Today is the day when my organisation reveals its plans for the next few year.
The Salvation Army has a process of ministers being moved regularly, as part of their ongoing work. This can be a good thing. This can be a bad thing. My thoughts are not about the rights or wrongs about the moving people around, my questions is around the process
I have seen it operate and been a part of it and I find it very curious.
At a basic level the Salvation Army as a hierarchical organisation, decides on high what will happen, and that is revealed at local level. my understanding of the process is…
– church council are asked about the possability of minsters moving. (october/november)
– there is a meeting of the regional managers (Divisional Commanders) where they decide who goes where (november)
– the people moving are informed they will be moving, but not where they are moving to or who will replace them. Those ministers are told not to discuss the move until the march letter.
– the people moving get a written confirmation of where they are going to. (march 11th)
– the list of moves is released to the public (march 12th).
– move happen july/august
The thing I find bizarre is the moves being decided in Novemeber, the people involved told about moving anytime up until and including on the morning of the letters. But there being s requirement of secrecy from minster to church, and from bosses to minister (not being told where your new job is). This process of letters and secrecy really something strange about an organisation who’s aim is to build community.
Community is build on openness and shared story, and a reality which is experienced together, (or something like that). Yet the people responsable for this community of faith insist that the community leaders are have a period of secrecy, from the community. Even worse the leaders have a sense of unease and uncomfortableness, as the leaders know something is going to happen, yet cannot discuss it. The church leadership are aware the minister might be moving from October, but cannot find out until the next march what’s happening. Without knowing where you are going it seems hard to deal with the process, and relax into the decision.
This comes to mind as today hundreds of people have got letters changing their lives, some for the better some for the worse. the good thing is the uncertainity is gone. the bad thing is the reality is revealed.
I hope it went well for you.