As a church, we are different from other groups. We are part of the Body of Christ, which reaches across time and around the world. Whenever we gather, we strive to recognize Christ’s presence in our midst and to honor Christ by our relationships with one another. We do this to build up the Body of Christ. We do this to grow in faith, so that the love with which we treat one another might also be expressed beyond the walls of Second Congregational Church.
We will seek to communicate clearly and respectfully. When we disagree, we will strive to listen, to speak with deep intention and to:
o Give our undivided attention to whoever is speaking
o Allow for full expression of a thought or idea before speaking
o Speak only for ourselves, using “I” language unless we identify the source
o Not interrupt
o Offer respect for each person and perspective, and validate those with whom we disagree, realizing that “disagree” and “dislike” are not synonymous
o Seek actively to understand the other point of view
o Focus on issues and actions, not personalities or character
o Seek God’s guidance in prayer as we reach across to each other
“Beloved… everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger” (James 1:19).
In all things, we will remember that the church is not our idea, but God’s; that it is bigger–far bigger–than any of us; and that the Holy Spirit has plans that may far exceed our expectations, our imaginations, and even our lifetimes.
In trust to one another, and with trust in God, do we commit ourselves to the fulfillment of this Covenant.