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Health and Accountability of Partners

Personal Health and Accountability:

HarvestNet International affirms that healthy marriages and families of leaders are essential to healthy churches and ministries.  To that end, HarvestNet promotes and encourages healthy marriages and families.  Divorce is a great evil that not only destroys marriages and families but also ministries, churches, and businesses because it denies the redemptive power of Jesus to heal broken persons and relationships.  Initiating divorce for grounds other than infidelity (Mathew 19:3-10) and abandonment (1 Corinthians 7:10-16) is a serious moral failure.  Partners who are victims of divorce should inform the HNI board who will seek to act redemptively on a case-by-case basis, giving due consideration to the counsel of the church elders or ministry board.

Healthy familial and ministerial relationships also require appropriate accountability to one another within the context of biblical boundaries.  When those boundaries are violated, the HNI board will engage in the redemptive process provided by God in the Bible (Mathew 18:15-20, Galatians 6:1, Luke 17:3, 1 Corinthians 5:1-5), seeking to restore persons to their appropriate function within the Kingdom of God.

Organizational Health and Accountability:

The New Testament modeled corporate accountability of one church to another (Acts 15) and of churches to apostles (1 Corinthians 4:14-21) while recognizing the responsibility and integrity of each church to arrange its own oversight and governance (Acts 20:28-35).  Such principles promote healthy churches and ministries, healthy businesses, and healthy relationships.

HarvestNet International expects each partner organization (church, ministry, or marketplace partner) and SENT missionary to arrange clearly defined oversight and outside accountability.  Although HarvestNet does not exercise central government over its various partners, by entering into partner relationships, HarvestNet accepts some responsibility for the health of its partners.  In light of this, HarvestNet expects partners to inform their oversight teams and the HNI board of any serious issues and to invite their oversight and HNI leadership into a place of discernment to make recommendations regarding those issues.  Such issues include but are not limited to the following:

  • Serious moral failure within the leadership team, the elders, or the board
  • Heresy or false doctrine within the leadership team, the elders, or the board
  • Misappropriation of funds
  • Intractable conflict between the primary leader(s) and the leadership team, the elders, or the board
  • Intractable conflict amongst the leadership team, the elders, or the board
  • Persistent failure of the primary leader(s) to fulfill the responsibilities of their office
  • Dissolution of the church, ministry, or business
  • Involvement in activities that could damage the integrity of the partner or HarvestNet
  • Withdrawing of the partner from HarvestNet

In these or similar situations, the HNI board (or its representatives) would work alongside the partner to resolve the issue redemptively and legally as required.  In situations where leadership is functioning in a healthy manner, the HNI board would only need to be informed.  In rare situations and at its own discretion, the HNI board would request involvement in the resolution of the issues.  In such situations, partners should receive and cooperate with the HNI board (or its representatives) in a spirit of godly submission for the benefit of the organization (Hebrews 13:17).  In all situations, HarvestNet will honor the biblical principles described above.

Next: Credentialing of Partners