Being a Presbyterian in
By: Dr. Stephen Hayes
In the year 1978 Dr. Stephen Hayes wrote this
booklet which went on to sell thousands of copies. We are
here reproducing it in a slightly updated form. We hope
that you find it both of interest and of help.
WHAT IS THE PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH? 2
1. We are Evangelical
2. We are Catholic
3. We are Reformed
THE CENTRE OF OUR FAITH: THE LIVING GOD 3
1. God is Lord
2. God is Triune
3. God is Saviour
THE CHURCH 7
1. The church is the body of Christ
2. The worshipping church reaches out
3. The church is under the authority of Christ:
Presbyterian Church government
THE BIBLE 11
THE WESTMINSTER CONFESSION OF FAITH 13
THE SACRAMENTS 15
2. Holy Communion
THE CHRISTIAN LIFE 18
LIFE AFTER DEATH 19
THE PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH AND THE UNITED CHURCH 21
INTO THE FUTURE 22
What is the Presbyterian Church?
Presbyterian Churches are those which have certain beliefs in common and a Presbyterian form of
church government. This booklet presents an outline of those beliefs and government.
The Presbyterian Church in Canada shares those beliefs. We are a branch of the Christian church.
As such, we are Evangelical, Catholic, and Reformed.
1. WE ARE EVANGELICAL
In the New Testament the word "evangel" means good news. It is exactly the same word as
"gospel". The good news, of course, is about Jesus Christ: his life, teachings, death, and
resurrection. Basing our understanding of the word on the Bible, evangelicals, then, are those who
believe the good news and want to shar