The Evangel Presbytery, a part of the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), has put forth an overture petitioning the United States Government and all 50 State Governments to end sex-change procedures for minors. The move comes as part of the church’s commitment to the “Bible’s teaching on the complementarity of men and women”, according to the overture.
In Overture 12, the Evangel Presbytery rightly argues that “the sex of a person is the biological state of being female or male, based on sex organs, chromosomes, and endogenous hormone profiles, and is genetically encoded into a person at the moment of conception and it cannot be changed.” They state that medical interventions relating to sex-change procedures reject God’s design and science.
The Evangel Presbytery’s stand draws from scripture, scientific studies, and medical reports, indicating an epidemic 900% increase in girls diagnosed with gender dysphoria in the past eight years. The group states that the majority of these cases, particularly in minors, result from social contagion influenced by contemporary social, educational, and cultural factors.
Citing studies showing a significant majority of minors with gender dysphoria eventually come to accept their biological sex after puberty, the overture urges a ‘wait-and-see’ approach coupled with counseling. The church body deems current medical interventions on minors, including hormonal treatments and surgeries, as harmful, unjust, and irreversible.
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The petition also raises the concern of underlying mental health issues caused by childhood trauma, arguing that these are not addressed by medical interventions and may lead to more mental unrest and suicidal thinking.
Moreover, it criticizes any governmental authority that might remove children from their parents for refusing to support their child’s transition to another gender. “Parents have the right to raise their children according to their belief that God made them male or female,” the overture insists.
The decision made by Evangel Presbytery is starkly different from the reactions—or more accurately, the lack thereof—of other denominations like the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) and similar evangelical entities. This conspicuous silence, particularly from the SBC, is especially noteworthy considering their historically assertive stance on controversial social issues.
Under the leadership of Brent Leatherwood as President of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC), the SBC has remained noticeably silent on critical and contentious child-grooming topics. The likes of Drag Queen Story Hour, a phenomenon that has sparked extensive debate for its potential to prematurely expose children to complex issues of gender and sexuality, have gone unaddressed by the SBC.
Likewise, the ERLC, under Leatherwood, has not responded to concerns over the rise of “gender-affirming” “transgender” policies for minors, despite the immense push through public institutions to mainstream such policies.
What makes the SBC’s silence all the more striking is the organization’s obsessive focus on a fantasy ‘sex abuse’ crisis. The SBC has directed a significant amount of resources, including time, money, and organizational effort, towards this issue. While any form of abuse, particularly sexual abuse, is undoubtedly a grave matter that warrants attention and resolution, the SBC’s response has been disproportionate and alarmist and many voices within the SBC have been manufacturing a crisis where one doesn’t exist.
The SBC is neglecting other real-world problems, such as the moral and ethical challenges posed by gender-affirming trans policies for minors and events like Drag Queen Story Hour. In contrast to this, Evangel Presbytery’s overture might serve as an example to these silent entities, demonstrating a willingness to openly engage with these difficult, yet important conversations that hold significant societal implications.
The petition concludes by requesting the General Assembly of the PCA to send the overture to the US Government and each State Government. The PCA Stated Clerk Office would be responsible for this task.
This petition by Evangel Presbytery underscores a broader cultural, ethical, and spiritual discussion within religious and secular circles about gender identity and the well-being of minors struggling with gender dysphoria. The role of religious bodies in influencing policies concerning minors, gender dysphoria, and their overall and spiritual well-being remains significant. Indeed, these religious entities should aim to navigate these issues with biblical integrity, aiming to uphold not just the physical health, but more importantly, the spiritual health of the children involved without compromising God’s Word.
Read the full petition below: