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Why I Am A Presbyterian

Jan 7, 2008
With so many types of Christian churches available today how do you choose the faith community that best fits your individual beliefs and needs? The best way to do this is by simple visiting the different churches. Not only attend a regular service but also take part in some other activity as well. Plus you should talk with members to get a sense of the individuals that make up that church community. In order to help others who are looking for a church community I would like to share just why I am a Presbyterian.

One of the primary reasons I am a Presbyterian can be summed up in one word -- tradition. My family has long been Presbyterians and that was the church that I was raised and married in. Whenever I have moved it is always the Presbyterian Church in the community that I visited first and because of my own personal tradition that is the church that I feel most comfortable with. Aside from my own personal tradition with the Presbyterian Church I also enjoy being part of the larger Presbyterian tradition which can trace its routes back to the earliest Protestant Reformation. While the Presbyterian Church is a living body that is constantly changing and evolving it also has a long tradition.

Mission is another important part of Presbyterianism. Presbyterians have long built schools and hospitals in parts of the world where health care and education are lacking. This tradition continues today. Presbyterians attitude toward mission work is not to convert by offering a helping hand to those in need but rather to demonstrate what it means to be a Christian by helping others. We hope to spread the word of God's love by our actions rather than our words. Presbyterians walk the walk while some other Christians simply talk the talk. This is why you find Presbyterian churches in unlikely locations such as remote villages in Africa, cities in China, and small communities in Appalachia. Because the Presbyterian Church came to offer help to that community then the people living there were inspired to become Presbyterians.

Evangelism, or rather the understatement of it, is a key component of being a Presbyterian. Presbyterians believe that you will know we are Christians by our love. I am always suspicious of someone who needs to tell me they are a Christian. I believe that I should know this by your actions and deeds. Presbyterians believe we are a Christian nation but strongly believe in separation of church and state. While many Presbyterians might be community leaders they hold their faith and their leadership apart from each other. Our witness is rooted in the gospel ministries of preaching, teaching, and healing, and in Christ's example of advocacy for the poor, the hungry and the oppressed. Presbyterians believe they are already saved by Jesus Christ and so can focus their life on helping others rather than saving themselves.

Tradition, mission, and evangelism are the reasons why I am a Presbyterian and why other Christians should at least consider joining this community of faith when seeking out a new church.
About the Author
Read more articles by Renaissance Woman Deanna Mascle at http://deannamascle.com
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