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Going back to the very beginning, it was in 1865 in the east end of London UK, that William Booth a fiery Methodist minister, made a decision.
He could no longer preach the Christian Gospel to people who were suffering without also addressing their suffering.
He abandoned the comfort of his pulpit to take his message to the streets to the poor, the hungry and the homeless. With his wife, Catherine, William founded the Christian Mission, and soup kitchens were the first in a long line of projects to provide physical and spiritual outreach to people in London’s most forsaken neighbourhoods.
In 1878, the organisation was renamed The Salvation Army and followed a military structure in its ranks. This structure of command still exists today. Distinguishing itself through two world wars, through its work with the armed forces, The Army came to be appreciated as an essential international charity organisation.
Today, The Salvation Army, along with its churches (called Corps) is active in more than 130 countries providing a vast number of services to people in need. South Africa is one of these countries.
This expansion has been enabled by the partnership of people of good will who donate financially, in kind, and in their time as volunteers.