As a historically Black Christian institution of higher learning dedicated to the development of lay and clergy leadership with a liberating and transforming spirituality, creating communities of justice and reconciliation on the local and global levels, we commit ourselves to the following covenant:

•We commit ourselves to practicing and pursuing integrity in academic and professional excellence from the classroom to the office to the board room, through our use and allocation of time, talents, and resources—physical, intellectual, and financial.

•We commit ourselves to maintaining and supporting mutual respect and integrity for ourselves, individuals and the community through our daily interactions with each other in the use of appropriate language and behavior.

•We commit ourselves to acts of gender inclusivity.

•We commit ourselves to the enhancement and nurture of appropriate needs of individuals and the community in ways that build up the healthy functioning of both.

•We commit ourselves to respecting the diversity of ecumenical, theological, ideological, and personal expressions of the various faiths and traditions found in our community.

•We commit ourselves to celebrating and building upon the best of our African culture and heritage through our work and life together.

•We commit ourselves to the pursuit of intellectual excellence through the open engagement of critical thought and debate and through the honest critique of each other’s ideas and beliefs.

•We commit ourselves to providing a safe physical and psychological environment for all members of the community regardless of one’s race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, ability, or any other characteristic protected by law.

•We commit ourselves to maintaining and providing services and physical resources and spaces which promote the mission and fiscal integrity of the institution, and which demonstrate appreciation and celebration of the gifts of others.

•We commit ourselves to holding each other and ourselves accountable to adhering to the statements made in this covenant.

After reading/reviewing the ITC Code of Ethics, please respond to the following questions.

1. Define ethics.

2. Why is there a need for codes of ethics?

3. How does the ITC Code of Ethics serve as a guiding principle for theological education and ministers, pastors, teachers?

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1. The ITC Code of Ethics dwells mostly upon moral commitments on behalf of the institution and its members and participants. However, some of the commitments deal with the legal aspect of the ITC work. They are, for instance, a pledge to provide safe environment to any individual possessing characteristics “protected by law” as well as a reference to “fiscal integrity” at the end of the Code. Nevertheless, by and large, the Code deals with moral, or ethical issues. Based on the Code we can define ethics as a set of rules, habits and practices delineating individual's and group's behavior in relation to other individuals and groups. Ethics is, first and foremost, an art of relating to others in a considerate and mindful way, or, in other words, constant caring awareness of our neighbor, with his or her interests, needs, peculiarities, virtues, and shortcomings. I think the Code sufficiently covers that definition of ethics specifically referring to individual and group characteristics that are, for historical and social reasons, in need of special protection and established fundamental equality of all despite race, color, gender, ethnic origin, and sexual orientation. Along with that, being an educational institution, ITC expresses its commitment to intellectual integrity, free search for truth, and critical thought....
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