The Salvation Army’s 20th High Council meeting at Sunbury Court near London, commenced on Monday 22 May 2023.
The sole purpose of the High Council is to elect the successor to General Brian Peddle, who retires at midnight on 2 August 2023.
The Chief of the Staff, Commissioner Lyndon Buckingham, commenced the High Council by recognising that the King of kings was there amongst the members. Following the singing of ‘Thine is the Kingdom, Lord’, the Chief of the Staff read Romans 12:1-3, encouraging High Council members to surrender themselves to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. These days of meeting as the High Council have the potential to be an act of worship that honours and blesses the heart of God. Commissioner Buckingham said, ‘We trust him and he will guide us.’
The Chief of the Staff called the High Council to order and moved to the required legal preliminaries. These included confirming that the High Council was convened in accordance with the 1980 Salvation Army Act, and taking a roll call to ensure that only those who were summoned were in the chamber.
The opening procedures were followed, leading to the election of three High Council officers who will serve for the duration of the council. Commissioner Kenneth Hodder (National Commander, United States of America) was elected as President and Commissioner Eva Kleman (Zonal Leader/Zonal Secretary for Women’s Ministries, Europe – International Headquarters) was elected as Vice-President. The final officer of the High Council to be elected on the opening day was the Chaplain, Commissioner Yusak Tampai (Territorial Commander, Indonesia Territory).
The remainder of the day was given to reviewing the Orders of Procedure which will guide the conducting of High Council business throughout its duration.
Prayers from those who attended the Welcome to the High Council and Farewell to the General and Commissioner Rosalie Peddle, or from those submitted online were a constant source of encouragement and enrichment to the members throughout the day. During breaks in proceedings, a regular stream of leaders read the prayers and they have been blessed. Commissioner Eva Kleman also shared messages of encouragement received from around the world. The High Council members are grateful for the prayers being offered for them in these sacred days.
Commissioner Tampai closed the day’s proceedings, sharing Psalm 23:5, and encouraged each member to claim the anointing oil of the Holy Spirit on their lives.
Please continue to cover the 2023 High Council in prayer, knowing that our faithful, all-knowing God hears the prayers of his people when we pray full of faith. Find resources and a prayer guide for personal, small group or corps (church) prayer at sar.my/prayforhighcouncil.
Report by Lieut-Colonel Jennifer Groves.
Photo: Left to right: Commissioner Eva Kleman, Commissioner Kenneth Hodder and Commissioner Yusak Tampai