July 27, 2009

People have values. You know – those fundamental beliefs that shape your life, guide your actions, challenge you at odd moments when your values may conflict with each other.

Organizations have values, too. You’ll find the values of the Women’s Fund of RI at www.wfri.org and on my website.

Last week I was at Saint Mary’s University in Winona, Minnesota. Since 2000, I’ve had the honor and pleasure of teaching there for the Masters Program in Philanthropy and Development. Each year I meet a new cohort of students and reconnect to previous cohorts. Each year we question and challenge and learn from each other.

And this year, I picked up a small card from one of the students. A small powerful card from Goshen College. I was moved by the Goshen Values & Mission on that card:

“At Goshen College, we’re guided by our Christ-centered core values of passionate learning, servant leadership, blogal citizenship and compassionate peacemaking.

As a liberal arts colleage, GC is dedicated to the development of informed, articulate, sensitive, responsible Christians.

As a ministry of Mennonite Church USA, we seek to integrate Christian values with educational, social and professional life.

And as a community of faith and learning, we strive to foster personal, intellectual, spiritual and social growth in every person. We view education as a moral activity that produces servant leaders for the church and the world.”

And on the other side of the card, there was this:

“At Goshen, we’re passionate about making peace in all its forms. Because we put God before anything else, we believe in care of one another – and care of the earth.

We strive to be non-defensive, non-violent, and never intolerant.

We accept people not like ourselves.

We are passionate about making peace with other faiths, with other opinions, with all kinds of ideas.

We’re for people who want to live loving kindness. To serve with joy. To heal the world, peace by peace.”

Thank you, Goshen College, for such beauty.

Filed under: Social Commentary

About Simone Joyaux

A consultant specializing in fund development, strategic planning, and board development, Simone P. Joyaux works with all types and sizes of nonprofits, speaks at conferences worldwide, and teaches in the graduate program for philanthropy at Saint Mary’s University, MN. Her books, Keep Your Donors and Strategic Fund Development, are standards in the field.

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