Trying to explain our Christian beliefs in a web page or two is a pretty daunting task. It's also a fairly simple one.
We love the Lord God. We know Jesus as God's living, earthly embodiment. We experience, and are guided by, God's Holy Spirit.
We acknowledge the Bible as the inspired and authoritative Word of God.
We strive to love the Lord our God with all our hearts, minds and souls, and to love our neighbors.
We practice baptism and celebrate communion.
And we seek to share the Good News and make disciples of all.
That's the simple explanation. Join us for worship some Sunday and you'll find we're a lively and literate group, full of faith, joyful in worship, active in ministry and mission, diverse in opinion.
We are anything but "frozen" chosen, as Presbyterians are often jokingly referred to. And that--our being Presbyterians--raises the more complex explanation of our beliefs.
As Presbyterians, two things make us distinctive. (1) We embrace a pattern of beliefs, born in the 16th Century, known as Reformed theology. And (2) we adhere to a unique form of church government that emphasizes active leadership and representation from both ministers and members, male and female.
Yes, We're Those "Predestination" People
The idea of predestination is one which has been associated with the Presbyterian church for centuries, and rightfully so as it is at the core of our Reformed theology. It is, admittedly, a complex issue…often misunderstood even by Presbyterians. But the simple explanation is, as Presbyterians, we believe we are justified (saved) by Christ, not by doing good deeds or actions, but rather by the preordained Grace of God.
Indeed, the doctrine of predestination reminds us that God is free and gracious, and that there is nothing we, as mortals, can do to "earn" God's favor. Rather, our justification is a gracious gift which comes from God alone. It kindles our faith and enables us to choose God, because God first chose us.
To be sure, our beliefs are more complex than this simple overview. Anchored in Old and New Testament truths, they are both rich and dynamic. For an excellent and thorough explanation of Presbyterianism, you are encouraged to visit the "Presbyterian 101" section of the Presbyterian Church (USA) website where you can find our denomination's Brief Statement of Faith.
Or visit with us any Sunday and experience our faith in person. We'd love to have you join us, whether for a single Sunday or a lifetime.
God comes to us in free and undeserved favor in the person of Jesus Christ who lived, died, and rose for us that we might belong to God and serve Christ in the world. Following Jesus, Presbyterians are engaged in the world and in seeking thoughtful solutions to the challenges of our time.
Presbyterians affirm that God comes to us with grace and love in the person of Jesus Christ, who lived, died, and rose for us so that we might have eternal and abundant life in him. As Christ’s disciples, called to ministry in his name, we seek to continue his mission of teaching the truth, feeding the hungry, healing the broken, and welcoming strangers. God sends the Holy Spirit to dwell within us, giving us the energy, intelligence, imagination, and love to be Christ’s faithful disciples in the world.
More than two million people call the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) their spiritual home. Worshiping in 10,000 Presbyterian congregations throughout the United States, they engage the communities in which they live and serve with God’s love.
To find out more about this dynamic and thriving denomination, come to the PCUSA main website.