People of the Army


The Salvation Army is both a church and a social service organization. Church membership consists of adherents (regularly attending non-members), soldiers (members), and officers (ministers/pastors). In addition to leading church services, officers are responsible for management of The Salvation Army’s social service programs and daily business operations. Employees assist officers with professional tasks such as social service case management, accounting, development, information technology, and office management.

Soldiers who have served for more than six months may apply to the School for Officers’ Training and, if accepted, enroll as cadets.

Upon graduation from the school, cadets become fully ordained ministers, commissioned officers, and are appointed to a place of service.

What should I do if I am interested in Christian service as a Salvation Army Officer?

Call or write to:

Candidates’ Department
The Salvation Army Territorial Headquarters
1424 Northeast Expressway
Atlanta, GA 30329
Phone: 404-728-1300 ext. 494 FAX: 404-728-6751

Email Or, go to the Southern Territory’s Candidate’s Web Page.

»Why we use military structure and uniforms

The General

The General, based at International Headquarters in London, is the international leader of The Salvation Army and travels widely wherever the Army is active. He or she is elected by the High Council (a group of senior Salvation Army officers) for a term of five years or until the 68th birthday is reached, when he or she must retire. The Advisory Council to the General assists The General in policy making.

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The Salvation Army’s work throughout the United States is greatly enhanced by volunteers.

From ringing the bell at Salvation Army kettles during the Christmas season to working with young people in character-building activities, Salvation Army volunteers run the gamut of service in every Army program. There are approximately 3.5 million volunteers registered with The Salvation Army in the U.S.

Citizens of every community, from every walk of life, greatly extend the scope of The Salvation Army’s service. In short, volunteers’ assistance enables The Salvation Army to meet far more needs than it could without their help.

A volunteer is a person who enters into Salvation Army service of his or her own will and does not receive any material compensation for services rendered. Volunteers provide direct service to clients and are able to focus on one task and give undivided attention to it.

Volunteers bring diversity in terms of age, race, social background, and approach. They increase the efficiency of The Salvation Army by providing “extra hands” to perform God’s work.

Advisory Board Members

Salvation Army offices utilize Advisory Boards to help guide the Army’s work in the local community. Advisory Board Members are community leaders who volunteer their time and talents to forward the mission and message of The Salvation Army. To learn more about the roles and responsibilities of Advisory Board Members, please contact your local Salvation Army office.