I am a Salvation Army Song Book
by Raymond Friday –
I was printed in 1977, but my amazing story does not begin until 1979, when the Fridays, who were local officers at the Monterey, California corps, bought me. This was during Redwood Glen Family Camp over a holiday weekend. Regine, the wife, even wrote in my cover: “9/2/79 Camp Redwood Glen Labor Day Weekend Family Camp—Regine, Raymond, Charles and Paul.”
My duties were simple—I went with the family twice a week to church to hear them sing songs of praise. Mine was a content life and remained so until one day in 1985 when my owner Raymond took me to The Salvation Army thrift store in Seaside, California, and dropped me off. I did not have any luck getting a new owner there, so I was shipped to the Army thrift store in San Jose, California.
Eventually a Salvation Army officer, by the name of “Kitty,” bought me, and we moved to the El Cajon Corps in San Diego. This new life made me very happy; Kitty took me to church with her every time she would go, and I was feeling useful again.
My life took another unexpected turn in the year 2000. As usual I went to the corps with Kitty—there, in the same adult Bible class, was my original owner. During this class my old owner introduced himself and explained that he had come back to the Army to re-establish himself with God. At the end of the class Kitty told Raymond that she might have something for him—that after some checking she would let him know the following week.
For years Kitty had seen the writing inside my cover—the names of my previous owners in The Salvation Army Song Book. She figured that the Raymond Friday in her class was indeed my original owner.
I am sure you have guessed by now that Raymond was my first owner. I have come full circle—I am back with my original owner after 15 years, and I could not be any happier than I am now, singing and praising the Lord at the San Diego Kroc Center Corps with A/Captains Jerry and Vicky Esqueda, our corps officers.
A/Captains Esqueda were corps officers at the time of this story; currently, the University Avenue Corps (Kroc Center) is led by Captains Neil and Rubina Navarro.