Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
I bring you greetings in the name of Jesus Christ, our Risen Lord and Savior!
If you take a look around various places throughout the church building, you might take notice of the signs recently posted titled, “HOLY MANNERS FOR ST. JAMES LUTHERAN CHURCH.” Church council and staff are striving to make St. James an even more welcoming place as we move into our future as a vibrant, compassionate congregation and place of worship. Please take the time to read over them, and, as we work together to live out our calling as children of God, join in with us to continue the ministries of this place for many years to come!
HOLY MANNERS FOR ST. JAMES LUTHERAN CHURCH
We believe that these promises will enable us to better serve God, our church family and each other as we practice Holy Manners. The promises to our church family let every person at St. James know what to expect as we are striving to make the following promises a grand reality as God continues to fill us with His Holy Spirit and love in this congregation.
OUR PROMISES TO GOD
- We promise to pray, alone and together, thanking God and asking for God’s help in our lives and in our work for our church.
- We promise to seek and follow God’s direction through worship and Bible Study.
OUR PROMISES TO OUR CHURCH FAMILY
- We promise to care for, respect, and support every person and ministry of St. James.
- We promise to listen with an open, nonjudgmental mind to the words and ideas of congregation members, lay leaders, staff members, the pastor, and people in our community.
- We promise to manage conflict in a constructive way, by taking concerns to the appropriate person and encouraging others to do the same, realizing that conflict can be a positive experience when handled respectfully and courteously at all times.
- We promise to respect and learn from the past and always move forward in a positive direction.
- We promise to practice love and forgiveness.
OUR PROMISES TO EACH OTHER
- We promise to maintain a “safe place” atmosphere at all times.
- We promise to create a caring environment at all times, where people, ideas and opinions are respected, valued and shared, and continual improvement is desired.
- As individuals we promise to invest time and energy to find the best solutions.
- We promise to explain clearly to people who bring complaints that those complaints need to be directed to the person at issue to avoid becoming a third party.
- We promise to accept the fact that disagreements are expected and are to be worked out in conversation with the person(s) with whom we disagree so as to promote a healthy church environment.
- We promise to love one another and practice the Fruit of the Spirit.
*Created from resources and insights from Behavioral Covenants in Congregations: A Handbook for Honoring Differences, by Gilbert E. Rendle, © 1999, The Alban Institute.