Salvation Army uniform signifies we are ‘saved to serve’

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A message from the Territorial Commander and Territorial President of Women’s Ministries:

Commissioner Kenneth G. Hodder: We wanted to take just a minute today to tell you a little bit about these uniforms. This is the uniform of The Salvation Army. And people often ask, what do the S’s mean? Well, in The Salvation Army, we know that they mean we are saved to serve. We are saved by the power of Jesus Christ for the purpose of serving the needs of others without discrimination. This is what The Salvation Army has always been about, and it’s certainly what it’s about in the midst of this COVID-19 emergency. You’re going to be seeing a lot of these uniforms in the days to come.

Commissioner Jolene K. Hodder: And during emergencies, you will always see vests like this. We have jackets like this, and emblems like this that will be on all sorts of vehicles. It just means that we are out in the streets to serve you, and we are here for you.

Kenneth G. Hodder: And it’s going to vary across the Western United States as to what The Salvation Army is doing. In Anchorage, the emphasis is on home deliveries to seniors. In Los Angeles, we’re working with the LA Unified School District to provide food to children so they get at least one square meal a day. In Portland, we’re making one of our facilities available to house medically fragile individuals. In fact, all of The Salvation Army’s facilities, wherever they are in the Western United States, are available to meet the needs of this emergency. So whatever the need is that you have in your community, call your local Salvation Army. Let them know that you’re available to help, or that you know of a need that The Salvation Army can meet.

I happened to look on the internet this morning, and I saw some words that were written by Martin Luther hundreds of years ago. In the middle of a medical emergency in Europe, these are the words that he wrote, and they really encapsulate what The Salvation Army is all about. He wrote this: “I shall ask God mercifully to protect us. Then I shall fumigate, help purify the air, administer medicine, and take it. I shall avoid places and persons where my presence is not needed, in order not to become contaminated, and thus per chance inflict and pollute others, and so cause their death as a result of my negligence. If God should wish to take me, he will surely find me and I have done what was expected of me. But if my neighbor needs me, I shall not avoid place or person, but will go freely.”

Jolene K. Hodder: Amen.

Kenneth G. Hodder: That’s precisely the way we feel in The Salvation Army. We are here because God has called us to serve others. Please don’t hesitate to let us know.  

Jolene K. Hodder: Shall we pray? Dear Heavenly Father, we ask that you would help us to be a calming presence in our communities. But, God, we also ask that you will give us courage to step out and to do what needs to be done in your name. Lord, we pray for all of our first responders. We pray for our seniors and those who are infected. We pray for those, Lord, who are in fear of their lives right now. Lord, use The Salvation Army. Use us. We are here for You. Use us. In Jesus’ name we pray, and we believe. Amen.

Kenneth G. Hodder: God bless you, and take care of yourselves.



  • If you’d like to make a monetary donation, please click here to make a gift.
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  • To learn more about how to support The Salvation Army’s relief efforts, please click here.

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