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Page updated 3/1/11

Guidelines for Posting to Prayers For Pets

There are few real "rules" for posting to our mailing list. But a few guidelines help to keep things flowing smoothly, and also let prospective members have a better idea of how our group works and what will be expected of them if they join. Most of these guidelines are reasonably flexible and all members are encouraged to be familiar with these and to make suggestions as to changes in the guidelines. Whenever changes are made, this page will be updated and an announcement will be made on the mailing list.

1. New members are encouraged to post notes introducing themselves. It's certainly not required, but it does help us to get to know one another. PRIVATELY responding to introductory messages is also encouraged. One of our strengths is the bonds of friendship we form here.

2. Whenever you are aware of a prayer need - ANY prayer need - please post it as soon as possible. While our initial focus is pets and animals, we aren't limited to this. Prayer requests for people or situations are also welcome and encouraged. Simply put, almost anything you feel a need to pray for is appropriate to be posted on PrayersForPets as long as it isn't a possibly inflammatory topic (see #10 below), and as long as the situation is real.  Before you pass along something from the internet, please try to check its validity on snopes.com or some other way. 

3. We must always be aware of individuals' right to privacy, as well as copyright laws.  If you learn of a need through personal contact or private email, please either get permission to post it or leave names out of your post unless you are absolutely positive that the person won't mind. God knows the names so we don't really need to. If you want to forward a prayer need from another list, please get the original poster's permission or paraphrase the original post and leave out names. Of course an exception to this would be if the original post made a general request for prayer. Basically, just use good judgement here, and never just assume that it's okay to forward a private message.

3a. When you forward posts that have been sent to you, PLEASE remove all headers and email addresses of people it was previously sent to.  Copy/pasting the body of the message is much better than straight forwarding.  Our moderators are tired of having to remove this stuff, so if you send it we'll just send it back to you.

3b. Please do not forward material from other mailing lists other than prayer needs. 

3c. Posts and/or information from this list is NOT to be posted to other lists unless the original poster specifically gives permission.

4. Please post updates on people, pets or situations we are praying for as you become aware of them. This helps us to know when special praise and thanks are in order or if our prayers need to be changed.

5. Sharing of inspirational poems or brief stories that would be of interest to most of us in the context of our purpose is encouraged. These things help to strengthen our bonds of friendship and deepen our faith. Please do NOT post sermon-type material, bible study lessons, etc. This is a prayer list, not a Sunday school class.

6. If you have recently had prayers answered, even if the original need was never shared with the group, please feel free to tell us about it. Most of us need to be reminded sometimes that prayer changes things.

7. PRIVATE notes of support are certainly appropriate and usually appreciated by those who need them. These also strengthen the bond of caring that we have always shared.  Again, you are not required to email or correspond with anyone.   

8. Discussion of administrative matters should be done with Kate and/or Melanie (the list owners/moderators) privately . If changes are suggested that would affect us as a group, we can then post about them so they can be openly discussed.

8a. Discussion about or criticism singling out the specific posting practices of one or two people MUST NOT be posted on the list. If you have a problem with something someone else is doing, please email Kate or Melanie first and we will try to work it out. But public criticism just cannot be allowed and may result in immediate removal from the list.

9. This one isn't a suggestion, but a hard and fast zero tolerance rule. Flaming, whether done publicly or privately, in response to any PFP post, will NOT be tolerated. If you flame another member or a non-member who has requested prayers, even once, you will be permanently removed from the list.  If you are the victim of flaming, please forward the offensive message to the list moderators at PrayersForPets-owner @ yahoogroups.com  (remove the spaces before and after @ ) as soon as possible.

For those who may not be familiar with the term "flaming", the definition as it applies to PFP is here

10. Material and/or opinions on topics of a possibly inflammatory nature (such as for or against racing, dog shows, horse shows, rodeos, animal breeding, etc.) MUST NOT be posted here. We have faithful members among us who participate in some of these activities, as well as those who have strong feelings against them. Neither group will be subjected to abuse or criticism here. This includes message bodies AND signature lines .   There are other forums that can and should be used for opinions and debating. Other than discussions concerning our own policies as a group, this is not the proper forum for debates which could only serve to divide us. Our list is moderated, so posts of this type will not be approved for posting, and a warning will be issued.  Persistence will result in removal from the group.   

10a. Political issues are another no-no for our group.  Please refrain from posting any opinions regarding elections, candidates, or government policies.  We have Democrats, Independents, Republicans and other parties represented in our group.  If everyone is allowed to post their views we have an instant debate.  We don't want to go there on this list.

11. Our group encompasses a wide range of Christian denominations. While we all believe in God and the power of prayer, our methods and styles of prayer and worship may vary dramatically. Most of us view this diversity as one of our strengths. Sharing of what your particular denomination or style of worship is all about should be welcome here when other traffic is light. However, we should never allow any kind of "my religion is better than yours" discussion to get started. Also, because we are joyfully diversified, we should keep this fact in mind as we post so that no one feels left out.

12. To help protect our members from viruses, etc., attachments are not allowed on list posts.  If you try to post a message with attachments, your post will come through, but the attachment will not.  In some cases that just results in a blank post.   

13. Please think carefully about these guidelines and make any suggestions you think would improve our group's effectiveness.

14. If you have any questions or comments about the guidelines please email me before you join.

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