Presbyterian Church Passes Resolution Against Spanking

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Presbyterian Church Passes Resolution Against Spanking


The 220th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) narrowly passed a resolution Thursday against using corporal punishment on children, the Christian Post reports. The resolution, which passed 334 to 306 with nine voters abstaining, also states that the PCUSA will now encourage "all states to enact licensing laws prohibiting corporal punishment in schools and day and residential childcare facilities." Many Christians believe corporal punishment is a biblical practice -- Proverbs 13:24 says, "Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them" -- while others believe children can be effectively disciplined in a non-physical way, and the resolution was controversial among General Assembly members. "Most people know the difference between discipline and abuse," the Rev. James Emig of the Denver Presbytery said. "I would like us to trust parents that most of them can responsibly [use] corporal punishment." Commissioner Susan Maara of the New Hope Presbytery argued: "If we can't stand against hitting and abusing children, what can we stand for? Let us love and not hit them."

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