Protection Policy Rationale
“Finally, brothers and sister, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me and the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:8-9 Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs.” Mark 10:14b
Children are a precious and sacred gift given to the community by God. They come into the community trusting those responsible for their nurture and care. It is through our actions with children that they learn what it is to be part of the family of God.
Leadership in the church demands the highest standards of moral integrity and personal responsibility. Violation of the trust of children and their parents breaks relationship not only with the church as the people of God but possibly destroys faith in God. Therefore, in order to welcome children into Jesus’ arms the First Presbyterian Church of Knoxville provides this policy. Our goal is to safeguard the children who are entrusted to our care and those called to serve Jesus Christ by caring for them. As members of this congregation and of the Body of Christ, along with parents and guardians, we make a covenant to undertake the Christian nurture of each child when she or he is baptized. Our commitment to Christian nurture means that we will help care for these children by providing them with a safe and nurturing environment, as well as teaching them the gospel and living out the faith as positive role models.
Criteria for Service
We are currently working toward every employee and volunteer being approved to work with children or youth with consent to a criminal background check, filling out a volunteer or employee application, and attending Safe Sanctuaries training. There will be no exceptions to this requirement.