Monday, 2 February 2015


Lieut-Colonels Jayne and Jonathan Roberts

It's been just four months since we moved from London to Scotland to take up our new posts – Jayne in the East Scotland Divisional Headquarters as Divisional Director for Personnel and I in the Scotland Office as Assistant to the Secretary for Scotland.

Having never lived north of the border, we've enjoyed this time of getting to know new people and new places. As Salvation Army officers, moving house is not a novel experience! This time, however, there's been a new dimension. It's the first time we've moved without any of our children, Daniel (27), Sonia (24), Joanna (21), Rebecca (18). All of them are living and working or studying in the London area.

We met just over 30 years ago when we were both training to be Salvation Army officers. Jayne was commissioned a year before I was, so her first appointment was as a single officer at Crawley Corps (church), Sussex in 1985. A year later I took up my first appointment at Caterham in Surrey, where Jayne joined me when we were married later that year. Next we moved to Plumstead in South London, then Cwmbran in South Wales before our final corps appointment (so far!) at Cardiff Canton. Corps leadership is a rewarding experience, and we were privileged to know, and minister to, many lovely people during those years. Of course, this kind of ministry also has its challenges and frustrations, but God works it all together for good!

In 2005 we headed to the East Midlands Divisional Headquarters in Nottingham – Jayne as Divisional Family Officer and I as Divisional Director for Evangelism. After six weeks in these posts we had a phone call asking us to an interview in London with the territorial commander. We wondered what we'd done wrong in such a short time! But the TC informed us that we were to be the divisional leaders the following year. Supporting and resourcing those in front line ministry was a tremendous privilege and an awesome responsibility, but we were blessed with a great team to share the load with.

Then in 2010 we were appointed to International Headquarters in London where Jayne became the Editor of the Year Book and I the Under Secretary for Europe. This gave us new insights into the internationalism of The Salvation Army, at work in 126 countries, and opportunities to meet many fascinating people.

Now here we are in Scotland! Jayne's work is mainly with the officers in the East Scotland Division, whereas my role covers parliamentary and ecumenical work, as well as helping to co-ordinate Mission Scotland.
God is good, and we’re excited about what he has in store for us – and for the Army – in the days that lie ahead.

No comments:

Post a Comment