Statement from the Moderator about the GA221 Middle East Issues Committee

by Toya Richards Jackson

LOUISVILLE (PNS) – The Reverend Neal Presa, Moderator of the 220th General Assembly (2012) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), affirmed his moderator and vice moderator choices for the 14 committees of the 221st General Assembly, emphasizing a nonpartisan, objective selection process.

His assertion came on the heels of questions regarding leadership choices for the assembly’s Middle East Issues committee. The initial moderator tapped for the position resigned and has since been replaced.

Presa said his decision to accept that resignation and select a new committee moderator was not the result of lobbying efforts, and was tied to upholding the assembly principles of fairness and impartiality that undergird the committee process.

“These committee moderators and vice moderators have the important task of guiding and facilitating discussions and careful deliberation of the many issues coming to the 221st General Assembly,” he said. More than 70 overtures have been submitted thus far for consideration by the assembly, which convenes June 14-21 in Detroit.

“Now, as we journey to Detroit, let us join together in earnest and fervent prayers for mutual discourse grounded in love and a wide embrace of the wondrous diversity that exists in our covenant community,” Presa said.