Regarding the Faith Community and Mission of
The Christian and Missionary Alliance and Its Ecclesiastical Entities
I.Key Characteristics of the C&MA’s Faith Community and Mission.
The Great Lakes District of The Christian and Missionary Alliance (“[Entity]”) is a community of faith that exists to exercise and express its biblical beliefs within the broader community of The Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA). These beliefs are grounded in a shared understanding of Holy Scripture including those beliefs and standards specifically addressed in the Manual of the Christian and Missionary Alliance (Manual).
A. The C&MA’s Biblical Beliefs.
The [Entity] is a community of faith based on its and the C&MA’s biblical beliefs, which include the following.
1.Statement of Faith. The C&MA has adopted the statement of faith set forth in the Manual.
2. Christian Mission and Values. The [Entity] directs all of its activities in accordance with the following C&MA mission:
We desire to know Jesus Christ as Savior, Sanctifier, Healer, and Coming King and to complete His Great Commission. The Alliance will fulfill His Commission through
Evangelizing and discipling persons throughout the United States,
Incorporating them into Christ-centered, community-focused congregations, and
Mobilizing them for active involvement in a global effort designed to plant Great Commission churches among unengaged, unreached and responsive peoples worldwide.
In carrying out this mission, the [Entity] activities are conducted in accordance with the following biblical values:
Lost people matter to God. He wants them found. Luke 19:10
Prayer is the primary work of the people of God. Philippians 4:6-7
Everything we have belongs to God. We are His stewards. 1 Chronicles 29:14
Knowing and obeying God’s Word is fundamental to all true success. Joshua 1:8
Completing the Great Commission will require the mobilization of every fully devoted disciple. Matthew 28:19
Without the empowerment of the Holy Spirit, we can accomplish nothing. 1 Corinthians 2:4-5
Achieving God’s purposes means taking faith-filled risks. This always involves change. Hebrews 11:6
B.Representatives and Other Participants
The [Entity]’s faith community is represented by all of the [Entity]’s officers, directors, employees, licensed workers and volunteer leaders, each of whom serves the [Entity]’s mission and is an integral part of the community (each such person is described for purposes of this Statement only as an “[Entity] representative”). The other community participants, including [Entity] members and volunteers, contribute to the [Entity]’s faith community, but they do not represent the [Entity] unless they are also employees or leaders or have been designated as such by the appropriate ecclesiastical authority.
C.Christian Exercise and Expression.
1.As a Community. The C&MA believes that the local church is the visible organized expression of the Body of Christ and that the local church finds broader meaning and outreach in fulfilling its biblical responsibilities within the life and witness of the denomination. In addition, those who participate in the life of the C&MA, including the [Entity] representatives, are following the biblical command to live out their faith in community and association with other believers. Accordingly, the [Entity] is itself an exercise and expression of its biblical beliefs and standards.
2.Through its Mission Based Activities. The C&MA believes that all [Entity] activities, including the responsibilities of every [Entity] member and employee, should be rendered in service to God as a form of worship. Therefore, the [Entity] as a community of faith exercises and expresses its biblical beliefs in every activity, action, and responsibility.
II.Christian Community Standards for Ministry Activities.
The [Entity] shall engage in activities and use its facilities solely to exercise and express the biblical beliefs of the [Entity] and the C&MA and to further the mission of both. In furtherance of this mission, the [Entity] may provide services or goods to, and may allow use of its facilities by, other groups and persons who are not members or employees of the [Entity]. But no [Entity] activity, nor any use of [Entity] facilities by another group or person, may be conducted or permitted if the [Entity] determines that such activity or use expresses a message of support by the [Entity] for any view contrary to the biblical beliefs of the [Entity] and the C&MA.
For many years the C&MA as a faith community has had concerns with the cultural and legal trends in North America. This resulted in specific statements being adopted by the C&MA over the years to biblically address these cultural concerns. These cultural concerns include but are not limited to divorce, marriage, human sexuality, and sanctity of life. The [Entity] affirms the biblical beliefs and standards expressed in each statement.
Marriage and Human Sexuality
As such, the [Entity] subscribes to the biblical belief that God creates human beings in His image as two distinct genders, male and female, and that the intended gender identity of an individual is determined by such individual’s biological sex at birth. The [Entity] applies this belief regarding gender identity in all policies and programs in the [Entity]’s faith community. In addition, the [Entity] subscribes to the biblical belief that God has instituted marriage as a covenant relationship between one man and one woman. The [Entity] recognizes only such marriages for all policies and programs in the [Entity]’s faith community. Further, the [Entity] subscribes to the biblical belief that sexual desire is rightfully fulfilled only within marriage and that unmarried singles who abstain from sex can be whole, mature persons, as pleasing to God as persons who are faithful in marriage.
