Friday, February 24, 2012

My Official Renunciation of the PCUSA

Dear Session Members,

In the near 15 years I've been a member of Westminster, I've seen a number of changes and many people come and go. Through God's grace alone, I've been taught many valuable spiritual and life lessons and I've seen much which reinforced what I'd learned prior to joining the WPC family.  I cannot tell you how much I've learned about human nature,through the milieu of how I've been warmly perceived and dealt with in many instances and, at times, deliberately mischaracterized.

At times, we are placed into situations where the outcome bears precious little resemblance to fairness. The elect are reminded in Calvin's Institutes, Vol 3 that “the procedure of divine justice is too high to be scanned by human measure". To this end, I thank God for allowing my faith to be subjected to such litmus tests, for they permanently arrested much of the convoluted and doctrinally wayward idealism I had hitherto entertained. My faith has been strengthened in ways that my powers of speech are unable to forensically depict and for this, again, I praise and thank God in Christ.

Upon several junctures, I was solicited by members of the session and diaconate to reach out to those who withdrew from congregational life. I heard charges of cliquishness, economics with the truth and hypocrisy against certain people and tendencies, over and over again. Many young people especially have levied allegations of the flagrant applications of double standards and deceptively selective morality. These were not blanket charges, I observed. On the contrary, these applied to certain cabals of influence, busy bodies and aspersion casters that have deliberately-at times capriciously-mocked the sanctity, integrity and unanimity of the church and its governance. Often I would respond by very correctly pointing out that these malefactions in no way accurately portray the culture at Westminster, in totality.

For years I thought Westminster to be a rudder. Indeed, a beacon which could easily weather the maelstrom that has enveloped the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Eventually, it would become painfully clear that said charges were neither disjointed nor completely devoid of merit. In Protestant Rome, the reformer John Calvin said that "Church is composed not only of the elect, but of the polluted dregs of society". The sageness of Calvin's observation would become all too frightfully self-revelatory in my interactions with those who cleverly portrayed themselves as champions of traditional orthodoxy-not to mention friends of mine. The vignettes I've observed which validate the assertions of those who've left include, but are not limited to:

·          An unwavering intolerance for tobacco being exhibited by many of the same people who exhaustively and disingenuously endeavor to mainstream or rationalize everything from heresy to philandering to harlotry to even illicit drug use.

·          An inordinate emphasis on forgiveness and tolerance  being extended to any and all, save those who wish to cling to the classical, traditional articles of the Reformed faith.

·          Dismissal of the acrostic T.U.L.I.P.; which outlines the essential tenets of our faith as anachronistic, if not potentially derisive. While at the same time, the use of hemp is portrayed as some kind of benign maturation rite. Was it ever considered that such a casual portrayal could be viewed as a tacit endorsement to engage in the use of drugs by the youth at Westminster?

·          Scriptural and catechetical references being subjected to all manner of vulgar conjectural appropriation; in the hope that the true meaning will be taken out of context for the benefit of sheer humor and mockery. The "leaders" of WPC who endeavored this shrewish and impious game know well who they are. In an attempt to advance themselves socially, they thus engaged-only to make themselves look immature, cuckolded, hermaphroditical and sacrilegious in the end. I concede culpability freely in this matter; as I failed to heed the admonition of the Savior to "not cast my pearls before swine".

·          "Gentlemen" bragging about carnal conquests they've made in the church are held up as paragons of virtuous churchmanship and rectitude. While those with legitimate aims are often scoffed at or tromped! I've seen it all too often...I've felt the effects first hand! To this end, I could go as far as to name a beautiful young child who was maliciously mislabeled the "cause" of her family's discord in an attempt to veil the malefactions of the former. I believe there to be a special seating section, along the banks of the river Styx, for "adults" who engage in charades such as these!

·          Conveying the courageous struggle of a Catholic priest's terminal illness, while regarding the death of Rev Dr. D James Kennedy not even worthy of an exegetical footnote. The reason I was given is that the Presbyterian Church in America excludes women from sessional, diaconal and ministerial duties and paying any tribute to Dr Kennedy would be offensive to those with feminist views at WPC. Last time I checked, the Roman Catholic Church held to the same strictures. Why the double standard, I asked. I never received a coherent answer.

·         The implementation of a la carte Scriptural emphasis and the regularity of making one's sins into the shape OF the Cross; as opposed to laying them AT the Cross. Christ's call for the elect to repent has been just short of criminalized, completely.

To my view, these are not isolated incidents or tendencies. Rather, they are inextricably interwoven; as they are variables in the foul calculus of Scriptural and moral declension pandemic in mainline Protestantism in this quarter of the Earth. They underscore the enshrinement of latent Guevarist schematics that have led to the balkanization of this once hale and hearty denomination. As long as proclivities such as the above remain standardized at Westminster and as long as WPC remains with the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), it will mirror the denomination in a precipitous cascade into irrelevance.

Accordingly, after much prayer and plaintive deliberation, I have determined that continuing the endeavor of proclaiming and defending the true Reformed faith, while within the walls of the P.C.U.S.A., is neither a spiritually healthy nor politically viable option. As earlier intimated, this issue goes well beyond Amendment 10-A and nFOG. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) died quite some time ago and the aforementioned enactments from Louisville are merely part of the natural process of putrefaction. My sojourn in this denomination has indeed run its course and any further attempt on my part to seek redress for the various and sundry ails and incongruities in the faith will prove but an exercise in futility.

 I therefore repudiate the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) as a horrific cauldron of apostasy and declare my 1993 installation to the diaconate to be null and void. I renounce the jurisdiction thereof and hereby remand the Session of Westminster Presbyterian Church to immediately remove my name from its roster and mailing list. I declare my ties to the denomination to be now, henceforth and forever severed. I will neither seek nor accept discourse in the liturgical vein nor attend any liturgical engagement under the auspices of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), apart from the occurrence of a wedding or funeral, at any time in the future.

In closing, may God's benison be with the remnant that remains unimbrued by the godless tendencies of liberalism, reckless secularism and moral relativism. I pray that God will provide the respite and moral clarity needed to maintain their vital focus on Christ, His Father's Word and the historic confessions of our faith. There are doubtlessly those who will view this letter as a victory of sorts. As disheartening and as sick as that is, may Almighty God grant them discernment and mercy as well.

Farewell, Eric Wells