn Avenue Presbyterian Church in Monroe.
Presbytery instructed the newly-constituted Pastoral Care Committee "to maintain close contact with TE Dana Casey and the Session of Grace Presbyterian Church." The Committee was also instructed "to bring recommendations re TEs Cleve Chandler and Jim Meek to the October Stated Meeting."
RE Dale Peacock presented the report of the Sessional Records Committee. It was moved, seconded, and carried "to adopt the recommendation that an updated roll of communing and noncommuning members be maintained by each Session in its regular minutes."
During lunch, TE Pete Crews spoke about his missionary work in France and Switzerland.
TE Mark Duncan presented Mr. Jeff Steel and Mr. George Thompson for examination. Mr. Steel's internship program was accepted as completed. "Both men indicated that they had the same two exceptions to the Westminster Standards: a nonacceptance of exclusive psalmody and an acceptance of paedocommunion."
Presbytery appointed a commission to ordain and install Mr. Steel as pastor of the John Knox Church, Ruston, LA, at 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, July 26, 1998. Mr. Thompson was licensed to preach pending reception of a written copy of his sermon. Mr. Steel was added to the Presbytery Commission to ordain and install Mr. Duane Otto as associate pastor of the Delhi Presbyterian Church on August 2, 1998.
Presbytery nominated Dr. Douglas Kelly and Pastor David Hall to the Creation Study Committee of the General Assembly and communicated these nominations to the Stated Clerk. The court also sent a copy of the declaration by Westminster Presbytery to all Sessions for study and consideration. [At its April stated meeting, Westminster Presbytery had declared that a non-acceptance of six twenty-four hour day creation strikes at the fundamentals of the system of doctrine, and that it would not receive any man into the Presbytery who does not hold to creation in six literal days.-Ed.]
Mr. Duncan was dismissed to Mississippi Valley Presbytery, so that he could become Pastor of St. Paul Presbyterian Church in Jackson, MS.
TE Ken Roth brought the closing devotional from Psalm 145 and Psalm 19.
RE George T. Thompson, Stated Clerk