Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of DeKalb
Covenant of Right Relations
We, the members of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of DeKalb, join together in this covenant to ensure a welcoming, respectful, safe, and vibrant spiritual community in which each person can search for truth and meaning, build connections, renew their spirit, and be inspired to action. Right relations, created through commitment to respectful communication among individuals, are the foundation on which our vision of a healthy congregation is built. Our work together to understand and affirm our commitment to the practice of right relations will enrich our ability to love, respect, and nurture each other in our lifelong spiritual quests.
To maintain right relations and a healthy congregation, we will strive to
Support our mission and demonstrate our commitment to our church community by
- Being in beloved community and actively participating through personal involvement and through generous giving of time, financial support, and talent.
- Seeking involvement in congregational and community issues that promote social justice, fairness, and equity for our members and for all members of the larger community.
- Learning how our lives and histories come from different places of privilege, oppression, power, and vulnerability.
- Respecting and celebrating the full diversity and breadth of human experience.
- Providing our staff and leadership with adequate resources, trust, and support so that they may be effective in their roles.
- Expressing gratitude for the efforts and contributions of others.
- Having fun together.
Communicate respectfully and support healthy decision making by
- Creating safe opportunities and fair structures for sharing diverse ideas.
- Balancing the need to speak our views with clarity and efficiency, process our thoughts and emotions with care, and respect time constraints.
- Supporting transparency, avoiding anonymous commentary, taking responsibility for our views, and weighing carefully when confidentiality is requested.
- Listening attentively to appreciate fully another’s perspective.
- Expressing our own emotions and differences in a way that respects the worth and dignity of each person.
Understand that change and conflict are normal in healthy relationships. Therefore we will
- Respect tradition and also embrace change as the needs of our community change.
- Commit to the process of seeking mutually acceptable solutions through respectful communication and constructive discussion; we will stay at the table.
- Accept skilled help when we cannot reach agreement or reconciliation.
- Practice right relations by accepting that people may disagree vigorously but still treat each other respectfully, stay connected, and learn together.
- Be straightforward in addressing divisive or damaging behavior within our community.
- Acknowledge that everyone makes mistakes and we will seek and offer forgiveness.
By pledging this covenant, we choose to act in a manner that promotes a spiritual community grounded in love and justice. In following these guidelines, we will serve our own spiritual development, one another, our religious home, our local community, our larger faith, and our world.