Why are there so many (Reformed and Presbyterian) denominations?

Rev. Zach Wyse of West Side Reformed Fellowship in Cincinnati, OH asks this question of Rev. Danny Hyde of the Oceanside United Reformed Church:

From an historical standpoint, why are there are so many different Reformed and Presbyterian denominations in America (I count twelve in NAPARC)?  Also, what keeps them apart?

The different denominations find their roots in distinct reformations in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. For example, the United Reformed Churches (URC) and Free Reformed Churches (FRC) are rooted in the Netherlands reformation. There are historical reasons why the mother churches of these denominations in the Netherlands were distinct, which led to their distinctness when they arrives in North America. Because these churches originally spoke Dutch, and were from the European continent, this meant there would be differences with Presbyterians in England and Scotland who spoke English. So when these people came to the New World and later United States, their circumstantial and well as doctrinal differences became distinct denominations.

See more of Rev Wyse’s interview with Rev Hyde on the Cincinnati Reformed website here

 

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