- As CSI has grown to encompass many CSI family affiliates, we recognise the need to strengthen the sense of common understanding which binds us together as a ministering CSI family. We therefore identify the following principles as fundamental to the ministry and functioning of CSI:
Statement of Faith
- We believe in the Holy Trinity. We hold the Bible to be the inspired Word of God and we ascribe to the Apostles’ Creed.
- We recognise that God has entrusted CSI with a sacred mandate to stand in solidarity with His children who are suffering. God’s call to this work is seen both in the events that led to the foundation of CSI and in the clear biblical injunction to reach out to those in need as if their needs were our own.
- The biblical basis of our ministry is:
“If one part suffers, every part suffers with it.” (1 Corinthians 12:26, NIV)
The parable of the good Samaritan (Luke 10:25‑37)
- Our identity emerges from our sacred mandate. Therefore, our Identity is:
CSI is a Christian human rights organisation for religious liberty helping (i) victims of religious repression, (ii) victimised children, and (iii) victims of disaster.
- We understand this as follows:
- We promote and fight for religious liberty, as we consider the right to believe to be an integral part of God – given human dignity.
- We consider religious liberty to be the most important of the indivisible human rights.
- We combine explaining the importance of religious liberty intellectually with providing all available forms of practical assistance to persecuted Christians and other victims of repression.
- We place priority on our aid to suffering Christians, but also assist others suffering for their faith or convictions.
- We assist individuals and communities that are victims of repression of religious liberty.
- We assist orphans and abandoned children, as they are among the most vulnerable victims of present and past repressive political systems.
- We assist victims of disaster, as most disasters affecting large parts of a population are the result of human hatred, which usually also leads to the denial of religious liberty.
- While we are not a missionary organisation, we contribute to the holistic world-wide mission of the Church and act as a shield for missionaries.
- While we maintain full independence, we pursue good relationships with churches, political authorities and other NGOs.
- As we are called to the CSI ministry from many different denominations, nations and cultures we form a world-wide CSI family that transcends these boundaries.
- We recognise that part of the uniqueness and strength of our ability to fulfil the sacred mandate lies in the international and interdenominational co-operation as a Christian family which makes the services of CSI family affiliates that much more powerful.
- As “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the spiritual forces of evil” (Ephesians 6:12), prayer, in all its forms, is our lifeline.
- We demonstrate eternal hope in Jesus Christ through our work. The example that we follow is that of Christ. We seek to follow Him by the power of the Holy Spirit, in His solidarity with the persecuted, in His condemnation of sinful attitudes and unjust autocratic systems, in His special concern for children and in His call to share with one another. From Him we derive our understanding of the dignity and freedom of every individual as created in the image of God. We bear witness to the redemption offered in Jesus Christ.
- We maintain our identity as Christians, while being sensitive to the diverse Christian contexts and traditions in which we express that identity. We are part of the Body of Christ and pursue relationships with all Christians.
- We recognise our dependence upon God for the success of our ministry and acknowledge in this respect the importance of our personal lives being pleasing to Him.
- We demand from ourselves and all co-workers high standards of professional competence.
- We practise a participatory, open and motivating style in working relationships. We encourage the professional, personal and spiritual development of our co-workers.
- We are responsive to new opportunities. We encourage innovation, creativity and flexibility. We cultivate learning, reflection and discovery in order to increase our understanding and abilities.
- We create structures that guarantee dynamic growth and stability, as well as professional competence, that encourage the establishment of long-term goals which correspond to our sacred world-wide mandate.
- We aim at faithful stewardship. Resources are a sacred trust from God given through donors. We are faithful to the purpose for which these resources are given.
- We are transparent in our dealings with donor constituencies, project communities, governments, the public-at-large and each other.
- We maintain a co-operative attitude towards other Christian and humanitarian organizations.
- If a member of a CSI family affiliate can no longer identify himself/herself with CSI, he/she will leave CSI rather than create a split.
- Through misunderstandings, mistakes and sins, situations may arise among individuals or legal entities of our CSI family that seriously endanger harmonious co-operation in the pursuit of our mandate. In such cases the International Coordinating Committee has the authority to seek reconciliation and ways and means to correct the situation. If it fails, the International Council has the final authority to decide how the case is resolved.
- We recognise that this covenant must be lived.
- We therefore agree with each other before God, both individually and as affiliates within the CSI family, to uphold this CSI Family Covenant, to honour it in our decisions, to express it in our relationships, and to act according to it wherever and whenever CSI is at work.