William Booth (1829 - 1912)
View images and photos of the speaker William Booth. Was a British Methodist preacher who founded The Salvation Army and became its first General (1878¬Ė1912). The Christian movement with a quasi-military structure and government founded in 1865 has spread from London, England to many parts of the world and is known for being one of the largest distributors of humanitarian aid. Though Booth became a prominent Methodist evangelist, he was unhappy that the annual conference of the denomination kept assigning him to a pastorate, the duties of which he had to neglect to respond to the frequent requests that he do evangelistic campaigns. At the Liverpool conference in 1861, after having spent three years at Gateshead, his request to be freed for evangelism full-time was refused yet again, and Booth resigned from the ministry of the Methodist New Connexion.
The name The Salvation Army developed from an incident in May 1878. William Booth was dictating a letter to his secretary George Scott Railton and said, "We are a volunteer army." Bramwell Booth heard his father and said, "Volunteer, I'm no volunteer, I'm a regular!" Railton was instructed to cross out the word "volunteer" and substitute the word "salvation". The Salvation Army was modelled after the military, with its own flag (or colours) and its own music, often with Christian words to popular and folkloric tunes sung in the pubs. Booth and the other soldiers in "God's Army" would wear the Army's own uniform, 'putting on the armour,' for meetings and ministry work. He became the "General" and his other ministers were given appropriate ranks as "officers". Other members became "soldiers".
Blood and FireDescription: Blood and Fire: William and Catherine Booth and the Salvation Army by Roy Hattersley ¬ďWhile women weep as they do now, I¬íll fight; while little children go hungry as they do now, I¬íll fight; while men go to prison, in and out, in and out, as they do now, I¬íll fight; while there is a drunkard left, while there is a poor lost girl on the streets, while there remains one dark soul without the light of God, I¬íll fight¬óI¬íll fight to the very end.¬Ē
Booth amongst a crowdDescription: They say we go too fast! This accusation comes from all directions. Our enemies do not like our speed and our friends are afraid of it. What do they mean? If they had complained that we did not go fast enough, I could understand them. If our enemies had argued that after all we say about the evils of sin, the terrors of the Judgment Day, and the damnation of hell, we do not believe in these things ourselves, I could understand that, and feel humbled under their indictment.
Booth PreachingDescription: The first essential that must be borne in mind as governing every scheme that may be put forward is that it must change the man when it is his character and conduct which constitute the reasons for his failure in the battle of life: if he is a drunkard, he must be made sober; if idle, he must be made industrious; if criminal, he must be made honest; if impure he must be made clean; and if he be so deep down in vice, and has been there so long that he has lost all heart and hope, and power to help himself, and absolutely refuses to move, he must be inspired with hope and have created within him the ambition to rise; otherwise he will never get out of the horrible pit.
Booth readingDescription: I have nothing to say against those who are endeavoring to open up a way of escape without any consciousness of God's help. For them I feel only sympathy and compassion. In so far as they are endeavoring to give bread to the hungry, clothing to the naked and above all, work to the workless, they are to that extent endeavoring to do the will of our Father which is in Heaven; and woe be unto all those who say them nay! But to be orphaned of all sense of the Fatherhood of God is surely not a secret source of strength. It is in most cases - it would be in my own - the secret of paralysis. If I did not feel my Father's hand in the darkness, and hear His voice in the silence of the night watches bidding me put my hand to this thing, I would shrink back dismayed; but as it is I dare not.
Booth reading 2Description: To attempt to save the lost we must accept no limitations to human brotherhood. If the scheme which I set forth in these and the following pages is not applicable to the thief, the harlot, the drunkard and the sluggard, it may as well be dismissed without ceremony. As Christ came to call not the Saints but sinners to repentance, so the new message of Temporal Salvation, of Salvation from pinching poverty, from rags and misery, must be offered to all. They may reject it, of course. But we who call ourselves by the name of Christ are not worthy to profess to be His disciples until we have set an open door before the least and worst of these who are now apparently imprisoned for life in a horrible dungeon of misery and despair.
Booth WritingDescription: No compulsion will for a moment be allowed with respect to religion. The man who professes to love and serve God will be helped because of such profession, and the man who does not will be helped in the hope that he will, sooner or later, in gratitude to God, do the same; but there will be no melancholy misery making for any. There is no sanctimonious long face in the Army. We talk freely about Salvation, because it is to us the very light and joy of our existence. We are happy, and we wish others to share our joy. We know by our own experience that life is a very different thing when we have found the peace of God, and are working together with Him for the Salvation of the world, instead of toiling for the realization of worldly ambition or the amassing of earthly gain.
Catherine and William BoothDescription: nil
Gen. William Booth, founder of the Salvation Army, standing next to his daughterDescription: nil
General Booth at the 'Mosque of Omar'Description: Booth's success attracted not only supporters but also enemies. Those who served in the Army were pelted with hot coals, sprayed with tar and burning sulphur, beat, stoned and even kicked to death in the streets. The Salvation Army resisted their enemies with a cheerful "God bless you", and a prayer. General Booth, himself was often in the thick of it. When spit on during the Midlands tour, Booth encouraged his fellow soldiers, "Don't rub it off - it's a medal!"
General Booth in JersusalemDescription: General Booth in the ruins of Martha and Mary's House at Bethany. One of the most effective weapons in General Booth's arsenal was fervent prayer. It was not unusual for Booth to hold "an all night of prayer" when he came to preach the Word of God. People would flood the altars every where he went. "The power of God was wonderfully manifest in the meetings . . . people were frequently, struck down, overwhelmed with a sense of the presence and power of God."
General Evangeline BoothDescription: Once while traveling, General Booth's car was detained. He took advantage of the opportunity and exhorted some idle factory workers. He said, "some of you men never pray, you gave up praying long ago. But I'm going to say to you, won't you pray for your children that they may be different?" Within minutes 700 men knelt in silent praye
Home of the Booths from 1858-61Description: At another time, two Salvation Army officers set out to found a new work, only to meet with failure and opposition. Frustrated and tired they appealed to the General to close the rescue mission. General Booth sent back a telegram with two words on it, "TRY TEARS." They followed his advice and they witnessed a mighty revival.
Potrait of William BoothDescription: During the course of William Booths ministry he traveled 5,000,000 miles and preached 60,000 sermons. God help us in this desperate and distracted day in which we live to heed the General's advice. "Work as if everything depended upon your work, and pray as if everything depended upon your prayer."
Salvation Army Building ChurchDescription: nil
Salvation Army chief, William Booth, tours the countryDescription: nil
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