Ministry Discovery Program

Salvation Army Leadership Defined

The essence of Salvation Army leadership is defined in the Salvation Army publication The Role of the Corps Officer In The United States Of America

  • Evangelist
  • Shepherd
  • Preacher
  • Recruiter
  • Trainer and leader of a fighting force
  • Group leader and coordinator
  • Social worker
  • Business administrator
  • Voice of Christianity to the community at large
  • Community leader
  • Co-worker with other Salvation Army departments and units
  • Public relations director

Ministry Discovery Individuals

The Ministry Discovery Program will introduce individuals to Salvation Army ministries, beliefs and practices while utilizing their abilities and leadership. MDI’s (Ministry Discovery Individuals) involved with the Ministry Discovery Program will be individuals who demonstrate potential for Salvation Army leadership. Generally, they have declared an interest in serving God as an officer in The Salvation Army.

Common characteristics may include:

  • Evidence of leadership ability
  • A commitment to full-time ministry
  • A high degree of initiative and work ethic
  • A desire to experience and understand the ministry of a Salvation Army officer


Interested individuals may be identified by field or divisional staff officers via the Territorial Candidate and Recruitment Department. Recruitment may include young adults with education in Biblical Studies, Social Work, Youth ministry, Discipleship, Leadership, and other subjects likely to be good preparation for officership. These individuals may include college and seminary students near graduation who are interested in lifelong ministry, and are willing to consider The Salvation Army yet are not Salvationists. Also eligible would be Salvationist college students and those who have 3-4 years of ministry experience.


Placement of the MDI will be determined by available settings and supervising officers. The Candidate Department would approve divisional commander proposals for corps officers who could best serve as mentor, encourager, teacher, trainer, supervisor, and other appropriate leadership of the program.  Corps officers would give the MDI ample opportunity to assist in a full range of the ministries of the Army (not just one job role), explain Army beliefs and practices, and train for potential soldiership.

Ministry Discovery Job Description

The job description for each MDI will provide opportunities for training in all areas of leadership. The individual job descriptions may vary from location to location depending upon ministries available and the needs of the MDI for development. MDI’s should experience a full range of ministries and responsibilities including the following:

  • Leadership skills development
  • Personal and group evangelism
  • Become familiar with Salvation Army history, doctrine and theology
  • Salvation Army programming
  • Biblical training and leadership
  • Pastoral counseling
  • Fund raising
  • Christian education
  • Pastoral and outreach visitation
  • Preaching
  • Identifying and addressing community needs
  • Personal disciplines and development
  • Social service assistance
  • Interoffice communication skills
  • Statistical and financial reporting
  • Vehicle and property maintenance
  • Office procedures
  • Community Care Ministries
  • Intra and interpersonal relationships
  • Gifts in Kind
  • Disaster work


The Ministry Discovery Program is an attempt to develop the skills and understanding of individuals so they are ready to enter the College for Officer Training. It is important for the MDI to understand the spirit on the Army, the mission and the ministry.

In the attempt to train the MDI, the following schedule is suggested. The MDI program may be adjusted by the supervising officer to address specific skills or understandings.

General and ongoing education throughout the program

  • Salvation Army history, doctrine and theology
  • Personal discipleship
  • Leadership and planning for at least one assigned ongoing program (i.e. Character Building program, Singing Company, Junior Soldiers, Sunday School, etc.)
  • Holiness Meeting planning and follow through.
  • Worship meetings leadership and participation
  • Christian Education leadership and participation
  • Weekly program participation and leadership
  • Short and Long term goal setting
  • Office procedures
  • Social Service intake
  • Personal development


To be discussed at time of placement.


Leadership development plans will be designed for each MDI based on the principles used in evaluation and review of cadets. Each plan will consist of several steps to be taken by the MDI with a possibility for progression through the steps. Supervising officers will prepare quarterly reports in the MDI’s progress.