Posted by: reformedmusings | January 28, 2008

TE Wilkins Leaves the PCA

Although rumored last night, confirmation has been received by greenbaggins that Auburn Avenue Presbyterian Church (AAPC) voted yesterday to leave the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA) for the Confederation of Reformed Evangelical Churches (CREC). The CREC assigned them as a mission church under Grace Covenant Church in Nacogdoches, Texas, pastored by Randy Booth. The CREC is, for all intents and purposes, the home base for Federal Visionists.

Update: TE Wilkins confirms (HT: Heidelblog)

Update 2: Auburn Avenue PC updated their website to indicate their change in affiliation. Their comments were brief and gracious. We pray the peace of Christ for them in their new home.

Since no indictment had yet been completed or served for TE Wilkins, this means that he was not “under process” in the PCA and leaves as an officer in good standing. Technically, Louisiana Presbytery must formally dismiss Wilkins, but I don’t thing anyone sees that as a barrier. Wilkins does leave under a cloud, however, with an indictment pending based on the strong presumption of guilt that he is not in conformity with the Constitution of the PCA.

Since an indictment was pending before the PCA’s Standing Judicial Commission, leaving the PCA quickly was important for TE Wilkins. Had he not left before that indictment was completed and served, he would still have been tried in the PCA whether he wanted to leave or not (BCO 31-2, 32-1, and 38-3). It was just over a week ago that LAP plead guilty to Count 2 of their indictment and referred TE Wilkins to the SJC for trial, so Wilkins wasted no time in leaving.

In the end, this was the least painful outcome of a process that started about two years ago with a Memorial from Central Carolina Presbytery. Trials can be messy, and no matter how this one turned out, it would not have brought peace to the PCA in the short term. I believe that the PCA has acquitted itself well by following the strict processes in the Book of Church Order while striving to uphold the peace and purity of the church.

Many thanks to the courageous SJC members who did what was right and necessary in the face of vitriolic accusations from the Federal Vision fathers. And our prayers for AAPC and TE Wilkins–for their peace in the Lord and that they may eventually repent of their errors.

Just in case anyone forgot, LAP still has a pending trial for Count 1 of their indictment by the SJC due to their “not guilty” plea to that count. That trial will happen on 6 March unless they change their plea before then.

Even after this development, this thread over at greenbagginses contained a lot of fruitful discussion. HaigLaw, an LAP commissioner during the debate over their indictment, provided some good insight into their meeting as well as the evolving politics in LAP. His first-hand experience is a must read for anyone remotely interested in the overall issue at LAP. HaigLaw is a very gracious individual and I personally appreciate his participation in the discussion over at greenbagginses.

Lastly, there are a few other PCA Presbyteries that should be paying close attention to all this.

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  1. […] UPDATE #2: So says the CREC. PCA Ruling Elder Bob Mattes explains. […]


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