Friday, November 22, 2013

Do we have to agree on everything to work together?

Recently I was in a meeting with some volunteer leaders, reviewing CCSC's Core Values. These values say that while we are a coalition of Christian churches, we don't agree with one another on everything, and that's okay. 

I really love this about CCSC. We provide a venue for people with different Christian perspectives to serve together.  For people outside the institution of the church, this comes as a surprise: often I hear people outside share that they view the church as argumentative and not unified.  That troubles me.

So do we have to agree on everything to work together?  Do you and I have to vote the same way to feed the hungry together?  Do you and I have to agree on what Jesus meant when he said, "I am the bread of life"?  Are Jesus's words meant to be taken only literally or also metaphorically?  Do we have to find consensus on these matters before we can come together as a Christian community to serve?

The answer is "no", we can agree to disagree and still work well together. What unites us is far more important than what divides us, and Jesus was clear that helping the poor, those who suffer, and the outcasts of society is a vital part of our faith walk.   

Below are CCSC's Core Values.  I'd love to hear your thoughts on them, so feel free to email me at

CCSC’s Core Values
The Christian Community Service Center (CCSC) is a coalition of churches working to alleviate poverty in the local community.  The ministry accomplishes this through various resources: volunteerism, in-kind donations, operating a resale shop, and cash donations from the private sector to include church, individual, foundation and corporate support. The ministry’s focus is to apply core business principles to the accomplishment of its mission so the agency is returning value to the community in an efficient and effective manner.
The organization’s core values are:
a.      Everyone is treated with dignity and respect.
b.      Staff and volunteers strive to live the gospel message.
c.       CCSC is an ecumenical group that serves everyone while respecting their religious, ethnic, or cultural differences.
d.      Out of respect for the diverse views that the member churches, volunteers and community members have on issues, CCSC does not engage in public policy work.

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