Western leadership has announced the opening of a territorial Battle School dedicated to “equipping, motivating, challenging and inspiring youth in a modern day Salvation Army setting that is mission-focused and holistic in its approach.”

The school, to be located on the grounds of the Hawaiian and Pacific Islands divisional headquarters on Oahu, is slated to open in September 2006.

“Strategically, we can no longer sit back and merely hope that our young adults will become the next generation of effective soldiers and officers who will lead our territory,” stated Territorial Youth Secretary Captain Kyle Smith. “To accomplish it, we must start our territory’s own mission-driven battle school where we train our own young adults to be modern day spiritual warriors within the Western Territory Salvation Army context and culture.

“A program of this magnitude would not only effectively train young adults from this emerging generation to become ‘Blood and Fire’ soldiers of The Salvation Army, but would provide a symbolic presence defining our territory as it leads the way in training up a generation of lifelong, committed soldiers devoted to being successful leaders in a post-modern and diverse territory,” he said.

The program would require a one-year commitment of its students, with nine months on-site in Hawaii and two months on an internship at a Salvation Army corps or facility.

Students will be young adults from the Western Territory, but may also include Salvationists from other North American territories, as well as non-Salvationist young adults who work at our summer camps or have a close connection with The Salvation Army.

Six essential program components have been identified:

1. Discipleship and Mentoring will be integrated into the daily program.

2. Experiential Component will include:
Street ministry in Honolulu (Waikiki – prostitutes; Aa’la Park – homeless);
corps ministry; Salvation Army institutional social service centers; beach ministry with the homeless; mission exposure with immigrant Micronesian population; and on site exposure to integrated missions.

3. Academic Component:
Learning group model – Reading selected books followed by group discuss on contents and its application in a Salvationist context.

Instruction groups – local Salvationists and non-Salvationists with expertise in specific areas will provide teaching, e.g. Commissioner Noland, officers, Child Evangelism Fellowship, Youth With A Mission.

4. Salvationist Seminar Series:
Four one-week seminars featuring top international Salvationist teachers and speakers are planned annually.

5. Christian Conferences:
Students will attend two nationally renowned conferences held in Hawaii: Hawaiian Island Ministries conference and Doing Church as a Team.

6. Internships – Summer Assignment:
School delegates will spend the summer at a Salvation Army location anywhere between El Paso, Anchorage, Montana, San Diego and Guam.

Each student will be expected to pay an annual fee of between $2,000-$4,000, depending on the location of their summer assignment.

This center will be started with the understanding that although reviewed annually, both the territory and Hawaiian Division will commit to supporting the program for at least the next five years, allowing adequate time for its development. Should the program be successful and economically viable, it is hoped similar ministry development centers could be reproduced in other areas of our territory in the future.

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