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Orthodox Presbyterian Church

(formerly known as the “Presbyterian Church of America”). It was founded in 1936 after a long struggle within the Presbyterian Church in the USA between theological conservatives who sought to conform the denomination to its doctrinal constitution, the Westminster Confession* of Faith, and their opponents who were willing to tolerate theological “modernism.”* The conservative group was led by J. Gresham Machen* who in 1929 left his professorship at Princeton Theological Seminary to found Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, and in 1933 founded “The Independent Board for Presbyterian Foreign Missions.” This latter act brought the suspension of Machen and several others from the ministry, which in turn precipitated the schism. The Orthodox Presbyterian Church, a relatively small group, emphasizes strongly the infallibility of Scripture and faithfulness to traditional Presbyterian doctrine. The general assembly in 1975 approved a merger with the Reformed Presbyterian Church, Evangelical Synod, but the latter denomination voted against union.