New Zealander Commissioner Lyndon Buckingham has been elected as the 22nd General of the international Salvation Army, while Lyndon’s wife Bronwyn will serve alongside him as World President of Women’s Ministries.
They will take up their new leadership roles at The Salvation Army’s International Headquarters in London from August 2023 with the retirement of General Brian Peddle and Commissioner Rosalie Peddle.
The election follows several days of prayer and deliberations by The Salvation Army’s 2023 High Council who met at Sunbury Court, near London in the United Kingdom. Members of the High Council represented Salvation Army territories from around the world.
Chief Secretary of the New Zealand, Fiji, Tonga and Samoa Territory, Colonel Gerry Walker, said that the Buckinghams are the first New Zealanders to fill the two highest leadership positions in the worldwide Salvation Army.
“On behalf of the Territory, we offer our sincere and heartfelt congratulations, continued prayer and support, as they lead the mission of The Salvation Army in more than 130 countries.”
Speaking at the announcement on 27 May (UK time) the new General elect said: “We love the mission of The Salvation Army. We believe passionately that Jesus is the hope of the world.
“We’re so grateful and humbled to have an opportunity to serve in this way and we have already made a promise to the members of the High Council that we will serve wholeheartedly the mission of The Salvation Army and our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ,” said Commissioner Lyndon Buckingham.
“We will do so with humility and grace and with courage and we know that we are supported and surrounded by great leaders, soldiers and adherents and supporters all around the world and together, together we will carry the mission of The Salvation Army forward.
“Thank you for your support. Thank you for your prayers over this place and these proceedings. All glory to God and let’s get ready for the next chapter. God bless you.”
Commissioners Lyndon and Bronwyn Buckingham have been serving in senior leadership roles at International Salvation Army Headquarters in London since 3 August 2018, when Lyndon became Chief of the Staff and Bronwyn World Secretary for Spiritual Life Development.
The Buckingham’s were commissioned in New Zealand in January 1990, serving initially at Queenstown. Two years later they were appointed to training college work, where they served until July 1994, when their first experience of international service came to them – appointed as corps (church) officers to the Windsor Corps in the Canada and Bermuda Territory.
They returned to New Zealand, serving from July 1998 at Wellington City Corps until their appointment to head up the Youth and Candidates department at Territorial HQ in Wellington.
In 2007, Majors Buckingham were appointed to lead the Southern Division of the New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga Territory, as Divisional Commander/Divisional Director of Women's Ministries, until their appointment back to Territorial HQ in February 2010 – Lt.-Colonels Buckingham being appointed respectively as Secretary for Programme and Assistant Secretary for Programme.
The leadership needs of The Salvation Army world brought Lt.-Colonels Buckingham back into the orbit of international service when, in February 2013, they were appointed to the Singapore, Malaysia and Myanmar Territory, as Chief Secretary and Territorial Secretary for Women’s Ministries, moving into the leadership of the territory, as Territorial Commander/Territorial President of Women's Ministries, in June of the same year.
The dawning of 2018 saw the Buckinghams, with promotion to the rank of commissioner, assuming leadership of the United Kingdom Territory with the Republic of Ireland, as Territorial Commander and Territorial Leader of Leader Development.
Lyndon was born in Dannevirke, while his parents were stationed in Woodville, and Bronwyn is from Whangārei.
Watch a video of the announcement of the 22nd General of The Salvation Army and view the High Council timeline: https://salvationarmy.org/ihq/highcouncil2023
More information about The Salvation Army’s 2023 High Council: https://salvationarmy.org/ihq/guide-to-a-high-council
The Salvation Army Territorial Media Officer, 021 945 337, email: firstname.lastname@example.org (The Media Officer responds to enquiries from media outlets and journalists. If you would like to donate, are in need of help, or have some other non-media-related enquiry, please call 0800 53 00 00.)