We, the priests serving the Diocese of St. Petersburg, issue the following Standards of Professional Responsibility. In this document, we hope to publicly define the professional standards that are lived faithfully by the priests of our Diocese. As leaders in the Church founded by Christ, we must always seek to uphold Christian values and conduct. In addition to following the Gospel and its mandates, we want to strive to act properly at all times in the light of contemporary society and its needs.
These Standards of Professional Responsibility do not presume to address all of the responsibility that we have to face in the diversity of our ministry. What it does establish is a set of minimal professional standards.
We hope that these Standards will stimulate discussion within the Church community in order to build consensus of standards of practice. These Standards are not intended to supersede canon or civil law.
Responsibility for adherence to these Standards rests with each of us. The Diocese will provide programs to assist members in understanding and living these Standards, when such programs are deemed useful and necessary.
Our conduct as Church leaders, both public and private, has the potential to inspire and motivate people, or scandalize and weaken their faith. We must be aware of the responsibilities that accompany our work. We also know that God’s goodness and graces support us in our ministry.