The previous post, a section from O&R for Corps Officers in 1930, is the section about Village Warfare. Following on from the bit of stuff about Brigades, there was a few things that caught my eye in this chapter.
Firstly, there is just the huge concept of reaching the whole district, even beyond the immediate corps’ town or area. The importance of reaching small villages, is dealt with most practically. But yet, just because a place wasn’t big enough to host a corps, they could still be ‘worked’ in a regular way.
Secondly, there is the ingenuity of the preaching station, or the ‘Battery’. This was something we carried over from Methodist days, but what a practical way to get the message out. The modern day equivalent has to be the ‘gospel bus’ …you know, buses that are driven into areas of a community and opened up for people to come on. I know that the 614 Melbourne (see picture above) folks have one and I know, here in the UK, that the Church Army have one or two as do the Jesus Army. The idea of a mobile unit to take the gospel and the Army’s message is still a valid idea.
Thirdly, in relation to the battery, we see something of an intersting deployment of officer forces. Here are officers being deployed for the sole purpose of running an evangelistic unit out of the, dare I say, confines of the pastoral post. We need to discover again how to best assign our officers, and recognise that not all are primarily pastors (you’ll have heard me bang on about that before, no doubt.) In relation to wise use of forces, there is the total common sense approach to the circle corps, a collection of small groups called societies with their own expression in their various location, but a shared officer.
On the whole, I think we just see a ‘we must do what we can to save the world’ attitude coupled with some creativity in doing that. How often do we thing of the small communities in our area? Do we ever think about taking an Army presence there? Could there be, as the O&R say some undiscovered treasure in areas where there may never be a corps but there could be people contacted, saved and employed in the fight? We need to cast the net bigger…put out our nets on the other side of the boat sometimes.