Likewise, the [Entity] subscribes to the biblical belief that all life is sacred from conception to death and that individuals are known by God from before the foundation of the world and that human life begins at conception and that death is under the sovereignty of God and not man. The [Entity] accordingly believes that no procedures should be performed for the primary objective of terminating a pregnancy and taking the life of an unborn child (such procedures are referred to herein as abortions) except in rarest of circumstances where other biblical, moral principles prevail, such as where it is medically impossible to save the life of both the mother and the child. Similarly, the [Entity] believes that no medical procedure should be performed that takes the life of an individual prematurely (such procedures are referred to as euthanasia). The [Entity]’s beliefs further prohibit paying for or otherwise facilitating such procedures.
As dictated by these beliefs, the [Entity] as an organization shall not fund abortions in any manner, including through a health care benefit plan that covers prescription drugs that induce abortions, except in the foregoing extraordinary circumstances unless in a particular situation (i) any such drug is prescribed and used solely for a non-abortive therapeutic treatment of a covered medical condition or for an abortion in the foregoing extraordinary circumstances and (ii) coverage is approved by the plan’s governing body or the [Entity]’s appropriate ecclesiastical authority. In addition, the [Entity] shall not participate through its health care benefit plan in a program that uses the plan as a means for providing drugs used to induce abortion, except in the foregoing extraordinary circumstances. Any requirement to facilitate abortions or euthanasia by participating in such a program, and any penalty for failing to participate in such a program, would directly and substantially burden and undermine the [Entity]’s exercise and expression of its biblical beliefs.
In conformance with these biblical beliefs and standards, the [[Entity]] engages solely in activities that further its faith mission. All such activities can and should be vehicles for spiritual growth. Therefore, the [Entity] considers all of its activities to be a form of religious worship.
The [Entity] distinguishes between exclusive religious activities and integrated religious activities. Exclusive religious activities include devotional worship services such as chapel services conducted by the [Entity], and distinctly theological education or pastoral counseling.
Integrated religious activities include activities similar to those conducted by nonreligious organizations for the benefit of society. The [Entity] conducts such activities in furtherance of and in accordance with its biblical beliefs.
With respect to restrictions that may be imposed on the use of funds or other benefits offered to the [Entity], the [Entity] shall not agree to any restriction that would preclude the [Entity] from conducting its integrated religious activities in furtherance of and in accordance with its religious beliefs. The [Entity] may agree not to use offered funds or benefits for exclusive religious activities.
To the extent the [designated organization leader] determines it to be necessary or advisable to further the [Entity]’s mission or to cultivate the [Entity]’s faith community, he or she may establish additional standards based on Holy Scripture and the beliefs and standards addressed in the Manual for the activities and programs conducted within the faith community or for [Entity] representatives or other community participants. The determination as to whether any particular activity or use of [Entity] facilities is not permitted under this Policy requires both spiritual discernment and an understanding of C&MA beliefs and standards which are applied to each particular circumstance. Such determination shall be made in conformance with this discernment and these beliefs and standards in the sole discretion of the spiritual leaders of the [Entity] designated by the appropriate ecclesiastical authority. With respect to uses by other groups or persons, the [Entity] may consider without limitation both the content of the proposed activities and whether the group or person is generally perceived by the public as advocating views contrary to the biblical beliefs of the [Entity] and the C&MA.
III.Community Standards for [Entity] representatives.
A.Roles and Expectations.
In response to God’s calling on their lives, [Entity] representatives exercise and express both their own and the C&MA’s biblical beliefs and standards by working together to advance the [Entity]’s faith mission. [Entity] representatives are responsible for defining, cultivating, leading and/or representing the [Entity]’s faith community as an expression and exercise of their and the C&MA’s biblical beliefs and standards. Accordingly, each [Entity] representative shall be expected to (i) model these biblical beliefs and standards for others, (ii) perform all of their responsibilities as a service to God and (iii) comply with the following obligations:
1.Biblical Beliefs. Each [Entity] representative shall affirm their agreement with the C&MA’s statement of faith and other biblical beliefs and shall not subscribe to or promote any religious beliefs inconsistent with these beliefs.
2.Christian Conduct Standards. [Entity] representatives shall at all times (both during working and nonworking hours) endeavor to conduct themselves in a manner that affirms biblical standards of conduct in accordance with theirs and the C&MA’s biblical beliefs.
3.Distinctly Christian Activities. Each [Entity] representative shall be ready, willing and able to lead or contribute to distinctly Christian activities such as worship or prayer services.
B. Noncompliance by Representatives.
If any [Entity] representative does not comply with the obligations set forth above, such representative shall have an obligation to disclose such noncompliance to the [Entity]. The [Entity] may determine whether such representative intends or is likely to continue in such noncompliance. If so, then the [Entity] may dismiss such representative from his or her position on the basis that such representative's noncompliance is inconsistent with and undermines the expression and exercise of the [Entity] faith community. Such action may be taken in accordance with any applicable procedures in the Uniform Policy on Discipline, Restoration and Appeal.
C.Volunteers and Contract Workers.
Volunteers and contract workers are not considered to be representatives of the [Entity]’s faith community unless they are serving in leadership positions. Nevertheless, when volunteers and certain contract workers as determined by the [Entity], serve with the [Entity], they shall be required to acknowledge that they understand and agree to support the [Entity]’s mission and values. The [Entity] may give preference for such service to volunteers and contract workers who share its biblical beliefs.