Over the past year, we have seen many organizations experience challenges in our society as they work to live out the faith foundation upon which the organization was established. Today, more than ever, it is important that nonprofits and ministries do not turn away from their mission, but instead stand firm. However, we recognize that doing so can be scary and confusing—you didn’t go into this work thinking that you needed to think about legal protections.
It is important as our society becomes more antagonistic to ministries to be as prepared as possible.
Below are some steps your organization can take to ensure its faith foundations are protected.
- Review your By-laws. Many organizations did not include a Statement of Faith when the organization was formed. Others have a very generic or basic Statement of Faith. Court cases today have shown repeatedly that organizations must have a detailed Statement of Faith that includes a position on marriage, sexuality, and final authority.
- Review Job Descriptions. As an organization determine which positions (it may be all of them) must align with your statement of faith. This information needs to be included in the job description.
- Facility Use Statement. Many organizations routinely allow the use of their facilities by other nonprofits, community groups, etc. Unfortunately, without a facility use statement, your organization can face legal challenges if it does not have clear guidelines that tie back to the Statement of Faith.
- Code of Conduct. It is well-known and understood that employees represent the organization where they work just as each of us represents Christ to the rest of the world. Your organization may want to consider having a code of conduct for your employees that tie back to the Statement of Faith and details what is considered appropriate behavior and what is not. Clearly outlining this information will protect the organization in the event an employee’s position must be terminated for inappropriate conduct.
Clearly, these are areas where most organizations where most organizations have never had to go. But, as we go into the future, it is going to be absolutely essential to ensure your organization is protected from societal standards that do not align with biblical standards.
Is your organization prepared?
We can help. For just $97, we will review your by-laws and other documents and make recommendations to strengthen them to ensure the organization is protected. Register today, your documents will be reviewed and returned with suggestions. You will be contacted with a list of documents to forward to us as well as a list of questions to provide us with additional information.