About Presbyterians

                                                 

 

 

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Presbyterians are followers of Jesus Christ. The Presbyterian Church was founded on the ideals of leaders Martin Luther, John Calvin, and John Knox. Presbyterians are part of a church structure that is founded on a concept of democratic rule under the Word of God.

The word "Presbuteros" means elder, and refers to the custom of choosing leaders from among the wisest members of the church.

Authority in the Presbyterian Church resides with those who the congregation elects to serve.

  • The local leadership body is the Session. It is comprised of elders who serve as the chairpersons of different committees. The Session oversees the day to day work of the church. The Session approves the annual budget and makes many of the key decisions of the church. The Pastor is the moderator of the Session.

In the Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA), there are four governing bodies.

  • The Session: (local)
  • The Presbytery: (local chuches together form a Presbytery: all Utah Presbyterian churches are part of the Presbytery of Utah)
  • The Synod: (a regional body of several Presbyteries:  (the Presbytery of Utah is a member of the Synod of the Rocky Mountains)
  • The General Assembly: (the national governing body in Lousville, KY)

What do Presbyterians believe?

  God

  The Father, Creator of the Universe

  1st person of the Trinity

 

  Jesus Christ

  The Son of God, the incarnation of God on Earth

  2nd person of the Trinity

 

  Holy Spirit

  The presence of God in the world and in us as believers

  3rd person of the Trinity

 

  The Church

  The company of Christ’s followers

 

  Forgiveness of Sin

  Made possible by the crucifixion of Christ on the cross

  Life Everlasting

  Because of Jesus’ resurrection

 

  Because He lives, we live eternally too

 

  Bible

  The inspired Word of God

 

What We Believe

The Brief Statement of Faith which follows was adopted by the Presbyterian Church (USA) in 1983.  It serves as an excellent summary of the core beliefs of all PC(USA) churches.

In life and in death we belong to God.
Through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
the love of God,
and the communion of the Holy Spirit,
we trust in the one triune God, the Holy One of Israel,
whom alone we worship and serve.

We trust in Jesus Christ,
Fully human, fully God.
Jesus proclaimed the reign of God:
preaching good news to the poor
and release to the captives,
teaching by word and deed
and blessing the children,
healing the sick
and binding up the brokenhearted,
eating with outcasts,
forgiving sinners,
and calling all to repent and believe the gospel.
Unjustly condemned for blasphemy and sedition,
Jesus was crucified,
suffering the depths of human pain
and giving his life for the sins of the world.
God raised Jesus from the dead,
vindicating his sinless life,
breaking the power of sin and evil,
delivering us from death to life eternal.

We trust in God,
whom Jesus called Abba, Father.
In sovereign love God created the world good
and makes everyone equally in God's image
male and female, of every race and people,
to live as one community.
But we rebel against God; we hide from our Creator.
Ignoring God's commandments,
we violate the image of God in others and ourselves,
accept lies as truth,
exploit neighbor and nature,
and threaten death to the planet entrusted to our care.
We deserve God's condemnation.
Yet God acts with justice and mercy to redeem creation.
In everlasting love,
the God of Abraham and Sarah chose a covenant people
to bless all families of the earth.
Hearing their cry,
God delivered the children of Israel
from the house of bondage.
Loving us still,
God makes us heirs with Christ of the covenant.
Like a mother who will not forsake her nursing child,
like a father who runs to welcome the prodigal home,
God is faithful still.

We trust in God the Holy Spirit,
everywhere the giver and renewer of life.
The Spirit justifies us by grace through faith,
sets us free to accept ourselves and to love God and neighbor,
and binds us together with all believers
in the one body of Christ, the Church.
The same Spirit
who inspired the prophets and apostles
rules our faith and life in Christ through Scripture,
engages us through the Word proclaimed,
claims us in the waters of baptism,
feeds us with the bread of life and the cup of salvation,
and calls women and men to all ministries of the church.
In a broken and fearful world
the Spirit gives us courage
to pray without ceasing,
to witness among all peoples to Christ as Lord and Savior,
to unmask idolatries in Church and culture,
to hear the voices of peoples long silenced,
and to work with others for justice, freedom, and peace.
In gratitude to God, empowered by the Spirit,
we strive to serve Christ in our daily tasks
and to live holy and joyful lives,
even as we watch for God's new heaven and new earth,
praying, "Come, Lord Jesus!

With believers in every time and place,
we rejoice that nothing in life or in death
can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. Amen.