Posted by Doreen Higgins on Mar 25, 2019
On Wednesday Paul Egan told us of the work and joy of a lifetime spent with the Salvation Army, first with his family and later as an officer working in it. The Salvation Army was first established in 1865 in London, England; its mission was to help with food, clothing, shelter, for all with such needs.
Its ‘leader’ was General Booth, a name which has become synonymous with the religious and practical objectives of the organization he founded. Its message and functions ‘spread like wildfire,’ according to Paul, and to this day the work has continued. Paul was born in Ft. Stewart, Ga. His father was retired Air Force who worked as a civilian in air traffic control for the US Army and Marine Corps. Paul’s mother, whose family was nurtured by the Salvation Army when she was a child, often “volunteered” Paul’s service, when he was a boy, to the Salvation Army. Paul sometimes resented this but grew up to appreciate the Army’s activities and finally to admire what it does in our society. This grew into a cherished career.

Paul learned thrift, saving, and recycling through his family; his mother was a ‘recycler’ and found value in things seemingly used up and found ‘use, beauty, and worth’ in them again. He thinks of the Salvation Army as “God’s recyclers” and said the Army found use, beauty and worth in the many human lives which it is called upon to help. Paul went on to describe some of the many activities of the Army, including help with housing, both permanent living and transitional housing and day care. The Army offers learning opportunities and six month rehab programs, giving those who participate the opportunity to “turn their life around.” Paul told us that these programs are effective in an area which is hard to succeed; their objective is to help stabilize those in need of such help and to effect their return to the work force wherever possible.

Paul went on to describe some of the activities of the Salvation Army. There are parades and locations where donations of clothes, bedding and furniture may be made. Financial contributions and support are key to the organization’s activities, and individuals who can offer assistance with the programs are always welcome. Paul thanked us for our interest and for the opportunity to tell us about his “wonderful organization.”
Below are pictured President Andy with Karen Jahn and Paukl Egan.