New members on Doctrine Council

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The Chief of the Staff, on behalf of the General, has advised Lt Colonel Prathipaty Devavaram from India and Captain Lester Ferguson from the Caribbean that they are appointed new members on The Salvation Army International Doctrine Council.

Their membership is for a possible five-year term from July 2002 to July 2007. This is in keeping with a recent decision by the General that there will be a gradual turnover of council membership in the next four years, with new members normally serving five years.

The current doctrine council includes members who have served since July 1992. Continuity of membership during this period was considered necessary because of a series of related publications having to do with exposition of Salvation Army doctrine. A new Salvationist handbook of doctrine, Salvation Story, was published in 1998. This was followed in 1999 with the publication of Salvation Story Study Guide, an educational and theological resource for those who teach Army doctrine at both basic and advanced levels.

The publication series will conclude with a book to be published in 2002 entitled Servants Together, with the subtitle, The Ministry of the Whole People of God. This has to do with Salvationist perspectives on spiritual leadership, as a complement to chapter ten of Salvation Story, ‘People of God,’ concerning the doctrine of the Church. This book is intended to meet a need recognized by Salvation Army leaders at a conference in Hong Kong in 1995 when they recommended, “That the roles of officers and soldiers be defined and a theology of the ‘priesthood of all believers’ developed to encourage greater involvement in ministry.”

With the above projects completed, the internationalism of the council will be strengthened for its ongoing mandate. The General has agreed that the ongoing work of the council will focus on five areas in particular:

  • As in the past, it will comment, as required, on theological issues received from leaders at International Headquarters and territories or commands.
  • Upon request, it will interface with other councils or commissions in order to provide a theological perspective to their deliberations.
  • It will be involved with designated committees chosen to work with the Secretary for International External Relations in ecumenical theological dialogue.
  • It will prepare papers for theological critique and discussion through being offered to Salvation Army publications such as The Officer and Word and Deed.
  • It will implement recommendations arising from the International Theology and Ethics Symposium of May 2001.

The following are members of the council as of 01 July 2002: Colonel Earl Robinson (chair – IHQ), Colonel Benita Robinson (secretary – IHQ), Lt Colonel Prathipaty Devavaram (India), Captain Lester Ferguson (Caribbean), Dr Roger Green (USA), Colonel Gudrun Lydholm (Finland) and Major Christine Parkin (United Kingdom).

–IHQ International News Release

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