26 January 2011

26 January 2011

THERE are nine candidates standing for election for The Salvation Army’s nineteenth General, where applicable, each of the candidates’ spouses affirmed their support regarding their husband’s candidacy.

Ten council members received, at least, the required minimum three nominations to be eligible to stand. One of the nominees declined to stand.

The candidates are (in alphabetical surname order): Commissioner Linda Bond, Commissioner Max Feener, Commissioner William Francis, Commissioner Dick Krommenhoek, Commissioner Christine MacMillan, Commissioner John Matear, Commissioner William Roberts, Commissioner Robert Street and Commissioner Barry Swanson. Commissioner James Knaggs declined.

(Candidates for election for the nineteenth General of The Salvation Army, from left: Commissioners John Matear, Christine MacMillan, Barry Swanson, William Roberts, Max Feener, Linda Bond, Robert Street, William Francis and Dick Krommenhoek)

This is the largest number of candidates to stand for election as General. And because the President of the High Council, Commissioner William Francis, declared himself a candidate he was required to step aside from the presidency.

High Council Vice-President Commissioner Betty Matear, took over the leading of the session for a time, before she also stood down from her position as she will be involved in the election process as a spouse of a candidate.

In addition, the High Council Chaplain, two of the members of the questions committee and one of the tellers (vote counters) were also required to relinquish their positions because they were now candidates in the election of General.

This is the first time in the High Council’s history that both the President and Vice-President have needed to stand down from their positions. This unprecedented situation required a suspension of the Orders of Procedures to allow for new elections to take place.

Commissioner James Knaggs was elected President. It was then decided not to replace the two members of the Questions Committee, meaning it will be composed of five members for the remainder of this High Council. In addition it was agreed that the High Council member who received the next highest number of votes in the original tellers’ election would replace the member who is now a candidate for General.

Following the reconvening of the High Council after the evening meal, Colonel Birgitte Brekke was elected to the vice-presidency and Commissioner Vic Poke was elected Chaplain.

The ballot to obtain nominees for General was conducted in silence following morning devotions. At the conclusion of the announcement of the nominees by the High Council President the council adjourned for a number of hours to allow time for those (and where applicable) their spouses to consider their next steps.

During the morning devotional period Commissioner Hezekiel Anzeze said that ‘we must do today’s work – today. Do not push today’s work till tomorrow because God has other things for you tomorrow.’

After reading 1 John 5:14,15 the commissioner assured council members that God has been, and still is, at the centre of the election process.

This joyfully, meditative time included Salvation Army Song Book song 584 ‘I am praying blessed Saviour, to be more and more like thee…’, prayers in a number of languages and Salvation Army Song Book choruses; It’s no longer I that liveth, I want to live right that God may use me, Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in me and Teach me how to love thee.
Report by Lieut-Colonel Laurie Robertson
High Council Communications Officer

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