The Presbyterian Church (USA) often refers to itself as a connectional church. It is one church, governed by presbyters, and gathered in councils. These councils are sessions, presbyteries, synods, and the General Assembly.
The Presbytery of Lake Michigan (PLM), along with 10 other presbyteries, are part of the Synod of the Covenant. The 223rd General Assembly, convened in 2018, appointed an Administrative Commission to address allegations of disorder in the Synod of the Covenant.
This Administrative Commission was formed in 2018 and since then has conducted oral interviews with many individuals, requested and received written testimony, read thousands of pages of documents, and attended meetings of the Synod and some of its committees.
Staff members, both current and past staff, of the Presbytery of Lake Michigan, were interviewed and asked for written statements.
On Wednesday, February 12, 2020, Fran Lane-Lawrence, the Stated Clerk/Transitional Co-Leader, and Cal Bremer, Transitional Co-Leader, were in attendance in Toledo, Ohio as the Administrative Commission reviewed its findings and requested feedback on options under consideration to address its findings.
On Saturday, February 15, 2020, staff members of the constituent presbyteries were informed of the decision by the Administrative Commission. In brief, the decision led to a number of actions and plans.
- The Administrative Commission has voted to assume original jurisdiction of the Synod of the Covenant.
- New officers have been elected from among the membership of the Administrative Commission.
- A professional mediator will be engaged to assist with reconciliation and healing.
- Staff members of the Synod of the Covenant were terminated and granted severance packages.
- Synod programs and operations are suspended for 6 months.
- Administrative review and judicial process will continue to be provided.
- Synod Assemblies for March, August and November 2020 have been postponed.
- A communication process will be established.
You can find more details in the PC(USA) announcement below.
We ask your prayers for all those involved in this momentous action. Our God is faithful and will help us on this leg of the journey into an unknown territory.
If you desire additional details, please contact:
- Fran Lane-Lawrence, Stated Clerk/Transitional Co-Leader, at email@example.com
- Cal Bremer, Transitional Co-Leader, at firstname.lastname@example.org