Friday, May 17, 2013

Some Salvation Army Stats Between 2001 - 2012 and the Way Forward

The Salvation Army is an active expression of God's mission in the world, and continues to serve many people, through active social and evangelical work. Below are a couple of graphs. Firstly, we see the number of officers in The Salvation Army in both 2001 and in 2012. Please note that the number of officers equal the number of active officers plus the number of retired officers.

The number of Salvation Army Officers, both active and retired as of both 2001 and 2012
Secondly, the below graph is the number of soldiers in The Salvation Army, both as of 2001 and in 2012.

The Number of Soldiers in The Salvation Army as of both 2001 and 2012

What can we make of these Salvation Army stats? Let's have a look. The number of soldiers in The Salvation Army has increased from 1,019,137 to 1,132,823 (up 113,686), an increase of 10.04%. Now, the number of active officers has gone from 17,417 in 2001 to 17,070 in 2012, a decrease of 1.99%.

Here is what I can gather from this data. There are slightly less active officers, and over 100,000 more soldiers. The logical conclusion? Salvation Army officers are probably needing to do more with less! Now, if The Salvation Army hierarchy, does not adapt to deal with more people 'on the forefront' of ministry, officers will have further increased demands on their roles. That's a challenge of leadership, creating a systemically, lean organisation (or rather movement), that continues to empower, equip and bless those who are at the grass-roots of ministry, serving Jesus.

We thank God for an increase over the last decade of soldiership numbers - people who identify as followers of Jesus within The Salvation Army and people willing to the best of their ability, live out the soldier's covenant. Though, we must continually pray and challenge people to step into officership. Why? I believe God still uses officership today, to allow people to fulfil an exciting role within the body of Christ; one of leading, pastoring, equipping, empowering and advocating.

There is more to say. There always is. The number of soldiers in proportion to countries? I would assume, some western parts of The Salvation Army are in decline and thus other parts of the world are growing rapidly. What is the attrition rate of officers? Are the number of cadets being commissioned higher or lower than previous years? The questions go on.

Keep serving the Lord. Make broken lives whole.

Also: What are the greatest challenges facing The Salvation Army?


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1 comment:

  1. I struggle with the soldiership stats, as you don't need to attend a salvation army corps to continue to be on the roll and I do not refer to the sick and injured. As you have said the stats would be much more helpful if they showed parts of the world, as they may look different for developed nations verses developing ones.


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