Friday, May 23, 2008

Presbyterian Heritage and Missions

If there is a single trait which serves to give to the Presbyterian Church in the United States a distinct character it is that of a Spirit of Missionary Enterprise which it has possessed from its very origin.
Unpublished history, “Standing Committee of Missions,” c. 1827.

According to the denominational the Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A. was the first Protestant denomination in the United States to organize a missions committee at the national level. In 1802, the General Assembly appointed seven members to the initial Standing Committee of Missions. The success of the committee and subsequent growth in mission work led to the organization of a permanent Board of Missions in 1815 and a separate Board of Foreign Missions in 1837. From age to age, Presbyterian mission work has touched the lives of people throughout the United States and the world. The statistics to the left show how in 2006 the PC(USA) had less than one-sixth the number of missionaries than in 1965. (From the April 08 edition of Presbyterians Today)

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