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A covenant within the Church is a relationship bound by God and between members. A covenant is a binding promise to work together to reach a common goal through God and in partnership with each other.


Covenants define obligations and commitments made to God and others. In the case of the FUMC Florence Discernment Team, their covenant includes a series of statements that each member and advisor committed to uphold.

FUMC Florence Discernment Team

Covenant Guidelines for Communal Discernment

  • Be intentional in developing relationships with one another to build and maintain a Christian community and foster trust.

  • Rely on prayer, Scripture, listening, and deep engagement with Christ and each other.

  • Act in a spirit of truth and love, honoring the truth that God works through each one of us in the Body of Christ.

  • Engage in conversation and ongoing study together.

  • Seek to provide accurate, unbiased information.

  • Learn about the various perspectives on the topic.

  • Use “I” messages to speak openly and transparently regarding one’s intentions, concerns, values, and interests.

  • Speak from our personal experiences related to the subject.

  • Listen attentively and with respect and openness to our sisters and brothers, believing that all desire to be faithful to Jesus Christ.

  • Go out of our way to listen to persons with whom we disagree and listen with an open heart to glean new insights and wisdom.

  • Respond after restating what we have heard and asking for any clarification.

  • Focus on ideas instead of questioning people’s motives, intelligence, integrity, or faith.

  • Refrain from name-calling or using labels.

  • Forego from actively participating in recruitment of individuals to anyone’s “side”.

  • Encourage individual discernment for members of our congregation.

  • Articulate what the largest portion of the body senses is the leading of the Holy Spirit.

If a Team Member or Advisor is not in compliance with the Covenant Guidelines, the Team will address the issue.

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