Guiding Coalition Has Territorial Vision
by Major Terry Camsey –
Nobody said it was going to be easy, and it was with a fair amount of trepidation that the Territorial Guiding Coalition gathered to tackle the task of developing the draft of a territorial vision. We arranged through Lt. Colonel Mervyn Morelock (R) for prayer during the project, did our homework, prayed individually for months.
The parameters were pretty clear…corps/unit visions were to be considered and collated at divisional/command level to be reflected in visions they produced. The Coalition was to take those division/command visions and produce a draft territorial vision statement reflecting corps, units, divisions and commands vision statements.
But the territorial vision had also to take into account: our mission statement; the survey our consultant, J. David Schmidt, had conducted among corps; our key values as outlined by Commissioner David Edwards in The Salvation Army Who We Are!; How The Territory Can Help You Implement Your Vision blue worksheets from the corps visioning kits; characteristics of healthy churches; examination of what has worked for us in the past; and what God’s Word has to say about the roles of the church. Add to this, input received from futurists (both in person and through sifting through many books) covering both missional church distinctives and distinctives of the postmodern generations and you’ll have an idea of the magnitude of the task. How did we handle it?
Several groups each covered one aspect of the input and distilled it to a memorable sentence or phrase that captured the essence of that input. Those “consensus phrases” were discussed by all, revised as necessary and agreed.
Next, each member of the Coalition wrote a memorable (30-35 words or so) vision statement that took those “consensus phrases” and distilled to capture the big picture. All of those visions were posted and each member read what he/she had written. The group then determined which best represented what the territorial vision should be. That vision was used as a template for discussion until this “brief version” of the draft vision statement was shaped to the satisfaction of all.
The Coalition split again into groups, each considering a key phrase from the agreed vision statement and clarifying what was meant. Findings were shared, discussed and negotiated until everyone was happy with the content, allowing us to rewrite the fuller version of the vision.
Every bit of data submitted was considered and is reflected in the draft vision submitted to territorial administration.