There has been a concern for some time now across the Territory at the lack of people responding to the call for Officership, as well as the lack of ministerial experience, maturity and training afforded to those who have responded to God’s call on their lives. The result of which has left the majority of Candidates entering the College for Officer Training ill-equipped and unprepared to commence their two year training towards Officership.
At the beginning of January 2015, God birthed an opportunity for the Territory to re-think and re-structure our previous Candidate Helper Programme (CHP) to address some of the challenges already mentioned above. The CHP now provides missional & spiritual leadership development for recommended or deferred Candidates, before they enter CFOT. The CHP is now a year-long intensive Candidate development programme which operates in the following way:
Home Corps Concept:
Home Base – The South Rand Corps (Central Division) functions as the Candidate’s home base, accommodating the Candidates and offering a safe environment to reflect on their training and ministerial experiences. Although the Candidates will travel occasionally throughout the territory to increase their exposure to strong missional leadership models in a variety of ministries and contexts, the majority of their training and development will take place at the South Rand Corps.
Supervising Officer (SO) – is the Corps Officer of the South Rand Corps who will provide intensive pastoral and practical oversight of the programme and support of the Candidates – providing quarterly evaluation reports and working directly with the Territorial Candidates Secretary, who will report back to the Divisions/Divisional Commanders and the Territorial Candidates Council.
Coaches – one coach from the home corps will be assigned to each Candidate for the year, to offer accountability and support in their personal spiritual journeys. Information shared between the Candidate & coach will be held in strictest confidence.
Training Ethos – The ethos will be a graduated model of development with the following three components:
- SEE – The Candidates will spend the first couple of months (2-3 months) observing ministry at the home base. Regular opportunities will be provided to evaluate and feedback on the things they have learnt or experienced from observing ministry during this phase.
- TRY – During this phase of training (5-6 months), the candidates will minister themselves, leading bible study, youth group, Sunday school and other corps activities with a fairly robust oversight, support and regular feedback in place from the SO and the TCS.
- DO – The last phase of training (3 months) the Candidates will be expected to be fairly independent to take the lead and minister, analysing their own strengths and weaknesses in ministry, with limited oversight from the SO.
Orientation week – The CHP year commences with a week-long residential orientation programme that will be held at the CFOT. The emphasis will be the Candidates discovering their identity in Christ.
Each day will commence with Bible Study and prayer, and include topical speakers as well as various personal discovery assessments such as Spiritual Gifts, Learning Styles, DISC Profiling (Personality), Health & stress management, Public Speaking etc. Time will be allocated for personal prayer and ministry to take place. Practical information for the year will also be communicated during this week including budgeting and tithing – where the Candidates will be taught how to manage their monthly Candidate stipend with regard to their expenses over the year. The Candidates will also be introduced to their TEEC study courses for the year by representatives from the TEE College.
Corps Activities – Candidates will be fully engaged in all weekly Corps ministry opportunities which include Music Theory classes and practices (contemporary and brass). Youth and Children’s ministry. Men & Women’s Ministry. Junior Soldiers and Corps Cadets. Bible Study and Sunday meetings. Urban Praying (Street Ministry to sex workers).
Academic Studies – Candidates will be registered for two subjects towards a “Higher Certificate in Theology” – Church History and New Testament 1. These will be credited towards their Officer studies when they get to CFOT. They will be assigned a tutor for each subject who will meet with them at the ‘home base’ every week to assist with theological discussions and assignments.
Mission trips – The Candidates will attend and be involved in preparations for various divisional and territorial events and missions during the course of the year. This includes accompanying some of our THQ officers on ministry engagements (following the Paul & Timothy Biblical model).
Lectures – A variety of guest speakers will be scheduled to lecture during the course of the year, on various ministry topics, some being based on the SALT material (Salvation Army Leadership Training) e.g. Meeting Leadership, Mercy Seat Counselling, Salvationists and their Conduct, etc.)
Conditions of Acceptance for the CHP
The Candidate Helper Programme is now a prominent part of the Army’s Leadership development structure, created in order to provide training and preparation in the year prior to entry into the College for Officer Training. Candidates entering this programme are spiritual leaders, but do not receive the benefits and privileges of Salvation Army Officers. Therefore, the following contingencies will need to be applied and met by all recommended or deferred Candidates before being accepted on the Candidate Helper Programme.
