The Salvation Army
= International Christian religious and charitable movement organised and operated on a military pattern founded by William Booth (1829 - 1912) in 1865
After his marriage in 1855 he spent several years as a Methodist minister, travelling around the country, preaching and sharing God`s word to all who would listen. One day in 1965 he preached to a crowd of people in the street in the East End of London (slum). The listeners were so impressed by his powerful preaching that they asked him to lead a series of meetings.
To the poor and wretched of London's East End, Booth brought the good news of Jesus Christ and his love for all men. He formed his own movement which he called `The Christian Mission`. Slowly the mission began to grow. Mission stations to feed and house the poor were established. Soon, they had much disorderly opposition in some places. But they did not care for that. In 1878 the `The Christian Mission` changed, after 13 years, its name into `Salvation Army`.
He and his son established the Army on a military pattern, with William Booth as general for life. The idea of an army fighting sin caught the imagination of the people and the Army began to grow rapidly. It spread quickly over England, Wales and Scotland and then expanded internationally.
Today, their members come from many different cultural backgrounds and enjoy an international fellowship knowing no barriers of age, sex or race. The Salvation Army operates as a religious and charitable organisation all around the world.
The military style of the Salvation Army
proved to be a most effective stimulant to the progress of the Army's work in the fight against evil.
1. The General:
- issues all orders and regulations
- based at the International Headquarters in London
- is the international leader of the Salvation Army
- travels widely wherever the army is active.
- is elected by the High Council for a term of 5 years
- makes the policy
2. The Officers:
- command a corps or other responsible jobs like chief of staff
- are the equivalent of ministers of other Protestant churches
- complete a two year residential course at a training college
- on commissioning they receive the rank of a lieutenant
after 5 years: captain
after 15 years: major
- are employed on a full-time basis
- have to wear uniforms
3. The Soldiers:
- ordinary members of the Salvation Army
- most have their own job
- can wear a uniform
- converts who desire to become a soldiers in the Army are required to sign the "Articles of War" (which state their beliefs and accept certain moral rules, e.g. no drugs and alcohol) and they volunteer their services
4. The Local Officers:
- accept particular responsibility in a corps, e.g. the finance of the corps
- do not get money
- wear a uniform
5. The Adherents
- believe in the doctrines of the Salvation Army, but who do not wish to make all the commitments
6. The basic unit of the Army is the corps
- local centre seen in most big cities across the country
- each week, people meet there for worship, singing or other events
Folie1, Seite2 Uniforms:
Not all Salvation Army members wear a uniform. It's a personal choice to do so, but the reasons for wearing it remain unchanged.
It stands for
- a commitment in the war against evil
- a personal testimony to the wearer's own Christian faith and practice
- the availability of the Salvationist to anyone needing a helping hand or a listening ear Partly because of pride and because of economic necessity (a uniform cost the 3 weeks`salary in 1890) many Salvationists wore their uniforms on any occasion.
According to culture and climate, different uniforms may be worn, but they are all navy blue and show the rank.
1. advancement of - the Christian religion
- the relief of poverty
2. the spiritual, moral and physical reformation of all who need it
3. the reclamation of - the vicious
4. visitation among the poor, lowly and sick
5. a church for everybody, everyone is welcome
- include the basic principles of a Protestant church
- ignore controversial issues
- say that the sacraments are not necessary to the salvation of the soul
- lay the greatest emphasis upon the need for conversation
- self-sacrifice for the sake of the salvation army
(Folie 2), zurück
An important work of the Salvation Army in all parts of the world is its reclamation and permanent regeneration of alcoholics.
Internationally The Salvation Army works in more than 100 countries. There are over 14 000 Corps, as well as a range of social, medical and educational community services.
The world-wide programme includes:
- accommodation for the homeless
- occupational centres
- food for the hungry
- care for the elderly
- health care in own hospitals
- children programmes (e.g. holiday camps, play centres, ...)
- family welfare aid
- fighting leprosy
- help for the blind and for handicapped people
- alcoholism and drug addiction
- searching for missing relatives (e.g. after a war)
Anja Schmitt, Lk Englisch, 07.12.1998