Paul exhorts believers, “Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you” (2 Corintians 13:11). Though we strive for unity, there will still inevitably be times when we do not see issues in the same way, and we may have differences or conflict in our community. When these arise, we should first seek to resolve issues between the individuals involved, avoiding gossip or escalating a situation that can be resolved peacefully. This practice covers a wide variety of situations where open communication offers each of us the chance to interact in mature and responsible ways. It provides opportunities to hear each other and to respond to differences of opinion while seeking to resolve conflict.
A model for this can be found in Matthew and is often referred to as the "Matthew 18 Principle." While the passage uses the context of sin, it also works as a sound communication principle for other situations. “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.' If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector” (Matthew 18: 16 - 18).
To apply scriptural principles to conflict resolution, the following approaches should be carefully considered and followed:
- Please first talk directly with the person concerned, if possible. Both parties should attempt to listen to one another to determine clearly what the facts are regarding the areas of concern.
- If you have concerns about your ability to deal directly with the other party, please consult with your principal or other Leadership Team member.
- Though we care for one another, advocating for others without their involvement usually causes more harm than good and is not allowed at CAJ (see Third-Party Advocacy). We can help our colleagues by encouraging them to follow correct procedures or walk through the process with them.
- If, after meeting together, the issue cannot be resolved, please involve your supervisor or another member of the Leadership Team.
- If this does not bring resolution, the head of school should be contacted.
- Some conflicts are not resolved by talking one-to-one. If there is an imbalance of power involved or if one party believes he or she may have been harassed by another party, please refer to CAJ’s Harassment Policy.
A more detailed description and the steps to a final resolution can be found in our
Child Protection Policy
CAJ's Child Protection Policy has its own process to protect all parties including the mandated reporter.
- Please use the Mandated Reporting Form to report child safety concerns. Non-staff adults should not confront other people’s children unless there is an immediate threat to a child’s safety. This applies to staff members when they are in the role of a parent.