General of The Salvation Army

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General of The Salvation Army
André Cox

since 3 August 2013
Style General
Residence London, United Kingdom
Appointer High Council
Elected by the High Council of The Salvation Army by secret ballot
Term length Unlimited
But must be under 70 years old
Inaugural holder William Booth

General is the title of the international leader of The Salvation Army, a Christian denomination with extensive charitable social services that gives quasi-military rank to its ministers (who are therefore known as officers). André Cox is currently the General of The Salvation Army; Chief of the Staff of The Salvation Army William A. Roberts, however, has been serving as Acting General since 5 January 2015 as Cox recovers from surgery. [1]

History and procedures for election[edit]

1st General, William Booth

Usage of the term General began with the Founder of The Salvation Army, William Booth. His wife, Catherine Booth, became known as the "Mother" of The Salvation Army. General Booth passed on the command to his eldest son, Bramwell Booth, but all Generals after Bramwell Booth have been elected.

The office of General is not restricted by gender. Evangeline Booth, William's daughter, was elected fourth General of the Army, and Eva Burrows was elected the thirteenth General. On January 31, 2011 Commissioner Linda Bond, a Canadian national, was named General-Elect of The Salvation Army and assumed office on April 2, 2011 following the retirement of General Shaw Clifton.

The Officer of The Salvation Army who is elected General is the worldwide spiritual leader of The Salvation Army. Since The Salvation Army maintains a quasi-military structure, all appointments are made, and all regulations issued, under the General's authority. Since the results of the 1929 High Council, and with the passage of The Salvation Army Act in the British Parliament in 1931, a General must "retire" at age 70. As of March 20, 2015, there are 5 retired Generals still living.

The General is elected by the High Council when his or her predecessor is removed by the High Council, retires or dies (known within the Salvation Army as being promoted to Glory) while still in office. The High Council is made up of the Chief of the Staff, all active commissioners, except the spouse of the General, and all territorial commanders.

The 2006 High Council was held in Sunbury near London, England, from January 20 to January 28, 2006. The High Council elected Shaw Clifton who took office of the General after General Larsson retired on April 2, 2006.

On January 31, 2011, after 10 days of meetings which began on January 21, 2011, the 17th High Council elected Linda Bond as the 19th General of The Salvation Army. General Linda Bond is the third woman to hold the post and the fourth Canadian. This election was handled by the largest High Council in history and was especially significant due to the number of women delegates (57) outnumbering the number of men delegates (52).[2]

On 3 August 2013 the then Commissioner Andre Cox was elected by the High Council of 2013 as the 20th General of The Salvation Army. [3]

Generals of The Salvation Army[edit]

General Took office Left office Born Died
1st United Kingdom William Booth 1865 1912 10 April 1829 20 August 1912
2nd United Kingdom Bramwell Booth, CH 1912 1929 8 March 1856 16 June 1929
3rd United Kingdom Edward Higgins 1929 1934 26 November 1864 14 December 1947
4th United Kingdom Evangeline Booth, OF 1934 1939 25 December 1865 17 July 1950
5th Australia George Carpenter 1939 1946 20 June 1872 9 April 1948
6th United Kingdom Albert Orsborn 1946 1954 4 September 1886 4 February 1967
7th United Kingdom Wilfred Kitching, CBE 1954 1963 22 August 1893 15 December 1977
8th United Kingdom Frederick Coutts, CBE 1963 1969 21 September 1899 6 February 1986
9th Sweden Erik Wickberg 1969 1974 6 July 1904 26 April 1996
10th Canada Clarence Wiseman, OC 1974 1977 19 June 1907 4 May 1985
11th Canada Arnold Brown, OC 1977 1981 13 December 1913 26 June 2006
12th Finland Jarl Wahlström 1981 1986 9 July 1918 3 December 1999
13th Australia Eva Burrows, AC 1986 1993 15 September 1929 20 March 2015
14th Canada Bramwell Tillsley July 1993 May 1994 18 August 1931
15th United States (Dr.) Paul Rader August 1994 July 1999 14 March 1934
16th United Kingdom John Gowans July 1999 September 2002 13 November 1934 8 December 2012
17th Sweden John Larsson September 2002 April 2006 2 April 1938
18th United Kingdom Shaw Clifton April 2006 April 2011 21 September 1945
19th Canada Linda Bond 2 April 2011 13 June 2013 22 June 1946
Zimbabwe Andre Cox Acting 13 June 2013 3 August 2013 12 July 1954
20th Zimbabwe Andre Cox 3 August 2013 Incumbent 12 July 1954

External links[edit]