FPCB-ECO Congregation Files Motion Not to Appeal Court Ruling

BETHLEHEM, Penn., Jan. 29, 2018—Today the First Presbyterian Church of Bethlehem ECO
(FBCB-ECO) congregation filed a motion with the court to end any further legal actions.. In
December 2017, Judge Stephen G. Baratta, Northampton County Court of Common Pleas,
issued a ruling awarding rights of the church’s property to the Lehigh Presbytery. Rather than
appealing the ruling, the FPCB-ECO congregation has chosen instead to focus on the future of
the congregation.

“We have always believed we were following God’s leadership in our decision (and
overwhelming majority vote of the congregation) to join the ECO Presbyterian denomination and
trusted God would meet our congregation’s needs in this process,” said Dr.. Marnie Crumpler,
who led services January 21 for the first time at the congregation’s new location for worship:
Bethlehem Catholic High School. “Leaving our location on Center Street was both a bold and
difficult move. But God’s plan and leading were evident in our first Sunday in our new location.
as more than 1,000 adults and more than 100 children, gathered to worship together. We hope
many people will come and experience our community in this exciting next season.

FPCB-ECO is hopeful that ending legal proceedings will allow both congregations to return
ministry to its rightful place as the top priority. “Ultimately, we long to see Jesus’ name made
famous, not our church, and not a denomination,” said Crumpler. As we have always prayed,
we hope this action, will allow both churches to bless each other and move into our own futures.

Along with its new temporary location, FPCB-ECO will launch its new name on April 1, Easter Sunday.

“Our location may have changed, and eventually our name, but our more than 143-year
commitment remains the same: sharing the love of Jesus with our community and doing all we
can to model Christ-likeness in what we say and do,” said Crumpler.

For more information about FPCB-ECO, now located at 2133 Madison Avenue, Bethlehem,
Penn., call 610-333-5508 or Services are at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m., with programs
designed for children at both service times.

Media Note: For interviews with Dr.. Crumpler or high-res photos, contact Jackie Etter at or (908) 310-2824.