Our Disciples' Covenant

 

Preamble: 

The church of Jesus Christ is called to be a covenant community of those who seek to live out the teachings of our Lord.  In the New Testament there are many passages which teach the church how to behave towards one another.  These passages are often referred to as the "one another" passages.  This covenant seeks to state what we understand those passages command.  

We are all beloved children of God, and as brothers and sisters in Christ:

  •       We treat each other with love and respect.
  •       We live in harmony with one another with openness and acceptance.
  •       We treat all with hospitality and grace.
  •       We teach and encourage one another.
  •       We listen and seek to understand each other without judgment.
  •       We serve one another, sharing one another's burdens.
  •       We forgive and accept forgiveness gracefully.
  •       We agree to disagree agreeably.
  •       We participate in worship and ministry through our prayers and gifts, our study and service, and so fulfill our callings as disciples of Jesus Christ.

 Through love and accountability:

  • We do not criticize, grumble, or judge one another.
  •  We do not label, stereotype, or call each other names.
  •  We do not slander, lie to or lie about one another.

 When personal conflicts, differences, and misunderstandings arise, we will follow the teaching of Jesus Christ in Matthew 18:15-17:

1.       First, speak directly to that person alone, not behind their backs or to others.  It is our sincere hope that resolution will be achieved.

2.       Then, if understanding, repentance, and forgiveness are not achieved, arrange a gathering with a small group of mature, compassionate members to seek understanding, repentance, forgiveness and acceptance.

3.       Finally, if conflict continues, ask to meet with the session, the spiritual leaders of the church. The session, guided by scripture and prayerful discernment, will take steps to achieve the appropriate resolution.