The last several months have seen the development of a strategic plan for officer recruitment in the Canada and Bermuda Territory, by the candidates recruitment working group. The development of the plan included a survey of all officers and cadets asking some key questions, time spent in conversation and listening to other denominational leaders as it relates to their experience in pastoral recruitment, and learning from our ongoing recruitment efforts and processes.

As a result, four strategic priorities were identified to help continue the present momentum in officer recruitment. To see the plan in its entirety with relevant action steps, visit

Strategic Priority 1— Positive Role Models
Rationale: The relational influences of officers and local officers have the greatest impact on prospective candidates.
Goal: To demonstrate joy in ministry as a Salvation Army officer.

After reviewing the survey results, to which over half of our officer and cadet personnel from across the territory responded, it was evident that the biggest influences on an individual’s decision to become an officer were relational, primarily officers and local officers. It’s a reminder to all Salvationists, particularly those in leadership roles, that the ways in which we engage with others and respond to our ministry responsibilities play an important part in the life of a prospective candidate.

Strategic Priority 2— Identify and Recruit
Rationale: More than two-thirds of current officers cite that relational influencers, such as officers, family and local officers, had the greatest impact on their decision to become an officer. There is a need to shift from a culture where candidates primarily self-identify toward a reality where influencers proactively recruit and identify candidates.
Goal: To continuously find new people with candidate potential and “tap them on the shoulder.”

This strategic priority comes out of a need to adapt the culture of officer recruitment in our territory. It relates to the first priority, in that it again acknowledges the importance of relational influences. Here, though, the emphasis is on the identification of people’s giftings and spiritual maturity and engaging them in a discipleship process to help them discern if the best use of their gifts would be in the context of Salvation Army officership.

Strategic Priority 3— Mission and Values
Rationale: The Salvation Army has a unique role within the church and people are attracted to our mission and values.
Goal: To inspire prospective candidates by demonstrating the importance of the Salvation Army mission for our world today and the essential role of officer leaders.

The dynamic mission and values of The Salvation Army are never out of date. While there are people without the hope of Christ, while there is suffering and poverty, The Salvation Army’s mission will be relevant. Our hope is that as officers, soldiers, employees and volunteers continue to engage with the Army’s mission and give witness to life-changing stories, those whom God is calling to partner with us in our mission will be inspired to respond.

Strategic Priority 4— The Journey to Officer Training
Rationale: To inspire prospective candidates by demonstrating the importance of the Salvation Army mission for our world today and the essential role of officer leaders.
Goal: To make the journey to becoming a Salvation Army cadet or officer in training proactive, engaging and purposeful.

The fourth strategic priority emphasizes the journey that an individual takes to officer training. The desired outcome is that the journey will be one of discipleship, support and growth. It also highlights our procedures and processes, and the necessity for them to be purposeful and informative.

Our team has already begun working on several pieces of the strategic plan. You can read about one of our new initiatives here. Our invitation to all Salvationists is to give consideration and prayer as to how you can participate and partner with us in the development and recruitment of future officers. Reach out to your divisional secretary for candidates to offer your support, and me, to offer your feedback. We look forward with anticipation to all that God has in store for The Salvation Army in the Canada and Bermuda Territory.

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On Wednesday, February 10, 2021, Sue Derby said:

Excellent article.


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