City Church Houston goes ECO

Discussion in 'Church Office' started by Edward, Nov 12, 2017.

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  1. Edward

    Edward Puritanboard Commissioner

    City Church Houston, a PCA plant, has gone full egalitarian and jumped over the EPC to affiliate with ECO. While I'm disappointed that Redeemer New York appears to have rubbed off on Leo during his time working under Tim Keller there, I do appreciate that City Church has shown the integrity to leave the PCA unlike some of the churches that have tried to evangelize for liberalism in the denomination (I hope - I see that they plan to stay involved with RUF). I understand that some of the folks that came over from his former Houston church plant (Christ the King) are not happy with the move.

    The official comments of the church here:

    I've recommended Leo and City Church in the past; I withdraw any and all recommendations.
    • Informative Informative x 1
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  2. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    I saw complaints on Facebook about PCA funded plants going to other denominations after the benefit of such funding; was this what sparked that?
  3. Ask Mr. Religion

    Ask Mr. Religion Flatly Unflappable

    From the blog at the site:

    "The Holy Spirit has given gifts to every member of the body of Christ to use for the building up and care of the church, and there’s no evidence he’s distributed his gifts with gender differentiation."​
    "A plain reading of 1 Timothy 2 may seem to preclude women from positions of teaching and authority in the church, but on closer inspection the text becomes more ambiguous. It does not address “offices” within the church or ordination at all. The word often translated “authority” is found in the New Testament only here, which makes it much more difficult to arrive at a definitive understanding of this word that has a considerable range to its meaning. Based on its first century usage outside the New Testament, there’s no warrant for translating it “to exercise authority.” A better rendering would be “to dominate, to get one’s way.” The translation would then be, “I do not permit a woman to teach so as to gain mastery over a man” or “I do not permit a woman to teach with a view to dominating a man.” The term “silent” is better translated “quiet,” so the full verse would be “I do not permit a woman to teach a man in a dominating way, but to have a quiet demeanor.” An altogether different way to understand this text would be to recognize it as referring to household codes, not the role of women in the church. A perfectly acceptable way to translate the term “woman” is “wife” and “man” is “husband.” This understanding would better fit with the complex wording that follows (1 Timothy 2:13-15). If this is correct, this text most frequently used to defend the view that women should not occupy church office does not actually pertain to a women’s role in the church at all."​

  4. Edward

    Edward Puritanboard Commissioner

    I have no idea. I know several PCA plants in MNY went EPC a couple (?) of years ago.
  5. OPC'n

    OPC'n Puritan Board Doctor

    You know the saying, "You don't know what you have until you lose it."? Well, I have another saying, "You don't know what you don't have until you gain it.".

    They will be very sorry if they ever bring in women leaders. I had to live under such conditions when I was young and it was horrific. Women in authority in the workplace is a laborious trial for the employees, much less women in authority in the church. Not only does it go against God's law and should never be considered, but most will seriously regret their decision of allowing women to be in any type of authority in the's awful to have to deal with them.
  6. Jake

    Jake Puritan Board Junior

    If the only reason is egalitarianism, I wonder why they jumped straight to a basically non-confessional denomination. Out of churches that come from more conservative denominations, it seems the EPC is the place for still generally Reformed evangelicals who become egalitarian, the RCA for those who are more liberal leaning, and the ECO for those who are socially conservative but not necessarily consistently Reformed.
  7. Edward

    Edward Puritanboard Commissioner

    ECO is certainly stronger in Houston than is the EPC, so that may have been a factor. But it does appear that they have thrown confessionalism completely out the window.

    That may be true in some places, but that isn't what I've seen around here.
  8. Jake

    Jake Puritan Board Junior

    Gotcha. Around here, from visiting one ECO church and perusing the websites of several, social conservatism seems to be the only thing that distinguishes them from the PC(USA).
  9. Edward

    Edward Puritanboard Commissioner

    Most of them that I've seen left over homosexuality in the PCUSA, but they seemed fine with abortion and other social issues. The denomination does appear to be officially anti-abortion at this point. I'm not sure how long they are going to be able to make that work.

