Thursday, December 18, 2008

EOP Speaks Out.

From Layman Letters: No one is helped by the reporting of misinformation. - Craig Hoster Attorney for Eastern Oklahoma Presbytery and elder, Presbyterian Church (USA)

From EOP website: (News/Kirk)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - December 15, 2008


The settlement agreed upon among Eastern Oklahoma Presbytery, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and Kirk of the Hills Corporation was concluded today with the closing of the sale of the church property by Eastern Oklahoma Presbytery to Kirk of the Hills Corporation. The judgment entered by Judge Jefferson Sellers in the long-running litigation filed by Kirk of the Hills in Tulsa County District Court has been released, and the appeal filed in the Oklahoma Supreme Court is being dismissed, in accordance with the settlement agreement reached among the parties. The church property, including real estate valued at $7.8 Million, plus hundreds of thousands of dollars in personal property, was sold to Kirk of the Hills Corporation for $1.75 Million.

"We have said since the day Kirk of the Hills filed this litigation against us, that there are no winners until the matter is resolved," stated Craig Hoster, attorney for Eastern Oklahoma Presbytery. "Despite the fact that the Court granted judgment in favor of the Presbytery, we have continuously sought resolution. Today, resolution was achieved."

Dr. Gregory Coulter, General Presbyter for the Presbytery, said, "We are relieved that this legal process is concluded and that both the Presbytery and the Kirk of the Hills may now focus again primarily on sharing the Gospel with a world in need of Good News. We wish our brothers and sisters at the Kirk every blessing in their service."

For further information, please contact:

Dr. Gregory Coulter
General Presbyter
Eastern Oklahoma Presbytery

ED: I find Craig Hoster's letter to be accurate - as far as it goes. As a lawyer, he does not address the underlying cause of the trouble, which is ecclesiastic. The "law" has been misused at the national level (AI's). The GA is a broken process.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Had the PCUSA followed its own "official" policies in the BOO regarding Scripture and sexual conduct the Kirk and many other churches would have felt no need to withdraw.

It has become increasingly apparent that no matter what the Bible says or how the people in the pews feel, the leadership of the PCUSA is going to remain ultra-liberal and try to impose its views upon those who remain in its clutches. Those who disagree or want to leave will be threatened with the enforcement of the property trust clause.

In another decade or so when most of the small, aging congregations are no longer able to support a pastor and maintain their buildings perhaps the PCUSA will face reality.

The denomination can't continue to lose members at the rate of 50,000 or more each year. The PCUSA is bleeding to death at an alarmingly rapid rate.

WIth the Kirk gone, EOP has only one large church (1st Pres. Tulsa) and a few medium churches. When one looks at the stats only 2 churches in EOP averaged more than 200 in Sunday worship for 2007--1st Pres. Tulsa with 771 and 1st Pres. Bartlesville with 207. Good Shepherd in Bartlesville with 177 and St. James in Jenks with 169 were next.

Over half the EOP churches have fewer than 50 members and dismal attendance, and several listed on the EOP website have been dissolved.

The future looks pretty bleak for both the PCUSA and EOP. Both are definitely at a crossroads and could very well die out in the next couple of decades unless a dramatic shift toward preaching the gospel and evangelism becomes primary.

The PCUSA-EOP chapter of the Kirk's history has come to a close. It's time to more on. I know there are some bitter feelings on both sides and that some of the Kirk members wanted to continue the court fight, but the vote was to settle.

It's over, brothers and sisters. The past is behind us and can't be changed. Let's be about the carrying out of the Great Commission. That is our calling, that is our purpose--nothing is more important than telling those who are lost in sin of God's offer of forgiveness and eternal life in heaven through Jesus Christ.

May God pour out His healing Holy Spirit upon us all as we celebrate the birth of His Son next week.

Peggy A. Alexander
Kirk of the Hills

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