- Applicants for the Candidates Working programme must be Salvation Army soldiers of good standing.
- Applicants need to have attended a Candidates Assessment Conference and been recommended for the next intake of cadets, or have been deferred to the Candidate Helper Programme by the Territorial Candidates Council.
- Applicants must be prepared to forego all other occupations and accept total involvement in this particular branch of Army service to which they will be appointed.
- Applicants will need to agree to move into the ‘Home Corps’ accommodation for the year and submit to the authority and direction of the Supervising Officer and Territorial Candidates Secretary.
- Applicants will be required to sign an undertaking prior to acceptance into the programme.
- Candidates accepted for this programme will normally receive this placement in accordance with the normal procedure governing the appointment of officers within the territory.
- Candidates receive a stipend according to the official territorial scale. The Candidate should tithe and endeavour to save some of the finances received for CFOT.
- Candidates wear soldiers trimmings, and when recommended will be permitted to wear the Candidates acceptance star.
- Candidates are required to wear official uniform when carrying out their duties and directed by the Supervising Officer.
- The service of a Candidate on the Candidate Helper Programme ends prior to entry into CFOT, and appropriate uniform will then be required according to the requirements of the CFOT.
- Should a Candidate’s service or conduct be deemed unsatisfactory, disciplinary action will be applied or carried out.
Candidate Helper Undertakings
The relationship between The Salvation Army and its Candidates is sacred.
This needs to be cherished and preserved as a means of achieving God-given common spiritual purpose. For a period of 1 year, prior to entry into College for Officer Training, eligible Candidates may be invited to join the Candidate Helper Programme. Those eligible Candidates will be required to sign the following undertaking:
- Having a sense of vocation to spiritual service in The Salvation Army, I give myself of my own free will to be a Working Candidate of The Salvation Army, to engage in its ministry for a term of 1 year. As a Working Candidate I acknowledge that, although I am not a commissioned and ordained officer of the Army, the fundamental nature of my relationship to the Army and of the Army to me is spiritual.
- I understand and agree that there is no contract of service of employment, nor any other legal relationship between the Army and me. Accordingly, The Salvation Army shall have no legal claims upon me nor I upon the Army.
- Recognizing that I am in training and being mentored by my Supervising Officer and Territorial Candidates Secretary, I will accept the direction of my leaders, and will faithfully fulfill all the requirements of my appointment.
- I declare my belief in the truths of the doctrines of The Salvation Army and under supervision; I will endeavour to teach them faithfully and will seek to make my life a reflection of those truths.
- I will trust my leaders in the Army to provide me with opportunities for personal development in order to enhance my service and readiness to enter the College for Officer Training. I will use responsibly and wisely all such opportunities, accepting that my leaders have a duty to encourage me, enlarging my vision of all I can become in Christ.
- I will expect my Supervising Officer to evaluate periodically my progress and personal effectiveness in ministry. I acknowledge that I am accountable to them under God for carrying out my duties effectively. I will accept and act upon formal recommendations for my improvement, knowing that persistent ineffectiveness could lead to the termination of my service.
- I undertake to complete the prescribed studies for Candidates and submit them to the Candidates Secretary according the due dates set.
- I will not engage in secular employment, paid or unpaid, accepting that I must be totally involved in the sphere of Army service to which I am appointed.
- I will respond wholeheartedly to efforts by my leaders to encourage me in the use and development of my creative abilities. I agree to place any such abilities at the disposal of the Army for the furtherance of its mission.
- I will not seek or encourage any presentation, gift or testimonial to myself, or use my position as a Candidate for personal gain.
- I undertake to account for all monies and other assets entrusted to me and to keep and make available for inspection and audit purposes all records, accepting my responsibilities as a Christian steward of the resources placed under my control.
- I will conform to the Army’s requirements in my Territory of service regarding the wearing of uniform.
- I will seek to be a worthy Candidate of the Army and will avoid in word or action anything likely to injure the body of Christ or that part of it which is The Salvation Army.
- I recognize that I may not officiate at Salvation Army ceremonies, including marriage ceremonies, which are subject to local legal requirements and territorial policy.
- I accept that being part of the Candidate Helper Programme does not guarantee that I will be accepted in the next Session of Training at the College for Officer Training.
- I accept that I will not be eligible for medical benefits from The Salvation Army, but these will be considered on a compassionate basis.