Seilers assume responsibility for So. California Division

Listen to this article

by Paul Seiler, Major – 

Editor’s note: Major Paul Seiler addressed the Southern Califonia Divison during the recent Welcome of Cadets held September 11, 2004 at Tustin Ranch Corps. His remarks are below.

“Make the field a priority.” A territorial phrase we are all familiar with.
Let me share what that means as the Seilers accept the responsibilities of the coaching, serving, guiding, leadership opportunities in the Southern California Division.

From Matthew 10 in The Message Bible translation, listen to the words of Jesus as he sends out the 12 “harvest hands” into the fields.

“Go to the lost, confused people right here in the neighborhood. Tell them that the kingdom is here. Bring health to the sick. Raise the dead. Touch the untouchables. Kick out the demons…You don’t need a lot of equipment. YOU are the equipment…”

The millions of people in the communities that make up the entire Western Territory, and the 12 million plus in the Southern California Division are the neighborhoods that need the godly and steadfast impact of Christian men and women:

• Men and women who can model the humility and love of Christ for those who are hurting.
• Men and women who can explain salvation by the cross and a holy life lived by faith.
• Men and women who do not lose hope because of the events of the day but who see the opportunities to contrast the kingdom of God with the chaos of godlessness.
I pray that with all the resources at our disposal we never forget that it is God working through us in all our interactions that will make the difference.

We’ve had a chance to visit many of the corps and programs this summer. There are wonderful people and program resources in this division and there is an ability to think globally and act locally. This is possibly the only division that is a cross-section of the world and defined by a continual stretch of concrete freeways and population.

But even more—there are young people with courage and energy. There are older people with wisdom and conviction. There are quality professionals with specialized skills who change lives. There are officers who weep for their congregations. There are people who invest their time and knowledge of their communities to advise us. And there are bottom-line challenges that give us the opportunity to think differently about our methods.

This summer I’ve been reading, among other things, Emma Booth-Tucker’s book, The Cross, our Comfort—fascinating glimpses of the early Army. I think of the heritage of retired officers and faithful soldiers. I believe that they would want their legacy to be propelling the division forward. We don’t want anyone accusing The Salvation Army in Southern California of harboring “West Nile virus,” of being “standing or stagnant water” in the community. We want to be bringing the living water to people in the manner that they will find attractive and relevant.

I commit to you that as fellow Christians on the journey, divisional headquarters is a partner in making the kingdom real in the neighborhood.

Colin Powell writes, “The day your soldiers stop bringing you their problems is the day you have stopped leading them. They have either lost confidence you can help them or conclude that you do not care. Either case is a failure of leadership.”

For the Army, the day a headquarters and corps/program ministries stop bringing their problems to a common table is the day we’re no longer a movement, but fragmented ministries. Headquarters must think and act as a resource center for the work being done, and we all must view the use of our resources as a stewardship imperative.

We intend to engage as many as possible in active dialogue; to demonstrate the value of individuals and respect one another’s dignity; to make hard decisions when needed; and to work, weep and rejoice together in years ahead.

May the Lord give us strength and wisdom and the encouragement of being on this journey as brothers and sisters in Christ.

Community Care Ministries–a new source of volunteers

Community Care Ministries–a new source of volunteers

by Marilyn K

It’s about community

It’s about community

by Raymond L

You May Also Like