Lots of reflection going on in the old SA blogsphere (aka Salvosphere) about significant happenings in the last decade. I’ve been thinking from the context of my own territory, noting some of the things that have stood out (good, bad and indifferent). Not commenting…just highlighting some biggies.
1. Starting with a recent one: the resignation of Major Chick Yuill, Russell Rook and Phil Wall from significant roles in the UK Territory. These guys are still around, but no longer in places of influence in the Territory…all doing their own thing outside the movement.
2. Massive impact of 24/7 prayer movement on the UKT. Championed by the excellent leadership of Commissioner Alex Hughes, but fuelled by so many passionate people. Add in this one the impact of Roots. Linked to this, the promotion to Glory of Major Jo Norton. Significant happenings, all of them.
3. The creation of Alove “The Salvation Army for a New Generation”.
4. The impending sale and relocation of William Booth College, Denmark Hill which, when I was in training, was as good as happening to the extent that we were getting ready to literally re-locate. Change of territorial leadership, decision quickly reversed.
5. Removal of some key support positions at DHQ level, such as property, fundraising and PR. These have had significant impacts on the work on the local fronts, and the workload of officers and other DHQ staffing.
6. Significant disappearance and subsequent (very) gradual return of officers from management posts in Salvation Army social service centres.
7. The publishing of the Strategic Mission document and the fact that now no-one will know what I’m talking about. What Strategic Mission document? Like wise, the peak of the 2020 vision concentration and the subsequent dissappearance of any reference to it.
8. The rank thing has already been aired, but the disappearance of the new but now defunct Lieutenants system in the UK is significant for many folks. It was pretty fully embraced in this Territory. Non-officer spouse arrangement fully engaged in this Territory too.
9. Four Territorial Commanders in 10 years for the UK (if you include 1999) in the form of Gowans, Hughes, Clifton and Matear. Two progressive radicals, two restorationist radicals. We’ve almost had a microcosm of what has happened Internationally in the Territory….still stating facts! No comment! Also commented elsewhere, the last three Generals have, at some point, been in territorial leadership of this territory.
10. New IHQ building in London which gives us all an opportunity to pop in for a very expensive sandwich, a peak at the General and the Cheif through the windows as you walk past between St Pauls Cathedral & the Tate Modern along the Millennium Bridge, and a nosey to see which IHQ commissioner eats what for lunch through all the glass.