A conservative Presbyterian breakaway network of churches founded as an alternative to the more liberal Presbyterian Church (USA) has passed the 100-membership mark, the Christian Post website reports today (January 14, 2014).
Founded just two years ago, the Evangelical Covenant Order (ECO) of Presbyterians passed the milestone late last year and continues to add more congregations this month.
In an announcement recently sent out to supporters, ECO hailed the passing of the 100-church mark as a “milestone.”
Church officials said they recently added four more churches to the network and added, “Welcome to these new ECO churches. We praise God for His Faithfulness and look forward to growing together in 2014!”
Wikipedia has more on ECO here.
Competing answers to an increasingly pressing question.
Who is a Jew? This question is becoming ever more pressing for Jews around the world. It looks like a religious issue, but is bound up with history, Israeli politics and the rhythms of the diaspora. Addressing it means deciding whether assimilation is a mortal threat, as many Jews think, or a phenomenon to be accommodated. The struggle over the answer will shape Israel’s society, its relations with Jews elsewhere, and the size and complexion of the global Jewish community.
For Orthodox Jews like Rabbi Tubul, the solution is simple and ancient: you are a Jew if your mother is Jewish, or if your conversion to Judaism accorded with the Halacha, Jewish religious law. Gentiles might be surprised that for Jews by birth this traditional test makes no reference to faith or behaviour. Jews may be atheist (many are: apostasy is a venerable Jewish tradition) and still Jews. Joel Roth, a Conservative rabbi at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York, likens this nativist criterion to that for American citizenship: Americans retain it regardless of their views on democracy or the constitution. Some strict rabbis even think that a child is not Jewish if born to a devout mother but from a donated gentile egg…
The Economist has more.