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Q&A: Disciplining Church Employees

My executive pastor is attempting to add more requirements to the employee discipline agreement I signed. What can I do?

I am an employee at a church. Recently, I engaged in conduct that the church considers sinful. I was questioned by the church's executive pastor about this conduct and ultimately signed a document agreeing to certain actions to discipline, educate, and counsel me. After I signed the document, the executive pastor attempted to add additional requirements to my discipline. What rights, if any, do I have in this situation?

For most jurisdictions, a church is considered an "at-will" employer. This means that an employee can be terminated at any time, with or without cause, and conversely, the employee can resign at any time for any or no reason. The "at-will" employment arrangement can be altered if there is a written agreement that changes the employment relationship, such as an employee contract. However, assuming the employment relationship in the question above is ...

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Posted:
  • May 25, 2010

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