24. Church Board Covenant — Guiding Principles for Board Engagement

What principles will your church board use to guide the interactions, relationships, and conduct of each board member? A church board covenant can be very helpful to assist new and continuing board members understand their responsibilities and commitments.

Such a set of principles can provide the board chair with a very useful tool when seeking to facilitate board interactions, as well as orient new board members to their role and responsibility. It also provides a useful point for discussion every several years at a retreat, for example, where the chair can help the board members evaluate their leadership.

If you are developing a church board covenant, you might consider some of the following elements for inclusion:

1. pray daily for members of the church board, the pastoral team and the ministry of our church;

2. speak respectfully about each other in all contexts;

3. address and resolve conflicts quickly and biblically;

4. extend forgiveness when offended and carry no grudges;

5. care for other board members when they are in difficulty;

6. come to board meetings prepared, informed, and in prayerful dependence upon the Holy   Spirit for wisdom;

7. once the board has taken a decision, to support the board. If unable to do so, then be willing to resign;

8. be honest in all board dealings and discussions, voluntarily identifying potential conflicts of interest and never pursuing a personal agenda;

9. hold all board discussions in complete confidence;

10. agree that the board chair speaks for the board;

11. hold one another accountable for this covenant and agree to resign if significant and/or consistent violations of its provisions occurs.

Of course, you might find it helpful to create some variation and include other elements. As you reflect, please share your insights.

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