Territory gives Forward 2000 huge send-off
BY ROBERT DOCTER –
Each major event of the commissioning weekend sent signals to officers, soldiers and members to “start running and don’t quit” to “stay” to remember always, “Master, we are here for you” to “march into heaven with William Booth.”
Held in multiple venues at Crestmont, Long Beach and the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, the full schedule of activities involved commencement, the dedication of the new territorial headquarters, the presentation of the Gowans and Larssen musical Blood of the Lamb, the ordination and commissioning of the Forward 2000 session, and their appointments to the field as the West’s newest officers.
Capacity audiences participated in each of the weekend’s events.
The weekend appropriately centered on the graduating cadets who had completed two years of education and training at the Crestmont campus. Each prior session of newly commissioned lieutenants had prepared to leave the campus immediately following receipt of their appointments. This is not the case with the FORWARD 2000 session. Each of them remains in residence for three additional weeks at the newly developed Crestmont College. They will complete a series of lectures and experiences leading to a bachelor’s degree five years hence.
Special guest lecturers have participated in the three-week program. From William and Catherine Booth College, Dr. Ray Jeal, and Dr. Dwight Cuff; from Asbury Seminary, Dr. Jerry Mercer and Dr. Don Boyd; from Azusa Pacific University, Dr. Gordon Coulter, Dr. Pat Brandt, and Mr. Gary LeMaster; and from Occidental College, Dr. Denny VanderWeele.
The Tustin Ranch Corps Band under the leadership of Bandmaster Ed Freeman provided music for the dedication and Sunday events.