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Jan3TueAs the territorial commander, I want to lead an Army that celebrates its relationship with God and others. Please join me in this time of focusing the vision as we become one Army with one mission sharing one message. January 3, 2012 by Commissioner Brian Peddle
Happy New Year! My wife, Rosalie, joins me in greeting you and we assure you of our prayers. We believe that God will bless and use The Salvation Army, and each of you, throughout 2012.
- Filed Under:
- Opinion & Critical Thought
As we enter this new year, I am reflecting on the many expressions of hope found in our territory. From my vantage point, General Linda Bond's vision plan of One Army, One Mission, One Message (see Salvationist.ca/international-vision) outlines the aspirations that I covet for our Army. As General Bond writes, “I see a Spirit-filled Army of the 21st century, convinced of its calling, moving forward together, into the world of the hurting, broken, lonely, disposed and lost, reaching them by all means, with the transforming message of Jesus bringing freedom, hope and life.”
In November 2011, the executive leaders in our territory (Cabinet secretaries and divisional leaders) met at Jackson's Point, Ont., and used the General's vision plan to strategize for the future. Though I write with deep personal conviction, my colleagues join me in sharing these thoughts.
We wish to affirm:
• a clear calling to a sacramental life for every Salvationist marked by sacrificial and selfless service and lived out in the framework of holiness. We remain committed to the non-practice of the sacraments of communion and baptism as a denomination and as a part of the international Salvation Army. This is not meant to put us at odds with other Christian traditions, but we testify freely to a full salvation expressed in a supreme love for God and sacrificial love for others
• a leadership conviction with regard to our witness through uniform wearing and our desire to increase our public visibility with our officer contingent leading the way
• the significant value of active officers, retired officers and local officers in meeting the leadership needs throughout The Salvation Army
• our desire that The Salvation Army in Canada and Bermuda would be a covenanted Army and that each of us would have the opportunity to explore covenant as we share faith and service together
• our partnership with the international Salvation Army as we give and support financially and facilitate the availability of human resources to help lead the Army around the world.
We want to:
• emphasize the importance and significance of discipleship and evangelism. We need soldiers who will carry out God's mission and win the world for him as a result of training and equipping
• ensure that in these days of spiritual drift in our culture, every Salvation Army ministry unit would have our spiritual footprint and would bring about Kingdom outcomes
• give thanks for excellent financial management that enables us to invest in new mission opportunities focused on outcome-based ministry
• reclaim and strengthen our ministry to the whole family, making children and youth a priority
• declare our desire for growth in every expression of our ministry and mission
• explore the principle that above all else “mission matters most,” praying that God will enable us to give evidence that this is so.
Introducing people to Jesus, securing their place in eternity and discipling them for service remains central to all we are and do. Our key message is that Jesus Christ is the hope for the world (see John 3:16; Luke 19:10). We are committed to sharing this message by:
• reaching children and youth
• advocating on behalf of those we serve
• serving from a position of strength and declaring, “God is doing a new thing”
• keeping our mission central to everything we do and managing the distractions
• calling people to salvation and covenant through the experience of soldiership
• asking every Salvationist to consider their part in being a transforming influence in their community.
As the territorial commander, I want to lead an Army that celebrates its relationship with God and others. As we do this, we will remain fit for purpose in the world in which we live and serve. We have the potential to be a mighty expression of God's love and faithfulness. Please join me in this time of focusing the vision as we become one Army with one mission sharing one message.
Commissioner Brian Peddle is the territorial commander of the Canada and Bermuda Territory.