In almost every major denomination today laymen are showing more and more concern over the lessening of emphasis on the spiritual nature and message of the Church.
Church leaders have always solicited the interest and support of laymen. Some are now finding that many laymen have become restive about some programs they are being asked to support. Many feel their leaders are promoting activities outside the province of the Church, placing primary emphasis on secondary things, and seeking to reform society without the redemption of individuals.
Recently members of a Southern Presbyterian lay organization known as Concerned Presbyterians (address: 234 Biscayne Boulevard, Miami, Florida) met with members of another group within the denomination that represents a more liberal approach to the mission of the Church, particularly in the area of social action. The meeting was called by the moderator of the church.
Some ministers present expressed deep apprehension because Concerned Presbyterians is made up entirely of laymen. In reply the president of that group said frankly that this was necessary because ministers who joined might be subject to “ecclesiastical reprisals.” But a number of ministers are quietly helping the organization.
For about two years there has existed in the United Presbyterian Church a group called the Presbyterian Lay Committee, whose board is composed of some of America’s most distinguished Christian laymen and churchmen. In January this group (offices at 200 Fifth Avenue, New York City) began publishing a monthly magazine called The Presbyterian Layman, “edited for the entire membership of the United Presbyterian Church.” It is a “voice of the laity, expected to stimulate greater discussion in Church matters, ...1
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