We, the members of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tallahassee, do covenant to make every good faith effort to abide by the following covenant. We do so knowing that, rather than a “rule book,” this is something to which we encourage each other to aspire in all our interactions with one another. We do so knowing that relational skills need to be honed and adjusted across time, and so we also understand that this covenant may be amended in the future.
Member to All
I will ask myself “How does what I want relate to what is best for the whole congregation?”
I will address misunderstandings directly with the person.
I will first confirm my understanding of another person’s position, with them, before I express my own position.
I will support the work and programs of the church with my time and money.
I will take full responsibility for my own feelings and actions.
I will support every person’s rights to his or her opinions, values, and beliefs.
I will honor decisions of the congregation.
I will treat e-mail as public discourse.
I will preface and follow all critical comments with positive comments.
Member to Member
I will take responsibility to listen to the ideas, beliefs, and opinions of another member and speak respectfully, compassionately, and empathetically.
I will honestly share with other members my hopes, concerns, and stories and will encourage other members to do so as well.
I will support and encourage the enjoyment of fellowship with other members.
I will be open to self-evaluation and change.
I will clarify and honor confidences.
Member to Minister
I will maintain a positive, affirmative, trustful, and respectful relationship with the minister.
I will express myself to the minister with empathy by doing my best to be aware of and accepting of the minister’s feelings and needs.
I will thoughtfully express any serious concerns I have about the minister directly to the minister, and I will attend carefully to the minister’s responses.
I will respect and honor the minister’s right to freedom of the pulpit.
I will respect the minister’s special knowledge, training, experience, and perspective.
I will recognize the minister’s right to a private life.
I will support meeting UUA fair compensation guidelines for the minister’s salary and benefits.
Right Relationships : Member to Member
Member to Staff
I will treat staff persons with respect as professionals.
I will support meeting UUA fair compensation guidelines for salaries and benefits for all staff persons.
I will express appreciation for work well done by any staff person.
I will discuss any concern about a staff person with that person first.
I will recognize and support the authority of the minister as head of staff.
I will recognize and respect the fact that staff persons have designated working hours and personal lives outside of the church.
I will maintain positive, affirmative, trustful, and respectful relationships with all staff persons.
I will support and encourage the professional development of each staff person.
Member to Children and Youth
I will support the youth R.E. program with my money, time, and talents.
I will strive to appropriately help our children and youth demonstrate respectful, responsible, and honorable behavior in all aspects of our church life.
I will cherish each child and youth as a member of our beloved community.
I will strive to make our children and youth feel included in Sunday services as stated in our existing R.E. covenant.
I will strive to get to know the children and youth of the church.
I will welcome new families with children and youth.
I will recognize the accomplishments of individual children and youth to help build their self- esteem.
I will support and encourage the spiritual growth of our children and youth.
I will work to integrate our children and youth into all aspects of congregational life and activities.
I will strive to be a role model for all our children and youth.
Member to Lay Leadership
I will treat lay leaders with respect, remembering that they are congregants as I am.
I will honor the fact that lay leaders act for the good of all members; therefore I will support the decisions they make.
I will be willing to serve as a lay leader of the congregation as I am able.
I will honor the unique responsibilities and authority of the Board as the governing body of the congregation.
I will learn and follow the policies and procedures for communicating with the Board on official matters of Board action.
I will strive to be an informed member of the congregation recognizing the democratic principles of its organization.
Member to Community
I will model UU principles by word and deed.
I will inform the local community of UUCT programs and encourage others to emulate or participate in them, when appropriate.
I will support the rights of all voices to be heard.
I will model democratic values by active and informed participation.
I will contribute to the community by participating in interfaith and other community groups to further UU principles.
I will explore other faiths and invite other members of the community to explore ours.
I will strive to mobilize others to action.
I will be open to participating in UU district and denominational activities.