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CEO Blog - Our Core Values, Part 1

Posted on November 5th 2015 by Teen Challenge Canada
CEO Blog

Our Core Values, Part 1

Dan MurrayIn last week's CEO blog post we had a look at the Mission of Teen Challenge Canada.

Teen Challenge Canada has also adopted 5 Core Values. I will use the Blog over the next 5 weeks to review each of these.

As a Teen Challenge Canada staff member you are part of a vital, life-changing movement across Canada and around the world.

I must acknowledge at the outset that just because we have written down these core values doesn't mean we have achieved them - rather we aspire to increasingly reflect these values throughout Teen Challenge Canada. I would therefore encourage each of your to think about how we can better live out our core values and welcome any ideas or dialogue on the topic.

Our first Core Value is stated as follows:

We are Christian

We believe that God is the catalyst for change for people with life-controlling drug and alcohol problems.

Teen Challenge Canada is an addiction recovery organization that is anchored on a model of Christian discipleship and qualified counselling. Jesus makes the difference at Teen Challenge Canada and we have a long list of successful graduates, including many among our staff, who are living evidence of this reality.

We are convinced that the hope of the gospel is the very foundation of lasting recovery. There is forgiveness - a clean slate so that the student's past does not dictate his or her future. There is power to change - the student is not alone in this journey. And there is the dignity of knowing the student was created for a purpose and is loved by the Creator. These are powerful truths to hold on to on the journey of recovery and throughout life.

Furthermore, as a Christian organization, when we serve men and women seeking freedom from addiction, our staff and volunteers do so in response to Jesus' example and also to his call on their lives when he said 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.'

However, being a Christian does not mean being isolated, arrogant or unprofessional. To the contrary, it is my view that we must engage with other addiction recovery agencies, secular and faith-based, with a posture of humility, mutual respect and a willingness to learn. I also believe that we must deliver our program with such excellence that we will gain the respect of the broader addictions rehabilitation community, while not apologizing for our faith orientation.

A couple of final comments..some have stated that it is the Holy Spirit that changes the addict, not the program. Although i appreciate the sentiments of that statement, it is incomplete. The Holy Spirit does not work in a vacuum. God could have eradicated sin on earth with a simple command, but he didn't. Instead, he planted his feet on the ground, becoming one of us. He worked, ate, slept, laughed with friends, experienced pain, thirst, hunger and sadness. Ultimately, he experienced a very human death on a cross, all to achieve our salvation. It was earthy, gritty, spirit-integrated-with-humanity reality.

In the same way the Holy Spirit, building on the foundation of the gospel, weaves together all the elements of our program - counselling, spiritual formation, abstinence, discipline, work detail, outreaches, recreation, prayer, fellowship, frustration, close quarters, education, etc. - to bring about lasting change in the lives of our students.

Thank you for living out your faith in your role at Teen Challenge Canada!

Dan Murray, CEO


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