THE Salvation Army's International Vision of One Army, One Mission, One Message, launched in October 2011, continues to inspire Salvationists around the world. Now, thanks to a new multi-format teaching resource produced through International Headquarters (IHQ), the unity of the International Vision can be worked towards in a practical way, bringing Salvationists into a closer understanding of what it means to be part of 'One Army'.
The One Army website (www.salvationarmy.org/onearmy) opens with an introduction from General André Cox, who writes: 'For those who want to know more about The Salvation Army, this is the most up-to-date, informative and concise guide available. For Salvationists who want to confirm their own faith and mission, this is as reliable and authentic guide you will find anywhere. For those who want to broaden their horizons, support and encourage others around the world and learn about other cultures, this will achieve all those aims.'
Commissioner Robert Street, Chair of The Salvation Army's International Doctrine Council, was given the task of devising and producing a teaching resource that can be used around the world. He told All the World magazine that a shared understanding is vital in an ever-expanding Army which now ministers in 126 countries. 'It is crucial that it stays united, grows authentically and continues to be what it was always meant to be ... an expression of the one Church Universal, showing the heart and love of God,' he says.
The resource is provided across a variety of formats, through booklets, videos and other online material. The initial batch covers four teaching 'units' (with more to follow):
- The Introduction: One Army – One Life
- One Army – in Calling
- One Army – in Covenant
- One Army – in Christ
'Each of the booklets has its own corresponding film,' explains the commissioner. 'We produce them as DVDs and the films are also on the website', along with subtitles. 'We are currently working towards 20 subtitle languages on the web.'
The commissioner adds: 'It is inspiring to be aware of the energy and expertise being applied to this,' revealing that the General calls the One Army teaching resource 'IHQ's gift to the world'.
With so many languages involved, arrangements for the printing of materials are being negotiated according to the situation. Shared printing is being arranged for territories and commands that share a common language. Where a language is unique to its own country, separate arrangements are being made according to local preference.
In a letter to Salvation Army leaders, Commissioner Street explains: 'There is no set timeline for the use of One Army. It can and should be used at whatever time best suits the programme and ministry of the territory, command, and each corps. It is for ongoing use and will be added to and updated regularly, keeping it fresh and relevant. Discussion and participation through the website will be encouraged, further adding to the international impact of this initiative.' Participants can contribute to the discussions on the website, using their Twitter, Facebook or email accounts to join in.
The next three units of the programme will be available in mid-2014.
- For updates, follow @TSAOneArmy on Twitter
Tags: The General