Wednesday, September 23, 2009

About: Salvation Army

Just a few excerpts taken from Wikipedia, to inform anyone interested as to what the Salvation Army is. I currently attend their Church services out in Howick. I already consider myself a regular member, but probably need to sign some proper documents to make it official.

The Salvation Army's stated objectives are:

The advancement of the Christian religion as promulgated in the religious doctrines—which are professed, believed and taught by the Army and, pursuant there to, the advancement of education, the relief of poverty, and other charitable objects beneficial to society or the community of mankind as a whole.


The Salvation Army was founded in London's East End in 1865 by one-time Methodist minister William Booth and his wife Catherine. Originally, Booth named the organization the East London Christian Mission, but in 1878 Booth reorganized it along military lines when his son Bramwell objected to being called a "volunteer" and stated that he was a "regular" or nothing. The name then became The Salvation Army.[3]


When William Booth became known as the General, Catherine was known as the "Mother of The Salvation Army". William preached to the poor, and Catherine spoke to the wealthy, gaining financial support for their work. She also acted as a religious minister, which was unusual at the time; the Foundation Deed of the Christian Mission, stated that women had the same rights to preach as men. William Booth described the organization's approach: "The three ‘S's’ best expressed the way in which the Army administered to the 'down and outs': first, soup; second, soap; and finally, salvation."[4]


The Salvation Army's main converts were at first alcoholics, drug addicts, prostitutes and other "undesirables" unwelcomed into polite Christian society, which helped prompt the Booths to start their own church.[5] The Booths did not include the use of sacraments (mainly baptism and Holy Communion) in the Army's form of worship, believing that many Christians had come to rely on the outward signs of spiritual grace rather than on grace itself.[6] Other beliefs are that its members should completely refrain from drinking alcohol (Holy Communion is not practiced), smoking, taking illegal drugs, and gambling.[7] Its soldiers wear a uniform tailored to the country they work in; the uniform can be white, grey, navy, fawn and are even styled like a sari in some areas. Any member of the public is welcome to attend their meetings.

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