St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church (denomination)
|This article relies on references to primary sources. (July 2007)|
St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church (Iglesia Presbiteriana San Andrés in Spanish), is a Christian church denomination that has its origins in the arrival in Argentina of Scottish colonial settlers early in the 19th century.
St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church believes that the Bible contains the special revelation of God to mankind, and that it is the only rule of faith and conduct for the guidance of its members. The Church reaffirms the freedom of conscience of its members in regards to the personal interpretation of the biblical text.
St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church follows the model of presbyterian church government of the early church. It is governed by Elders (Presbyters), meeting in three courts in regular gradation: the Church Session, the Presbytery and the General Assembly.
Elders can be:
- Teaching Elders (or Pastors): elders elected and trained to teach and preach.
- Ruling Elders: elders elected to oversee the spiritual welfare of the church.
The Church Session is formed y all Elders elected (or called) by the congregation to carry out the particular functions. Generally it meets monthly.
The Presbytery is formed by all Teaching Elders and a limited number of Ruling Elders commissioned by each Church Session (generally two per church). It meets three times a year.
The upper court, the General Assembly, is formed by all Teaching Elders and a limited number of Ruling Elders commissioned by each Church Session (generally two per church). The church does not currently have a General Assembly.
The Book of Order of the St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church is a constitutional church document defines the guidelines for the government, discipline and worship of its members.
St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church is a member of the Argentine Federation of Evangelical Churches (Federación Argentina de Iglesias Evangélicas).
The logo the Church combines the symbol of the burning bush with the Latin motto, nec tamen consumebatur. The burning bush appeared for the first time as a symbol of presbyterianism at the end of the 17th century and has been widely used by the Church of Scotland and many other presbyterian denominations. The motto is taken from the Franciscus Junius-Immanuel Tremellius Latin biblical translation of 1579, appearing in the Old Testament in Exodus 3.2:
- "and the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed.