I have been posting the continuing decline of the mainline denominations in the United States. Presbyterians, Episcopalians, Methodists, United Church of Christ, who were once the dominant groups of Protestants with big impact on America, have become sideline churches, dwindling each year. While several factors are involved, a turn to liberal doctrines is the common thread.

Here is an item from about a year ago that I overlooked before. It is a call from the Calvin Synod of the United Church of Christ (UCC) for congregations of that denomination to withold monies from the denomination because of resolutions adopted at the previous national meeting. Here.

Here are the resolutions:
"THEREFORE LET IT BE RESOLVED, that the Twenty-fifth General Synod of the United Church of Christ affirms equal marriage rights for couples regardless of gender and declares that the government should not interfere with couples regardless of gender who choose to marry and share fully and equally in the rights, responsibilities and commitment of legally recognized marriage; and...

LET IT BE FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Twenty-fifth General Synod calls upon congregations, after prayerful biblical, theological, and historical study, to consider adopting Wedding Policies that do not discriminate against couples based on gender;"

Here is the call to action portion of the Calvin Synod communication and more thoughts below.

We encourage your congregation to voice its disapproval to your local church board and pastor, expressing dissatisfaction that your church is associated with this type of scandal and repudiation of the over 3,000 year understanding of God's Scripture as the result of our current UCC leadership.

We encourage your congregation to voice its disapproval to your Association offices that this policy, counter to God's will and commandments, and counter to stability and order in the family, should be endorsed and propagated by your church leadership using your financial contributions offered in good faith for the mission of Jesus Christ.

We encourage your congregation to begin withholding ALL financial contributions to your Association and your Conference if they do not abandon implementation of this resolution as part of their ongoing work.

We encourage your congregation to begin withholding ALL financial contributions to the UCC until the current direction changes. Please continue to forward Designated Mission donations!

We encourage your congregation not to be run out of your own church by those who have performed a "coup" and hijacked the UCC. The heritage of the Congregational, Christian, Evangelical and Reformed Churches is in no way represented by those who now "claim as their own" this heritage.

If local congregations do not speak up, if we vote with our feet and leave the UCC, we will be making a terrible mistake. We will be leaving a fellowship of Christians who have served the Lord for hundreds of years. We will be leaving behind small congregations that are unable to determine their own future. We will be abandoning the wonderful, rich heritage of the Congregational, Christian, Evangelical and Reformed Churches, leaving it in the hands of persons who are "proud to claim as their own" the heritage on paper, but not in practice. And we will also be leaving the resources, the generous gifts of our ancestors, to be used by the current leadership to promote an issue which is absolutely contrary to what our forefathers believed and stood for, what we still believe today, and the beliefs of the Christian Church throughout the ages.

Yours in Christ's service,

Rt. Rev. Koloman K. Ludwig, Bishop

Conference Minister, Calvin Synod Conference

October, 2005

The Calvin Synod of the UCC is a non-geographic Synod containing congregations with Hungarian Reformed background. The website is here.

If anyone is near Cleveland, you may be interested in this:
OCTOBER 14, 2006
100th Anniversary Celebrations & Commemoration of 1956 Revolution's 50th Anniversary at the West Side Hungarian Reformed Church, Cleveland, Ohio, on October 14, 2006. Our plans include a thanksgiving bilingual worship service, a wreath-laying ceremony, a festive concert and a banquet. We will also publish an Anniversary booklet.

The 1956 Revolution is, of course, the uprising by Hungarian patriots against Soviet domination. After bloody fighting the rebellion was crushed.

Previous posts on Mainline to Sideline:
first, and second, and third, and fourth and fifth.