Core values have to do with ethics, character and virtue. Our core values are the character virtues that we believe are essential to Christianity. They are the answer to the question: what do God and the Gospel call us to be like? These values will form a standard by which to judge our behavior as a congregation.
This means, in our community, “speaking the truth in love,” but it also means respecting our own doubts and questions. If God is a God of truth, then we must be prepared always to deal with “the real stuff,” whatever it is. We must move beyond denial, and strive to live with integrity, to strive for congruence in our words, creeds, and actions.
This means living with respect for others, and a certain humility in ourselves. We owe respect (though not necessarily agreement) to the faith of others, to the humanity and image of God in others, in all circumstances. Recognizing that we do not have the whole truth ourselves, and that we are not the centre of the universe, we treat others and the earth with respect, at all times and in all circumstances.
This is an ancient Christian (and pre-Christian) virtue by which we welcome the stranger. We are called to welcome all, as did Jesus. We welcome people regardless of agreement, of race, creed, sexual orientation, etc. We “make space” for people in our hearts and lives, and we attempt to be of service.
Literally, to “feel with,” this virtue calls us to seek to understand our neighbours, and to share their burdens and joys somehow. It is a call to active caring, for those both in and out of the church, a virtue that directs our attention to others in such a way that we might serve even before we are asked.
This virtue is based on a vision of the “Reign of God”, the world as God would have it, the world in which God’s will is done, “on earth, as it is in heaven.” Even beyond “fairness,” it is a commitment to give to each their due, and to open the way of God’s shalom to all.
This virtue is to be fully, richly alive. Joy is a kind of happiness that is not so much dependent on outward circumstances, but on the life of Christ which wells up form inside us.
Knowing that God desires our highest good and total well-being, we commit ourselves to helping everyone be restored to wholeness of mind, emotions, spirit, body and relationship.
Other values that have been suggested/offered
-Openness to change/willingness to risk