Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Apologies Due GLBT Series 2013

Apologies Due

For some ways people have been treated in the precious movement known as The Salvation Army, they deserve an apology. This is not about me. The Salvation Army doesn’t owe me anything, but I know quite a few others that would do well to receive an apology.
Is it the movement that has offended? Sometimes. There are systemic flaws that affect people and do harm. More commonly, there are individuals in The Salvation Army that have hurt others in the name of The Salvation Army, and they need to apologize.
If that’s you and you’re in the Western Territory, please trust me enough to contact me and see if we can give you the apology you deserve. We may not be able to fix the situation, but we may facilitate the healing. I believe that’s what Jesus would do.
“Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.” Matthew 24:35 NIV
Commissioner James Knaggs


Anonymous said...

Dear Commissioner

With apology must come contrition, an acceptance of wrong doing on the part of the people apologising, and restitution in some form acceptable to the person[s] harmed.

Otherwise, dear friend, 'tis but empty words....

Old Hornblower

Anonymous said...

Agree about the contrition. I think restitution is a part of our compensatory culture that is too prevalent, and is not strictly required for an apology to be heartfelt and real.

Current officer

Anonymous said...

Dear Current Officer

Apology without restitution can be but words! The person making the apology might feel that it is "heartfelt" but that might mean nothing to the person "harmed".

Restitution might not mean "compensation", although there might be cases where monetary compensation would be appropriate - althought I cannot imagine anyone taking money from the Army in such circumstances - it might mean formal public apology, it might be re-instatement in a position formally held but wrongly taken away, [The brother of a friend was accused of making his unmarried Songster girl-friend pregnant and despite his protests suspended from the Band. The child on arrival had characteristics that proved it impossible for him to have been the father!

Re-instatement and formal public apology in a meeting would have been proper restitution. It didn't happen because the Officer involved could not bear to admit to being wrong! And the man left the Army forever with a burning sense of injustice.]

It is all terribly difficult, I do hope that Commissioner James is really sensitive to the nuances of circumstances that lead officers and others to leave: it is so very easy to make things worse!.

Kind regards

Old Hornblower

Anonymous said...

Since this article came out I am aware emails between the Commissioner and a quite lengthy phone call of which I wittnessed and overheard. The Commissioner helped set specific goals for one of his staff to continue in communication. That finally happened about 1 month after the phone call, but the staff member didn't follow through with the Commissioner's idea. I believe the Commissioner is a good man with good intentions, but he is also a man who is trying to minister outside of the box. He works with a staff who has no vision outside the box and remains trapped or imprisoned with in the organisation.