Every Salvationist At Some Stage Needs To Consider Officership
Released 18 July 2010
COMMITMENT to officership was the specific focus of Commissioner Sue
Swanson's (World Secretary for Women's Ministries) lively and pertinent
barrier-piercing message on the Friday morning of the World Youth Convention.
With great delight she announced that, ‘today I get to talk to you
about officership – an obvious subject for committed Salvationists yet
one that is often ignored by them for as long as possible’.
And following her straightforward, no holds barred challenge many delegates
headed for the candidates tent seeking more information about officership.
Throughout her frank explanation regarding the need for every Salvationist
to seriously ask God if officership is for them,Commissioner Swanson used a
pile of newly washed and folded (but inappropriately dumped) towels. The towels
were obvious to everyone but nothing was being done to either use them or put
them in their correct place.
The commissioner said that is what happens with God’s call to
officership. ‘It is obvious that every committed Salvationist will need
at some point to work through whether they have been called by God to
officership or not. But even though it is obvious it is ignored.’
Commissioner Swanson read from Salvation Army Orders and Regulations that,
‘Officers are soldiers who have quit secular employment in response to a
spiritual call so they can concentrate all their time to the service of God and
She said that there are some general indicators when it comes to working out
if officership ‘is for you or not. If it is for you the call will become
increasingly obvious and strong. God’s Word will direct you to it,
circumstances will lead you to it, applicable spiritual gifts will start to
come alive and others will say to you that they can see you as an
And Commissioner Swanson also had some advice for those not yet called to be
officers. She said that, ‘Every soldier is a candidates’ secretary.
If you recognise that another Salvationist is being called to officership
it’s your responsibility to assist them to take the step.’
Following the commissioner’s confronting, yet at times humorous,
message Australia Eastern candidates’ secretaries, Captains Craig and
Donna Todd, who coordinate the candidates tent at the convention, invited
everyone to drop in to see them.
Report by Major Laurie