September 7: Our Presbyterian Genealogy

This week we will be presenting a series of articles by the Rev. Dr. Paul Woolley [1902-1984], who served as professor of church history at the Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia, from the start of that school in 1929 until his retirement in 1977.

This series of articles appeared on the pages of The Reformed Presbyterian Advocate, which was the denominational magazine of the Reformed Presbyterian Church, General Synod. Rev. Harry H. Meiners, Jr. was serving as editor of the magazine in the early 1950’s when these articles by Dr. Woolley were published, and as Rev. Meiners was a Westminster graduate, it seems a safe assumption that it was he who arranged their publication. To the best of my knowledge, these articles have not appeared anywhere else.

We start today with a chart, a Presbyterian family tree, which appeared in conjunction with the articles by Dr. Woolley. Some investigative work is ahead, as we try to determine whether this chart was prepared by Dr. Woolley or by someone else. I like the chart in part for the vertical presentation; others that I’ve seen run horizontally, but the vertical arrangement seems less confusing. Also, please note the correction at the base of the chart, making the correction that the Bible Presbyterian Church was formed in 1937, splitting off from the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. And of course, as this was published in 1951, it now needs to be updated.

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