When you violate the rules at the Honor Academy, you are brought before the Honor Council. The Honor Council is comprised of other interns who have been voted to be “the most honorable.” They will hear your case and give the leadership a recommendation for your punishment, either probation or dismissal.
According to their training manual (which was supplied to me by a former Honor Council member) the purpose of the Honor Council is:
An Honor Council case is not a counseling session and Honor Council members are not counselors. The purpose of the case is not rehabilitation.
The panel should focus on:
1. Understanding the details and nature of the violation
2. Determining the condition of the participant’s heart.
3. Making a recommendation for disciplinary action.
I’m glad to know that purpose of confronting “sin” is not rehabiliation but punishment. (sarcasm)
They also sent me this case study that is used in training the members of the council.
Case Study #1:
I went home over this past Christmas for vacation. Before I left, I spoke with my accountability partner about a guy (Bob) back home that I used to date. We set up guidelines for us to follow and we were going to call each other every other day. We also agreed that I would not see him by myself.
The day after Christmas, Bob’s brother slipped and fell down stairs and was hurt pretty bad. He went to the hospital with his brother. Our families go to the same church so my mom had heard what happened and let me know what was going on. She told me that Bob had gone to the hospital. I went down there and ended up talking with Bob and his sister for an hour. Bob’s sister left for dinner and left Bob and I alone in a private waiting room. He was a little upset so I put my arm around him to comfort him. After a few minutes he seemed to be better.
After that we kept talking and he asked me about the possibility of “us” after Teen Mania. I told him it was possible. We kept talking and I leaned over to pick up my drink and he leaned over and kissed me. I pulled away and told him that I could not do that. He understood and did not try it again. We sat there talking for about 15 minutes longer when his sister came back. I left about an hour later.
I went home and felt bad so I told my dad about what happened. My dad is a pastor. He told me that Bob should have known better and that I had done nothing wrong so I needed to stop feeling guilty.
I came back to Garden Valley and felt a little guilty but I remembered what my dad had said so I tried to forget about it. Then yesterday, I was talking with a new intern about the rules and they brought up romantic contact and quick repentance. After talking with them, I knew I had to talk with someone so I told Ellen, my accountability partner, and we went to my advisor to tell her what had happened.
I am very sorry that this happened. I guess I just wasn’t thinking. I have learned a lot about foresight from this whole situation. I am not going to talk to Bob anymore until after I finish the internship. I truly am sorry about this and hope to continue on here with the program.
If you are a former intern and/or are familiar with the HA rules, there are 2 questions I’d like you to answer in the comments.
1) In light of the HA handbook, what rules (if any) did this intern break and what should the consequences be?
2) In light of Scripture and the heart of Jesus, what “rules” did this intern break and what should the consequences be?
In the next post, we will hear directly from former members of the Honor Council on how they decided this case and how they came to their decision.