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Stepping out in faith to establish new corps

Stepping out in faith to establish new corps

Stepping out in faith to establish new corps

16 February 2022

Standing in front of the Port Adelaide lighthouse before the inaugural ‘prayer walk’, (from left) Maria Anderson, Melanie Myts, Arndale Corps Officer Major Gratton Savage, Linda Baker, Port Adelaide/Semaphore Corps Officers Majors Claire and Tim Watson, and Megumi and Steve Webb. Photograph: Arndale Corps Officer Major Glenda Savage.

By Darryl Whitecross

Majors Claire and Tim Watson have been appointed to Port Adelaide/Semaphore as the new Corps Officers, but there’s one catch – there’s no corps there … yet.

Tim said the corps of the future would not be the reopening of the old Semaphore Corps nor a new plant in the heart of Port Adelaide, but a “new beginning” for the Army on the LeFevre Peninsula to be known as Port Adelaide/Semaphore Salvos.

“The shape and format of any future gatherings will emerge organically in time,” he said.

Tim explained that the appointment, at least for the first six months, would involve discovering the community assets, needs, and opportunities to learn how the Army could be part of what God already was doing in the area. As an initial part of that learning curve, Tim said regular ‘prayer walks’ would be held in the area, providing a chance to see up close what ministry opportunities there were.

Claire is coordinating these prayer walks, using a similar model to the prayer walks she coordinated in the couple’s previous appointment at Murray Bridge, 80km east of Adelaide.

The first prayer walk was held on Sunday 30 January at 5pm, beginning at the historic Port Adelaide lighthouse. Nine people took part, including several from neighbouring Arndale Corps and some from South Australia/Northern Territory Divisional Headquarters. The walks begin at a different location each week.

Mission partner

Arndale Corps is a mission partner in the initiative. Major Glenda Savage, Arndale Corps Officer, said many corps folk had “already signed up” to become prayer partners for their new neighbour.

She said that while Port Adelaide/Semaphore Salvos became established, Arndale would provide a faith community – a place and programs – for new contacts from the new initiative. The delivery of Doorways ministries in the area and the possibility of English classes for the new Australians were part of the mission expressions being considered.

Tim said he and Claire would value the prayers of Salvationists around Australia as they began the new venture.

They plan to produce a monthly newsletter with “praise and prayer points” to keep people updated with what is happening. To sign up to receive the newsletter, email Claire at claire.watson@salvationarmy.org.au.

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