by Captain Catherine Mount

Everyone’s life has been changed this past year. But regardless of a global pandemic, the Holy Spirit has been moving in hearts. When He moves, we can either respond, delay or disobey.

In August of 2020, Neisha McNeal felt moved by the Holy Spirit to make The Salvation Army her church home. She has worked in ministry as an employee of the Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) Command for the past five years and often has encouraged beneficiaries to find a corps to be their church home. It occurred to her, “Why am I not attending a corps?” With that revelation and encouragement from Salvationists at work, Neisha began attending the Norridge Citadel, Ill., Corps worship services online. She then took the initiative to reach out to us to inquire about soldiership and getting connected to the Norridge Citadel family.

Since then, Neisha has joined a women’s Bible study and completed an online recruits class with Pamela Church-Pryor, Norridge Citadel recruits sergeant. Never before has Norridge offered a recruits class on a digital platform. It created a unique opportunity for Pamela and Neisha to build a relationship and to walk through Salvation Army doctrines and the commitments of soldiership. Neisha mentioned that this one-on-one format created a great space for personalization and learning.

Neisha has connected with the corps through online prayer meetings and worship services, Zoom Bible study, and completing her recruits class on Teams before ever attending in person. On Easter Sunday, with her family’s support, Neisha became the newest soldier of Norridge Citadel.

Neisha has a solid foundation of faith modeled by her paternal grandmother. The importance of God’s Word and the power of prayer were present in her early childhood and remained a comfort through her adolescence and adulthood, especially when life was difficult and circumstances were challenging. Neisha kept Jeremiah 29:11 in mind as a comfort and a reminder that God has a plan for her and that “it is always a good one, no matter how challenging it may seem.”

Salvationists have had an influence on Neisha’s journey to soldiership, including several officers who have served with the ARC. She fondly remembers Captain Alex Velasquez saying the Lord had great plans for her at The Salvation Army and she would one day be wearing epaulets. While the encouragement was given with humor, it’s a joy to see it become a reality. The Holy Spirit has moved through circumstances, people and technology in His perfect timing for Neisha to become a soldier in The Salvation Army.







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