ECCLESIASAFE CONSULTATION GROUP
This agreement is intended to describe the nature of the volunteer consultation provided to Ecclesial elders by the EcclesiaSafe Consultation Group (ESCG).
All support is provided on a voluntary basis by brothers and sisters who have demonstrated training, expertise and experience with allegations of abuse in its various forms as tragically happens in our ecclesias from time to time. We recognize that God’s wisdom, as taught in His Scripture, is the ultimate guide for each of us personally and ecclesially, and sound Biblical teaching underpins all of our consultation efforts.
Usual features of this consultation agreement:
- We recognize the unique and sensitive nature of any alleged abuse situation. While there is rarely 100% certainty about the best course of action, we will rely on established professional knowledge and practice relating to abuse allegations. We fully appreciate that these kinds of crises are very challenging to ecclesial boards and offer our support recognizing the urgent and emotional nature of these kind of allegations.
- This volunteer consultation engagement is designed to be a time-limited engagement of support, usually occurring over one to a handful of consultation meetings. Longer and more in-depth support is more unusual but can be discussed with your volunteer consultant.
- To keep our role clear of any potential conflicts, we won’t engage victims or alleged offenders directly. Nor will your consultant agree to providing other supports to your specific ecclesia (Bible classes, seminars) when that can at all be avoided.
- We agree to keep our conversations with you strictly confidential. We will not share any identifying information about your ecclesia, its members, or the nature of the allegations of abuse. We reserve the right to share anonymous or approximated information amongst the ESCG for purposes of peer support and internal consultation but will not share any information that could be tied back to your ecclesia or situation.
- We are obligated to follow laws on abuse reporting and require that as ecclesial elders also follow all applicable local laws on abuse reporting. Should it arise, we must maintain the right to notify law enforcement officials should you fail to do so when required. We would however not take any independent action without first discussing with you for resolution should this ever arise.
- We expect that as an ecclesia, you will cooperate with your local authorities, who might be investigating abuse allegations. We would follow that same expectation should it ever be expected of us as well.
- Our consultation is provided on a voluntary basis, and any actions taken regarding alleged abuse must be the full responsibility of you as ecclesial leaders. We will do our best to guide you, but we cannot take responsibility for the actions or inactions of members of your ecclesia.
- We will encourage the review and adoption of EcclesiaSafe policies, materials, trainings, etc. Other materials, Christadelphian or not, might be recommended to you as aids for your situation.
- Our engagement with you is voluntary and at your pleasure. You can request a change of consultants or the second opinion of another ESCG Consultant at any time.
- You agree to allow your Consultant to maintain confidential documentation of your conversations, and to share anonymized data on our interactions so that the ESCG might track its own activities and issues over time.
Thank you for your agreement to these basic principles, and your volunteer Consultant can discuss any of this with you whenever needed. May God bless our mutual efforts to care for your ecclesia and each of its members, young and old.