London, 12 February 2015/IHQ/ – FORTY-NINE Salvation Army officers from The Salvation Army's South Pacific and East Asia (SPEA) Zone met in Taipei, Taiwan, for the SPEA Leaders Zonal Conference, under the title 'Moving Forward in the Power of God'.
Special guests for the event were the Chief of the Staff (Commissioner William Roberts) and Commissioner Nancy Roberts (World Secretary for Women's Ministries), whose presence and contributions were greatly appreciated. They were supported by the International Secretary for SPEA (Commissioner Gillian Downer), Zonal Secretary for Women’s Ministries Commissioner Denise Swansbury and Major Barry Casey (under secretary).
The chaplain for the conference was Commissioner Keith Banks, who had previously served in the SPEA Zone. He brought challenge and blessing each day through a series of meditations that added greatly to the sacred atmosphere of the conference. His overall theme of ‘Coming to the Table’ provided much spiritual nutrition and sustenance under the sub-themes the Table of Presence, the Table of Provision, the Table of Acceptance, the Table of Example, the Table of Revelation and the Table of Forgiveness.
Following the Keynote Address prepared by General André Cox and delivered by the Chief of the Staff, a number of sessions were held under the umbrella of 'Accountability', with delegates considering the themes Child Protection, Finance, Governance, Impact Measurement, Continued Growth, Leadership Development, Resourcing the Mission and Resourcing the Zone.
God’s presence was evident as the delegates spoke about ‘Grace Moments’ in their lives and, in keeping with the chaplain's theme, a ‘Grace Table’ was formed during the week to display significant items relating to those moments.
During the final worship meeting the Chief of the Staff and Commissioner Nancy Roberts both spoke to the conference. Commissioner Nancy offered words of testimony, drawing on memories from her life, and the Chief gave a Bible message from Mark 10:35-45. Taking the theme ‘Serving Leaders’ he reminded the gathered leaders to aspire to Jesus' example of servant leadership, emphasised by verse 45: ‘The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve’ (English Standard Version).