Becoming a Salvation Army soldier involves a commitment to a relationship with God and to living a Salvationist lifestyle, so it's a serious matter.
The first requirement for anyone who wishes to become a soldier is that they are 'saved' - they have asked God to forgive their wrong attitudes and actions, they ask Jesus into their life and, with His help, determine how to live a life that is pleasing to Him.
Before anyone becomes a soldier they attend a series of informal 'classes where, with a Salvationist whose responsibility it is to care for those wishing to become soldiers, they study Salvation Army beliefs and what a Salvationist lifestyle is like. These classes may be held for one person only or for a group of people, depending on such things as how many wish to become soldiers and convenience of times. Those who are attending such classes are known as 'recruits'.
Having completed these classes, if anyone doubts whether it is right for them to become a soldier they may prefer to delay it or decide against soldiership altogether. If the decision to be a soldier still stands, the recruits' names are presented to the corps pastoral care council for acceptance as soldiers.
A public ceremony of swearing-in as a soldier is then held, usually during a regular Sunday meeting.
If people do not want to take on the commitment of soldiership, but still wish to make The Salvation Army their church, they may become adherents instead.
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