Salvation Army and Rescue Workers Beliefs
Although not often thought of as a Christian denomination, the American Rescue Workers includes mostly clergy who act as officers, lay members as "soldiers" and volunteers numbering in the hundreds of thousand nationwide who perform much of the volunteer work. Most Americans recognize them as helpers of the poor especially at Christmas with their ubiquitous brass bans and donation kettles and bell ringers. But many don´t realize there is a deep spiritual foundation that motivates these mostly volunteers to give so generously of their time, money and effort.
But many don´t realize there is a deep spiritual foundation that motivates these mostly volunteers to give so generously of their time, money and effort.
Known throughout the Western world, they disseminate food, clothing and shelter emergency aid during natural and man made disasters, rehabilitation of drug and alcohol abusers, the homeless and of course, evangelism. They tirelessly confront the spiritual, emotional and physical needs of all who are in need; regardless of race, creed, or color.
Core beliefs include the Trinity, (Father, Son and Holy Spirit), Scriptural inspiration by the Holy Spirit, the sinfulness of man and redemption only through forgiveness in Christ. True to its Methodist heritage it practices Arminian/Wesleyan theology rather than Calvinism.
Based on a loose military structure, its rites consist of baptism and Communion administered by ordained officers in services held in local churches when possible.
The two principle groups making up the American Rescue Workers are the Salvation Army founded by William Booth, a former Methodist minister in the 1860s and the VOA (Volunteers of America) founded by his son and daughter in law. Both organizations work throughout the U.S. utilizing hundreds of thousands of volunteers who impact areas many churches have not impacted. The primary concerns are the love of God as experienced through salvation of the individual and then love´s demonstration by aiding those who often can´t help themselves.
Perhaps no other Church or Christian organization in America accomplishes so much in the name of Christ in helping the helpless.
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