Territorial Strategic Mission Plan (2006-2010)

The New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga territory has placed emphasis on strategic planning for many years, including our Millennium Strategy, followed by our Six, then Seven Imperatives.

Mission Priority Review

In 2004, facing financial and personnel pressures, territorial leadership recognised that we simply could not continue to do all that we were currently doing . A working group was formed to look at our 'mission priorities' with a view to 'mission wash' The Salvation Army - to prune what wasn't effective. This quickly changed back to our mission priorities - to identify what we wanted more of, and so the mission plan was born.

Mission Planning and Goals

Forty-five delegates gathered at Capital House in Wellington for a weekend retreat and discussed our mission, the future environment and the perceived issues faced. After two further retreats and discussion forums across the territory, the Territorial Strategic Mission Plan (TSMP) was launched in March 2006, containing four goals for The Salvation Army in New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga to 2010:

  • To grow all Salvationists as dynamic disciples
  • To increase the number of new soldiers
  • To take significant steps towards the eradication of poverty in New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga
  • To be a connected, streamlined and mission-focused Army.


While we remained committed to our mission of Caring for People, Transforming Lives and Reforming Society, the goals provided a way to address particular issues that leadership felt were limiting our mission effectiveness.

For example, it was felt that many Salvationists had become somewhat apathetic in their faith, hence the focus on growing them as dynamic disciples and social justice. With the addition of a faith commitment to the adherency pledge in the mid-1990s, a trend emerged where soldiership was promoted less resulting in a rapid decline in our soldiers roll. We were also struggling with a silo-mentality and a general feeling that we could be far more effective if everyone was more focused and working together.

Working Groups

Three working groups were established to look at how we might achieve each of the goals. Their particular areas of focus were:

  • Discipleship (goals 1 and 2)
  • Counter-culturalism and poverty (goal 3 - with links to goals 1 and 2)
  • Connected, streamlined and mission-focused Army (goal 4).

The Unleashing

To ensure widespread understanding of the plan, the critical need for the goals, and to communicate the details from the working groups, all Officers and representative lay people gathered in Christchurch in February 2007 for "The Unleashing", a two-day conference consisting of a series of presentations by senior leaders and a chance for divisional / service area discussions.

Mission-focused Funding

To support the Strategic Mission Plan goals, the Territory established one new funding stream and redirected an existing stream (EDF):

  • An Unleashing Fund - $2 million released to unleash the potential of mission-hearted people within The Salvation Army by providing financial support for learning opportunities.
    > Read more about the Unleashing Fund
  • A Strategic Mission Fund - Approximately $1.7 million earmarked to support strategic mission imperatives, to grow God's Kingdom and achieve His purposes.
    > Read more about the Strategic Mission Fund

The Results

The plan has been extremely successful in providing focus and rallying Salvationists and staff around these goals. For example, since these goals were ‘unleashed’ early in 2007:

  • More than 600 soldiers were enrolled and in 2010 there were 40 cadets in training - the most for 20 years
  • Leadership Jesus Way seminars have been held across New Zealand
  • We commenced a range of new social services, including prisoner re-integration, senior service pilots, addictions pilot with the mongrel mob, methampethamine programmes
  • There developed a much tighter link between many centres including new one-stop shops and sharing of services (e.g. some of our Addiction programmes started to include job readiness training from our Employment Plus)
  • Our distribution of food parcels (a ‘front door’ to Salvation Army support for many people in need) increased by 65 per cent
  • There became far greater awareness and interest around social justice issues. Terms like ‘Fair Trade’ and ‘Sexual Traffiking’ became better known, our child sponsorship increased by 50% and research reports from our Social Policy and Parliamentary Unit directly impacted some Government policy. Just Action social justice conferences commenced.
  • New corps plants have been opened in Western Tonga, Wellington 614, Masterton, Botany Downs, Tamaki and Korotolutolu (Fiji)
  • We introduced a PC rental system, free mobile phone calling between centres, a new finance system and centralised payroll
  • Corps, community ministry centres and divisions commenced a new mission review process to consider their mission effectiveness.

In response to a survey about the strategic mission plan, one person commented “God has blessed this plan and generated a more coordinated focus in The Salvation Army than I have experienced in over 35 years.”

We believe that one of the main reasons the plan has been successful is because of our faith in God, and the widespread prayer that undergirthed the whole planning process, particularly through 24-7 prayer.

The Next Chapter

To maintain this momentum, territorial leadership decided to extend the TSMP for three years (from October 2010 to 2013) - under the banner of 'TSMP - The Next Chapter'. This was launched at the Mission 2010 Congress in October 2010, before further update in 2013..

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