7月2日は、救世軍創立153年の記念日です

1865年7月2日、ロンドンの片隅で牧師ウイリアム・ブースによるテントでの伝道集会がなされました。救世軍は、この日を救世軍のスタートの日と定めて記念しています。

英国ロンドンにある救世軍の万国本営(本部)の現在の建物を設計した設計者が、設計の意図とともに内部を紹介しています。ぜひご覧ください!

https://www.facebook.com/GeneralAndreCox/videos/984577371704767/

International Headquarters – Building for Mission

It has been a privilege to serve at the Army’s International Headquarters for the past five years, firstly as Chief of the Staff and latterly as General. For those of you who know the building, it is deliberately visible and transparent – very different from the building that preceded it. Following the relocation of the newly-established United Kingdom Territory with the Republic of Ireland back in the mid 1990s, it was realised that the existing ‘101’ building would be far too big for the remaining needs of IHQ, and the building itself needed much improvement to make it fit for the needs of the 21st Century. A complete replacement was therefore deemed necessary, and with that the opportunity to ensure that the building complemented the international mission of the Army. I give much credit to one of my predecessors, the late General John Gowans, who sensed the importance of remaining in that historic location in the City of London, but also to gain advantage from the potential of a forthcoming adjacent development – the Millennium Bridge over the River Thames. Many may not know, but the pre-war conglomerate of buildings that accommodated the Army’s various headquarters at the time spanned quite a considerable length of Queen Victoria Street, including part of what is now the neighbouring City of London Boys’ School. However, and taking advantage of the large scale demolition caused due to the blitz, the Corporation of London had in mind to create a walkway from St Paul’s Cathedral to the river and moved the IHQ footprint a little further eastwards. But it was the proposed construction of a new footbridge across the Thames, linking the walkway from St Paul’s to the Southbank, that sparked the interest of General John, for he began to appreciate the potential of the estimated three million people a year who would thereafter walk straight past the Army’s site. Never again, he argued, could the Army afford that level of profile and visibility, and he charged the developers to ensure that the new IHQ building would maximise this potential by facing directly on to this vista. My reason for including this detail in this week’s devotional is that on this day, 10th June, 18 years ago in the year 2000, the Millennium Footbridge became internationally infamous for opening and closing on the same day. You may be aware of the very slender design by the Arup Group, Foster and Partners, and Sir Anthony Caro, which was found to be susceptible to swaying when the first groups of people walked across the walkway – gaining the unfortunate description as ‘the wobbly bridge’. The tendency of a suspension bridge to sway when people walk over it in formation was well known, which is why troops are required to break step when crossing such a bridge. Somehow this phenomenon was not appreciated or counteracted in the original design, and to prevent this unintended feature being exploited, access to the bridge was restricted for some two years. Thankfully, a series of dampeners were designed and fitted without compromising the overall structure, thus, by the time the new International Headquarters was opened in November 2004, an average of 15,000 people a day were already walking past our door. And, to make the purpose of the building even more prominent and apparent, General John Larsson worked with a team of graphic designers to feature scriptural texts and other images around the periphery of the building and on most of the internal walls as well. It was intended that, due to the use of glass on the external walls, those passing by would also be in no doubt as to the purpose of the building, and able to observe staff at IHQ at work and at worship – including the General! Needless to say, a small minority of those walking past our doors make comment regarding the apparent ostentatiousness of the building, perhaps not appreciating that the building itself and the number of who work there – considering the magnitude and scope of the work being administered – is remarkably frugal. But a goodly number of international visitors making their way from one tourist hotspot to another are ready to appreciate the Army’s presence and that the design seeks to be engaging and informative. But the challenge always was, and will continue to be, how to balance the maximising of our visibility and profile without over-emphasising the organisation? In Matthew’s Gospel (5:16) we are encouraged to let our light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. In my experience, it is most difficult to enlighten those who pass by, or who engage with us in any way, as to the purpose and motivation behind all that we do, thus giving glory to God himself. And, I would suggest, this is as true for each of us as individuals as it is for the movement as a whole. I am pleased, therefore to affirm that the staff at IHQ support and take part in a number of events and activities throughout the year – many of these recently under the umbrella of the Mobilising initiative – which actively and deliberately seek to engage with those passing the building and those in the neighbourhood. It is not enough to allow the Army badge to speak for us – important as this is. It is equally important that there is a proactive, visible and personal engagement to reinforce what we are about, but also striving by all means possible to demonstrate the motivation behind all that we seek to undertake. I do appreciate that International Headquarters did have unique opportunities – both in terms of a new building and that of a development that brought and continues to bring many people past our front door – but my challenge today is for us to consider whether we are intentional about reaching out and engaging with those with whom we come into contact. This would apply equally to each expression of ministry and mission – both personal and corporate. As the Apostle Paul wrote to the young church at Ephesus (Ephesians 5:16), we too should make the most of every opportunity. Commissioner Silvia joins me in challenging Salvationists everywhere to be intentional in their visibility, ministry and service today, maximising all possible means that people will see all that we do and glorify our Father in heaven. AC (Video shows IHQ's architect exploring the building, explaining the design – find out more at https://www.salvationarmy.org/ihq/location)

General André Coxさんの投稿 2018年6月9日土曜日