Covenant of Conduct

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Covenant of Conduct

In order for the congregation and the church council to deal effectively with issues of the congregation, the following guidelines were adopted by Messiah Lutheran Church Council of the Florida Bahama Synod on May 28, 2020 as a continuing resolution.

  1. All members affirm their right to express their opinions about the life and ministry of the congregation.
  1. The congregation operates with a direct democracy form of government that allows members to share their opinions directly with the pastors, church council, and at congregational meetings.
  1. When the members of the congregation express an opinion to a member of the council; the council person shall ask, “What would you like me to do with this information?”
  1. If the member desires to have the information transmitted to the council, the council person shall ask if the information has been shared with the committee chair/staff person responsible for that area of ministry. If not, they will be directed to speak to that person first. If they have or the issue is a direct council responsibility, the person shall be invited to bring the information/opinion to the next council meeting. The time and dates shall be given.
  1. If the member will not speak to the committee/staff person or does not wish to appear at council in person, the council members shall ask the member for permission to use their name in reporting. If permission is not given, the council member shall say, “I'm sorry but I will not be able to report this to the council since we do not deal with anonymous letters or comments”. This position is shaped by the command of Jesus regarding relationships among believers in Matthew 18:15-17.
  1. If permission is given, the council member shall report the information/opinion to the council and use the member's name.
  1. At his/her discretion, a council member may ask that the member refer this issue to another council member for presentation.
  1. Each issue shall be placed on the agenda and written in the minutes along with the action taken by the council. Action may include: Received as information, “Pastor and/or President to visit member and report at next meeting,” etc.
  1. Opinions may be shared in writing with the council and shall be handled in the above- mentioned manner if the letter or statement is signed.
  1. Distribution or forwarding of confidential, council, or church business email or the misuse of church phone lists, email or texting lists by leaders or members is unacceptable and could result in discipline per the constitution.
  1. This policy also applies to all forms of electronic communication, including emails, texting, public posting on social media, and other electronic means and could also result in discipline per the constitution. Anonymously transmitted information will not be discussed or retained. Anonymously posted or attributed material on church social media will be deleted.
 
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