Thursday, August 20, 2015

Proposed Overtures for 2016 GA

PEC Supports Overtures for 2016 General Assembly

Presbyterians for Earth Care is consistently grateful for your work in environmental and social justice efforts.  One way to be proactive is in preparing overtures to be brought to our General Assembly (GA).

The next GA will be June 18-26, 2016 in Portland, Oregon, and PEC will be supporting many overtures. Among them are overtures to
  • sell investments in fossil fuels (divest) and reinvest in clean energy,
  • raise a voice against the fracking industry that destroys land, water and the way that people live in North Dakota,
  • stop the use of America’s railroads for transporting oil through vulnerable communities and putting them in the “blast zone,” and
  • add ecological language to the Book of Order.

Additionally there will be an opportunity to hear the follow-up study and recommendations regarding the Precautionary Principle overture passed in 2014. It was sent to a committee to help keep the church informed about the importance of being proactive for environmental and social safety in the manufacture of goods.

One new overture coming from the Presbytery of New Castle recommends adding the phrase “caring for God’s creation” to The Ministry of Members section of the Book of Order to encourage all Presbyterians to care for God’s creation. According to the rationale for the recommendation (together both make up an overture), “the Bible, our Reformed tradition expressed in the confessions and the Book of Order, and the latest scientific research all support the need for this addition.”

The full text of the overture with six pages of background information can be found online and includes summaries of 
  • the biblical basis by Dr. William P. Brown, Professor of Old Testament Columbia Theological Seminary
  • six Reformed Confessions,
  • Book of Order references,
  • past GA actions, and
  • latest scientific news.

Please consider asking your Session or Presbytery Mission Committee to bring this overture to your Presbytery for concurrence. For information about how to submit an overture click here or email Bruce Gillette with questions.

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