General André Cox, waving the Boundless 2015 flag

Coxes encourage Salvationists at Canada Congress

General André Cox and Commissioner Silvia Cox

General André Cox and Commissioner Silvia Cox were warmly received at the Welcome Meeting of Territorial Congress 2014 (Photo: Timothy Cheng)

By Pamela Richardson – 

Escorted to the platform by two of Canada’s world-famous Mounties—officers of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police—General André Cox and Commissioner Silvia Cox, world president of women’s ministries, joined with thousands of Salvationists at the Canada and Bermuda Territorial Congress 2014 in Mississauga, Ontario.

The world leaders had arrived a few days ahead of the congress, giving them the opportunity to tour frontline Army ministries, including an English-as-a-second-language program at Toronto Harbor Light and Gateway Linens, a social enterprise program that helps those experiencing homelessness. They also participated in a staff reception and devotional meeting at territorial headquarters.

Congress events began with an officer family event on Thursday and Officers Councils on Friday morning. In the evening the Hershey Centre was filled with delegates who gathered for the welcome meeting, “One Army,” Representatives of Canada’s First Nations, cloaked in traditional garments, spoke words of welcome and presented gifts to the General and Territorial Commander Commissioner Brian Peddle.

At a youth-focused concert by contemporary Christian musician Tim Neufeld, Cox said, “As I look around the room, ‘I see the potential not only to change Canada, but to change the world.”

The next day, delegates participated in a prayer breakfast and workshops on topics that included Salvation Army doctrine, evangelism, women in leadership and a special “Tell the General” workshop for young people, where the General answered questions about life, faith and The Salvation Army. The international leaders also showed their fun side when visiting the kids program, joining in a time of song and dance.

On Saturday afternoon, 17 cadets of the Disciples of the Cross Session and one auxiliary-captain were ordained and commissioned by the territorial commander. “They have entered into a covenant relationship with God and that first step of their journey has begun,” Peddle told the congregation.

Representatives of Canada

Representatives of Canada’s First Nations, cloaked in traditional garments, spoke words of welcome and presented the General and Commissioner Brian Peddle with gifts (Photo: Steve Nelson)

Later that day, thousands joined the international leaders for an evening of praise and worship, under the theme “Celebrating One Mission,” which showcased the exciting things that are happening on the frontlines of ministry across the territory. North York Temple Band presented “’Abundance,” accompanied by London Citadel Timbrels.

During Sunday morning’s holiness meeting, “One Message,” the General challenged Salvationists to take what they had seen and heard throughout the congress weekend and to use it for God’s glory. “What’s going to change in your life because you came here?” he asked. “How are you going to respond?”

Many people accepted his invitation to kneel at the mercy seat in rededication of their lives to God’s service.

In the afternoon, Salvationists gathered for a sending out service, the final meeting of the congress. In her Bible message, Cox spoke about the importance of bearing witness to God’s goodness. “We have to say what the Lord has done,” she exclaimed.

Attention then turned to Boundless–The Whole World Redeeming, The Salvation Army’s International Congress, which will take place in London in July 2015. As the congregation enthusiastically sang “O Boundless Salvation,” the General carried a Boundless 2015 flag and led a “Hallelujah Wind-up,” with a crowd of International Congress delegates following behind him, each waving a smaller version of the flag.

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