Loving Kindness:

I promise to:
people shaking hands in the sanctuaryReach out and include others, especially newcomers, in conversations, church functions, and social events
Honor the different levels of commitment of both time and money that folks make to our congregation
Respect confidentiality
Trust that the basic motives of our members are positive
Maintain a sense of humor

 

Speaking:
I promise to:

Own my feelings, opinions, and biases by making “I” statements
Avoid making assumptions and generalizations about the beliefs of others
Create and maintain an atmosphere, which invites feedback and allows everyone to speak
Provide honest, up-front feedback at all times

 

Listening:
I promise to:

man talking enthusiastically to someoneListen with respect and without interruption to the ideas, beliefs, and feelings of others
Avoid being distracted by anger or an agenda to persuade, debate or win
Keep lines of communication direct and open

 

Forward Movement:
I promise to:

Accept decisions reached when all views have been heard
Remain committed to our church community regardless of these decisions

I support and trust our church community to:

Respect differences
Create and maintain a safe place to disclose fears and concerns
Discuss these in the most supportive manner
Examine previous opinions and assumptions with fresh eyes and openness to change
Remain aware of the common hopes, fears, and needs inherent in our humanity

 

Anonymous Criticism:
We covenanted together not to pass on anonymous criticism: If someone has a criticism, we will ask them if they have taken it directly to the appropriate person or committee.  If they have not, we will offer to go with them to do that or let them know that the Committee on Ministry will assist.  If they decline, we, as a last resort, will offer to take their criticism with their name.  If they decline, we will let it drop and we will not repeat it.


Our thanks to Susan Bronn, Liz Ellenberger, Katherine Gooding, and Nick Williams, the committee of scribes who compiled the work we produced that evening.