The 10 iCOR values

Living our values together

The mission of Jesus:
Holistic discipleship

iCOR is oriented on the mission that Jesus has given to us in supporting people in holistic discipleship. Calling people to become disciples of Jesus is not just another program for the church, but much rather its central mission. In order to do justice to this task, the local church must be actively involved in four areas that help lead young people as well as anyone else to become disciples of Jesus:

  • Foster Relationships – reach in
    (e.g. spiritual and social fellowship: Acts 2:46–47; Eph 4:2–3; John 13:34–35)
  • Nurture Spiritual Growth – reach up
    (e.g. 2 Cor 5:17; 2 Thess 1:3; Gal 5:16, 18, 22–23)
  • Promote Mission – reach out
    (e.g. 2 Cor 5:18–20; Acts 9:36, 39)
  • Cultivate Empowerment – reach beyond
    (e.g. Jer 1:7, 9–10; Eph 3:20–21; 4:7–16; 2 Tim 2:2; 4:1–2)

“This concept of the church as ‘the people of God’ -- as God’s new society, his family, his community – breaks upon many today as the most thrilling ‘good news’ they could ever hear. And what transformation it can bring when a person knows that he belongs to God and his people for ever! In an age of isolation, the joy of really belonging to God and of being a part of his people throughout the world – a belonging which depends not on earning acceptance, but on receiving freely of God’s love – is one of the most relevant features of the Christian message of good news.”

David Watson, I Believe in the Church (Grand Rapids/Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company: 1978), S. 76.

The 10 iCOR values

On the basis of empirical research, scientific studies and sociological findings, the New Testament understanding of the church and the writings of Ellen G. White, ten fundamental values have been defined that a church should deliberately and continuously develop and evaluate if it wants to be family of God in the biblical sense. These values should be discussed regularly at church board meetings and will help churches to concentrate on core issues that foster the growth of the church as a spiritual home and safe sanctuary for people of all generations, cultures and social backgrounds. The ten iCOR values are not additional programs that a church simply needs to implement. They much rather nurture the commitment and attitude fostered by the church to be family of God and form an intergenerational community of believers in order to satisfy the spiritual needs of young people in a special way. These values form the foundation for further church activities and help the church to define and implement its individual goals.

“The church is the evangelistic strategy…The most evangelistic thing the church can do, therefore, is to be the church not merely in public but as a new and alternative public; not merely in society but as a new and distinct society, a new and unprecedented social existence.”

Bryan Stone, Evangelism After Christendom: The Theology and Practice of Christian Witness (Grand Rapids, MI: Brazos Press, 2007), p. 15-16.

iCOR is based on …

… New Testament theology and understanding of faith and the church, e.g.:

  • Joseph H. Hellerman, When the Church Was a Family:
    Recapturing Jesus’ Vision for Authentic Christian Community (Nasville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2009)
  • Richard Rice, Believing, Behaving, Belonging: Finding New Love for the Church (Roseville, CA: The Association of Adventist Forums, 2002)

… sociological research concerning life in the church community and the spiritual growth of the generations in the church, e.g.:

  • Holly Catterton Allen and Christine Lawton Ross, Intergenerational Christian Formation – Bringing the Whole Church Together in Ministry, Community and Worship (Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2012)
  • Howard Vanderwell, ed. The Church of All Ages – Generations Worshiping Together (Herndon, VA: The Alban Institute, 2008)

… the findings of the Valuegenesis studies in the USA and Europe, e.g.:

  • Bailey V. Gillespie and Michael J. Donahue, Valuegenesis: Ten Years Later – A Study of Two Generations (Riverside, CA: Hancock Center Publications, 2004)
  • Stephan Sigg, “A Spiritual Home for Young People? The Adventist Youth and Their Church Seen from the Valuegenesis Europe Data” Part I-III, Spes Christiana Band 24, 2013

… empirical research on the church dropout issue and youth, e.g.:

  • Roger L. Dudley, Why our Teenagers Leave the Church (Hagerstown, MD: Review and Herald, 2000)
  • David Kinnaman, You Lost Me. – Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church…And Rethinking Faith (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2011)
  • Ed Stetzer, Richie Stanley, and Jason Hayes, Lost and Found: The Younger Unchurched and the Churches That Reach Them (Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2009)

… scientific studies on the transmission of faith in families and churches, e.g.:

  • Vern L. Bengtson, Norella M. Putney and Susan Harris, Families and Faith: How Religion is Passed Down Across Generations (New York: Oxford University Press, 2013).
  • Eugene C. Roehlkepartain, Pamela Ebstyne King, Linda Wagner, and Peter L. Benson, The Handbook of Spiritual Development in Childhood and Adolescence (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2006)

… the writings of Ellen G. White, in particular:

  • Ellen G. White, Education (Hagerstown, MD: Review and Herald, 1952
  • Ellen G. White, Gospel Workers (Washington, DC: Review and Herald, 1915)

“Intergenerational ministry occurs when a congregation intentionally brings the generations together in mutual serving, sharing or learning within the core activities of the church in order to live out being the Family of God and body of Christ to each other and the greater community.“ Christine M. Ross, „A Qualitative Study Exploring Churches Committed to Intergenerational Ministry”

(doctoral dissertation, Saint Louis University, MO, 2006), p. 127.