In season 4 of More Than A Cake Stall, we’re going to consider the history of women elders within the PCA and the PCNSW. With a little help from past and present Assembly delegates, clerks, moderators, ministers and elders, we hope to better understand how the Courts of the Church have engaged this issue over the last 70+ years, and in doing so, find the answer to the question, how did we get here?
In episode 1, Until Union, we follow the debates held in the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of Australia (GAA) regarding women elders (1949, 1959, 1962, 1965, and 1967) and in the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of NSW (GANSW) (1948, 1960, and 1967-9,), with a brief glimpse at the crisis brought on by Union. Rev David Burke joins us with helpful insights into the context that led to the decision (and helpfully explains Overtures and The Barrier Act!).
I'm deeply indebted to the invaluable efforts of Mrs Sue Pacey and Rev Bruce Meller, at the Ferguson Library; Rev David Burke for his graciousness to be interviewed; Iron In Our Blood by Mark Hutchinson; Burning or Bushed, edited by Rev Paul F Cooper and Rev David Burke; and lecture notes compiled by Mrs Nicole Mannyx, as presented in Ministry Training Women.