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Eric Laverentz

Recovering the Office of Elder The Shepherd Model, Part III by Eric Laverentz
In the last two editions of Theology Matters we have examined the historical and biblical role of elders as shepherds of the people rather than primarily as leaders of a corporation. The former expression was standard among Reformed and Presbyterian congregations from the 16th century until the early 1900s. Of course, our society has changed dramatically since then. But might it still be possible to recover this former understanding of the office of elder, which is so central to our history, identity, and being as Presbyterians? Winter 2019 Theology Matters, Pg. 5

Recovering the Office of Elder The Shepherd Model, Part II by Eric Laverentz
In 1898, the ruling elders of the Second Presbyterian Church in Kansas City, Missouri, became aware through local media that one of their members, Dr. H.S Lowry had become sexually involved with one of his employees. Dr. Lowry repented of the sin and admitted his offense in writing to the Session. However, the elders of Second Presbyterian Church sought further to set the matter straight between the couple. They spelled out their terms. Dr. Lowry was forgiven, but to regain full “communion and privileges of membership” he would have to marry the woman. They made it clear: “An adequate repentance it seems to us can only be fully evinced by giving to the young woman you have wronged the right to bear your name and to look to you for the protection which a husband alone can afford a wife.” Fall 2018, Theology Matters, Pg. 6

Rediscovering the Office of Elder The Shepherd Model by Eric Laverentz
At the center of our name, tradition, identity, and ethos as Presbyterians is a term that has lost almost all connection with what it meant to most who have called themselves Presbyterians over the last five centuries. Even to many of our parents and grandparents being a “presbyter” or “elder” meant something quite different than it means to most of us today. Summer 2018, Theology Matters, P. 1

Heresy, History and Hope by Eric Laverentz
Laverentz looks at historic church struggles like Aranism, Pelagianism, Donatism that plagued the church for centuries and some would say continue today. He observes, "heresy often serves to reform the Church by forcing it to clarify its theology and ethics."  Nov/Dec 2006 Theology Matters p 7