The Power of Perspective

Flying back from Canberra late yesterday afternoon, I looked out the window and was caught again by the power of the perspective that 30,000 feet brings to the landscape below.  From the winding roads connecting distant locations invisible to the driver in a car, yet with the certain destiny ahead, to the snow-capped peaks leading into valley rivers that find their way to the coast and its welcoming tide flows – there was in view a grand design.

Over the course of these last week’s there has been much happening on the ground, especially as related to the creation of the Australia territory. There has been a focus upon finalising the design of national departments and their connection to new divisional team approaches supporting local mission delivery.  This has been a thorough work, testing the approaches proposed in consultation with multiple levels across the movement. The second cohort of Officers seconded to four week internships with the National Transition Team has also completed their work supporting the projects associated with the move to a single national territory.

At the same time, dynamic mission advances continue to happen across the nation.  The ‘Come Alive’ initiative has launched inviting Salvos to consider leadership opportunities within The Salvation Army including a fresh consideration of Officership.  Recent weeks have also seen candidates for Officership and Aux. Lieutenancy accepted, and other applications being received.  During this past weekend we shared in a great celebration of faith and commitment in Canberra with the commissioning of Roz Edwards as a Salvation Army officer appointed as Corps Officer at Tuggeranong corps.

In response to the International Accountability Movement, the creation of the new Australia Territory, and the IHQ approved governance model, the new Salvation Army Australia Territory Board met for the first time this past week.  It was a powerful day as the Board shared Scripture together and prayed together not only as the Board commenced its day, but as prompted throughout the day and again as we concluded the agenda.   The Board reviewed the history, purpose and culture of The Salvation Army and its impact upon Australia.  Other items included an overview of current operations, along with the mission, vision, values and strategy.  Focus upon the structures, business and operational supports gave Board Members a deeper understanding of how The Salvation Army delivers its mission.  Upcoming Board meetings will focus on our diverse expressions of mission and mission enterprises.

Throughout this first day of meeting together, Board Members sensed the presence of God guiding the Board and its deliberations.  It was clear that every member of the Board understood the immense privilege and responsibility to serve the mission and people of The Salvation Army through their Board involvement.  We are grateful for the time, effort and energy committed by these individuals to the work of the Board and their involvement in various committees of the Board.

The members of the board are Mr Adrian Appo OAM, Colonel Mark Campbell, Greg Couttas (who offered his apologies for this meeting), Mr. Richard Grellman AM (Lead independent member), Desley Hargreaves PSM, Lieutenant Lydia Hong, Captain Richard Parker, Colonel Geanette Seymour (Alternate Chair), Commissioner Floyd Tidd (Chair), Commissioner Tracey Tidd, and a final member of the Board awaiting confirmation and appointment.  The September issue of the Other’s magazine will provide more information on the board and profiles of the members.

Looking back over the last number of weeks and months, and zooming in for the view on this last week, it is clearly evident to me that the ‘grand design’ is a ‘divine design’.  In what may not be seen from any single vantage point, on any single day, in the journey to a Salvation Army positioned for a new work of God in and through it, I remain convinced again that He who began this good work, is continuing to carry it onto completion.

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