The Voice of a Congregation on Faith & Politics: Nauraushaun Presbyterian Church, Pearl River, NY
In the brief statement that follows, a congregation first lifts up key values—not policies or positions—and then calls out divisive rhetoric. They go to scriptural themes and the Book of Confessions. We would note the very good 1983 report by the Church on Reformed Faith and Politics, which was accompanied by a book of essays by Presbyterian ethicists and historians, and the more recent social witness policy Lift Every Voice: Democracy, Voting Rights, and Electoral Reform, which provides guidance and a Reformed understanding of the political process. The 2016 Assembly further updated our position in light of recent Supreme Court rulings on voting rights and financial contributions to campaigns (A study guide for congregations on these issues can be found here).
Nauraushaun Presbyterian Church Speaks on Faith and Politics
During this election season, the Session of the Nauraushaun Presbyterian Church has been called by the Spirit to speak publicly of its faith in the midst of politics. In these days, we think all who seek to lead the state need to hear more from the church.
This church values social justice, as commanded by both Testaments. This church values love, as commanded by both Testaments. This church values compassion for the stranger, as commanded by both Testaments.
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) of which Nauraushaun Presbyterian Church is a member congregation, holds as authoritative “A Brief Statement of Faith”, adopted by the church in the early 1990s. Its first affirmation is: “In life and in death we belong to God.” Belonging to God, who creates women and men in the image of God, we reject political rhetoric that intends to divide, rather than unite, human beings. Belonging to God, we reject fear as lack of faith in the love, power, and justice of the Ultimate Holy One. Belonging to God, we reject any and every ideology that lacks humility and grace toward others.
We cite with enthusiastic conviction these lines from “A Brief Statement of Faith”:
“In a broken and fearful world, the Spirit gives us courage to pray without ceasing, to witness among all peoples to Christ as Lord and Savior, to unmask idolatries in Church and culture, to hear the voices of peoples long silenced, and to work with others for justice, freedom, and peace.”
This is how we intend to live, pray, and vote.