Countdown underway for 2020 congress
By: Dan Childs
Preparations have begun for the USA South’s first territorial congress since 2008. The upcoming event will unfold June 5-7, 2020, in Atlanta.
The congress will be held at the Infinite Energy Arena in suburban Gwinnett County. The venue was the site of the 2008 territorial congress.
Territorial congresses are customarily held every four or five years. The South, however, opted to forego a congress in 2012 or 2013 and direct its energy and attention to preparations for the Boundless International Congress in London in 2015, which commemorated The Salvation Army’s 150th anniversary.
The 2015 congress was, in fact, planned by Lt. Colonels Eddie and Kathy Hobgood, who currently serve as secretary and assistant secretary for program in the South. The Hobgoods will likewise coordinate the planning and preparation for the 2020 congress, which is in its early stages. Registration is projected to begin early this autumn.
“I’m sure our congress will tie in directly with General (Brian) Peddle’s Call to Mission, so that will be one of the key themes that will be incorporated into each of the four programs,” Lt. Colonel Hobgood said.
In his 2019 New Year message, General Peddle challenged The Salvation Army to live in a state of readiness to accomplish God’s purposes and called on Salvationists to be “battle-ready.”
Lt. Colonel Hobgood added that the three-day event will consist of united sessions on Friday evening, Saturday morning and evening and Sunday morning. The commissioning of the Messengers of the Kingdom will be the focal point of Sunday morning’s session.
The commencement of the Messengers of the Kingdom session, followed by the Silver Star Luncheon, will be held on Friday, and a territorial officers councils will take place that afternoon. Saturday afternoon’s festivities will likely include rallies for men, women and young people. Childcare services will be provided throughout the weekend, and separate programs will be held for junior soldiers.