Corps Review Report

Corps Reviews are fun. Really..they are. They are most helpful for ministry and for helping people reflect on what we do and what we are.

We are taking a bit of a leaf out if the Australian Eastern Territory’s book and measuring ourselves against General Gowans little purpose statement ‘Saving Souls, Growing Saints, Serving Suffering Humanity’, thoroughly assessing our current practice by scripture and using Gowan’s phrase for guidance and vision.

Today we looked at being the big picture of what God calls us to be, generally, as his Salvation Army. We spent time searching scripture and fleshing out who we are called to be. I commented recenly over at Urban Army that I’m sceptical about gimmicks when it comes to ‘measuring’ a corps’ success when really the only rod should be scripture and who God calls us to be.

We have an excellent corps at Pill, not without our challenges, but thoroughly excelllent when compared to some other situations I know well. We truly are on the brink of acheiving something and really understanding God’s heart for us.

The last few months have been difficult for our folks…they don’t always understand where we are coming from and because of that I think they think we’re out to wreck their corps. In a sense we are, but on the contrary we are totally not. We’ve had to risk being unpopular at times (sometimes intentionally, sometimes by virtue of the fact that I can be obnoxious and difficult…but I am Scottish).

There are other situations where we would not have been able to push so hard. But its so important we align ourselves with God’s will for the corps and The Salvation Army.

On of the people sharing with us today was upset at a Booth quote (not upset in the offended way, but in the ‘made me think’ way. Booth said:

“I do not want another ecclesiastical corps cumbering the earth. When The Salvation Army ceases to be a militant body of red hot men and women whose supreme business is the saving of souls, I hope it will vanish utterly.”

I feel very much like that. Jesus didn’t speak highly of lukewarmness in Revelation 3:16 (or thereabouts).

So, I am fully aware that I am a big pill to swallow (in more ways than one) but God forbid that I should fail to lead the corps into greater purposes for the sake of being Captain Popular. It comes down to trust in my motives. Many suspect them, and rightly so because I’d be troubled if people just accepted the words I whisper in their ears.

A big hat tip to the other brave leaders in our corps…for being willing to dare. For being open to God and his promting, for asking the big questions alongside us and for simply being leaders for such a time as this.

You know, it may not be too long before our term at Pill is ‘history’ (if the last nearly two years are anything to go by!) and each persons perspective of history will judge us differently…by my concern is to make sure that its Gods will that counts.

We’re priming ourselves up to Save Souls, Grow Saints and Serve our Suffering Humanity. You’re prayers appreciated as always.

yours, under the flag,


3 thoughts on “Corps Review Report

  1. PS: “What is a Salvation Army Corps? To this I reply, that it is a band of people united together to attack and Christianize an entire town or neighbourhood” (William Booth). “We are sent to war. We are not sent to minister to a congregation and be content if we keep things going. We are sent to make war – and to stop short of nothing but the subjugation of the world to the sway of the Lord Jesus (William Booth).”If only I weren’t a Boothite….life would be easier…

  2. Very true. God did not raise the army up to be just another denomination – there are plenty of those, no need for anymore. Instead he raised up an army to take Salvation, not community spirit or inclusiveness or self-esteem or any other fashoinable distraction, to those beyond the reach of normal Churches.

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