    Going back to the EPC issue - I looked at the web site for the most prominent EPC church in Houston. While it has women as deacons, all of the Elders appear to be male. So it could be that the EPC in that area isn't egalitarian enough for them.
  10. BG

    BG Puritan Board Junior


    That is the case with most of the PCA churches around here. It is very sad, I would love to attend the PCA across the street from my house, it would be so convenient.
  11. Doulos McKenzie

    Doulos McKenzie Puritan Board Freshman

    There is a PCA Church in Chattanooga that is EP and seems pretty confessional.
    Here is there info:

    Brainerd Hills Presbyterian Church

    6488 E Brainerd Road
    Chattanooga TN 37421
  12. BFG33

    BFG33 Inactive User

    That is very interesting my dear kid sister used to go there. She switched about two months ago.
  13. koenig

    koenig Puritan Board Freshman

    They're not exclusive psalmody, though they are psalm-predominant (one hymn and many psalms per service).
  14. kodos

    kodos Puritan Board Junior

    Sometimes in situations like these, they may have in mind a particular woman (women?) in the congregation that they really want to ordain and hence the jump to ECO.

    Just a possibility.
  15. Jake

    Jake Puritan Board Junior

    I don't wish to detract from this thread as it's not really related and I know Bill is familiar with this church, but BHPC uses exclusively Psalms after the call to worship (predominately the BPS and some from good selections in the TH) and will often use a non-Psalm before the call the call to worship. The eldership and membership are divided on the issue and this compromise was reached so that everyone could worship in good conscience. This is my general understanding from a non-member who has worshipped with the congregation a good many times.
  16. zsmcd

    zsmcd Puritan Board Freshman

    Are certain Presbyteries in the PCA allowing for the creation of the office of a deaconess? This PCA church in San Antonio (not sure if it is the same presbytery that City Church was in) that we were considering going to has three.
  17. Edward

    Edward Puritanboard Commissioner

    It is unlawful in the PCA to ordain women to office. Some churches circumvent the rule by not having any ordained deacons, and have men and women serve as deacons in an unordained role. I consider that unlawful as well, but doubt that the more liberal presbyteries would practice discipline. Then, there are churches that have ordained men assisted by unordained women that they call deaconesses (I would submit that this is unlawful, as well, as the BCO contemplates both men and women assisting the ordained deacons. If, however, they also have male deaconesses, that would be ok). Then, finally, there are churches that follow the rules.

    Without more info, I couldn't characterize the church you mentioned.
  18. Edward

    Edward Puritanboard Commissioner

    Oops. Skipped that one. The answer is 'no'. City was Metro Houston. San Antonio would be in South Texas along with Austin.
  19. Edward

    Edward Puritanboard Commissioner

    One more point about women deacons in the PCA. Early in my PB tenure, there was a PBer who basically called my a liar when I posted that there were women deacons in the PCA. I never did get a retraction or apology from him, even when I posted links to PCA church websites that listed the women under the heading 'Deacons'. I think he changed his screen name after that.
  20. BG

    BG Puritan Board Junior

    I am noticing that there are women with theological degrees on staff at a lot of PCA churches. They often have the title of director or coordinator, it seems odd to me to have women doing a job that an elder should be doing.
  21. TheOldCourse

    TheOldCourse Puritan Board Sophomore

    If you go by websites, the PCA is clearly neither a 2 or 3-office church anymore. You can restrict elder and even deacon to men and it's fine since there are countless other offices you can make up a title for and give someone a "ministry."
  22. BG

    BG Puritan Board Junior

    Will these men at city church be defrocked(I don’t want to call them ministers)?
  23. BG

    BG Puritan Board Junior

    Who shepherds the the shepherds in this case? Did no one see this coming, did anyone care? How much money was invested in this church plant? Wil they pay it back with interest? Will they be made a public example for all to see so that this does not become a trend? Is this a trend now?

    **** please pray for my denomination we are no better****
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2017
  24. chuckd

    chuckd Puritan Board Sophomore

    I recently moved and we visited a PCA church who had a sermon defending deaconesses. It was very high church so I was really surprised. Very strange dynamic.
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