Chief of the Staff Commissioner Edward Hill and World Secretary for Women’s Ministries Commissioner Shelley Hill joined The Salvation Army’s USA Western Territory to open 2024 by participating in the 135th Tournament of Roses parade on 1 January.
The annual New Year’s Day Tournament of Roses parade is held in Pasadena, California, and has a five-and-a-half-mile route that travels down Colorado Boulevard. The parade includes floral-decorated floats, equestrian units and bands.
This year, The Salvation Army 2024 Tournament of Roses Band included England’s Bromley Temple Corps Band and musicians from the United States and Canada territories. The Salvation Army forms a band each year and has been the longest-performing band to have participated in the parade, having marched at every event since 1920.
A BEAUTIFUL EXAMPLE OF MINISTRY
Chief of the Staff Commissioner Edward Hill said, ‘The band was thrilled to be part of the parade. We played favourites, including ‘Amazing Grace’ and ‘Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus’, for the people lining the streets and the many watching on TV at home. The band was multi-generational and provided a beautiful example of how the ministry can have a tremendous impact in the community.’
Commissioner Edward Hill continued, ‘It takes endurance to walk that distance whilst playing an instrument and this endurance can be related back to the endurance of living a Christian life. When I think about endurance, I think of the teachings from Matthew 14:22-26 and the underlying messages that we should commit to prayer, accept that there will be storms, be aware of the Lord’s presence, keep one’s focus on Jesus and be assured of restoration when we stumble.’
He concluded by saying, ‘God sees the potential in us to progress in our faith, to strengthen our relationship with him and become more like Jesus. In our bleakest moments of failure, God will restore us. When there are storms in life, Jesus will show up. Let’s keep our eyes on him.’
ANNUAL NEW YEAR’S CONCERT
On New Year’s Eve, the commissioners also participated in the annual New Year’s Concert at the Tustin Ranch Corps in California. The concert featured the Bromley Temple Corps Band with Commissioner Edward Hill on the E-flat bass. Led by Bandmaster Matt Miles, the band performed a variety of instrumental and vocal performances to encourage those present to glorify God and keep their gaze fixed on him. The highlights were ‘Deus Solus’ (Only God) by Andrew Wainwright and a joint performance with the Tustin Ranch Corps Band for the traditional classic ‘Auld Lang Syne’.
The band played the song ‘Speak, O Lord’ and Commissioner Edward Hill offered a closing prayer: ‘We don’t know what storms may be in front of us, what opportunities, what challenges, but we do trust in you because we know that you want what is best for us.’