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Leadership and structure

The Salvation Army Australia is part of a worldwide Christian and charitable organisation whose members demonstrate their faith and beliefs through bringing hope, care and support to those in need.

The Salvation Army operates in 130 countries and is led by the General who provides spiritual and administrative guidance to Salvation Army units around the world and is located at the Army’s International Headquarters (IHQ) in London, England.

A quasi-military command structure was adopted in 1878 when the title ‘The Salvation Army’ was brought into use. As a response to a recurrent theme in Christianity which sees the Church engaged in spiritual warfare, The Salvation Army today uses this structure and soldier-like characteristics such as uniforms, flags and ranks to identify, inspire and regulate its mission.

International leadership

The main responsibilities of The Salvation Army's General and the International Headquarters administrative departments is to deal with strategic and long-range planning and to act as resource centre for the worldwide Army.

Read more about our International Leaders

Australian leadership

The next level in our structure is a Territory. Territories usually corresponds to a country, however, many countries with a numerically strong Salvation Army presence may be divided into a number of territories. The Territory is headed by the Territorial Commander, usually having the rank of Commissioner or Colonel.

Find out more about our Australian Territorial Commander

Structure, symbols and terminology

As well as the distinct structure of The Salvation Army, there are a number of different symbols and terms used which makes it recognisable to the general public.

Structure, symbols and terminology explained

Officers, soldiers and adherents

Members of The Salvation Army actively support the Army’s mission and are identified as adherents, soldiers and officers.

Learn more

The Salvation Army Australia acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land on which we meet and work and pay our respect to Elders past, present and future.

We value and include people of all cultures, languages, abilities, sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions and intersex status. We are committed to providing programs that are fully inclusive. We are committed to the safety and wellbeing of people of all ages, particularly children.

Diversity & Inclusion logo

The Salvation Army is an international movement. Our mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in his name with love and without discrimination.

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Gifts of $2 or more to the social work of The Salvation Army in Australia are tax deductible.Details and ABNs

Hope where it's needed most