Merry Christmas! Let's help fund a cult (Salvation Army)?

They're there at every major storefront. Every time you run into the grocery store to buy a box of crackers. The Salvation Army!

So is the Salvation Army a cult? I gues it depends on how you define cult. A lot of people claim so.

Wikipedia article here.

"The Salvation Army's stated objectives are:

The advancement of the Christian religion as promulgated in the religious doctrines—which are professed, believed and taught by the Army and, pursuant there to, the advancement of education, the relief of poverty, and other charitable objects beneficial to society or the community of mankind as a whole"

The Crest
The oldest official emblem of The Salvation Army is the crest.

In 1878 the rename of the Christian Mission into the name The Salvation Army happened. Soon afterwards, Captain W.H. Ebdon suggested a crest and in 1879 it was to be found on the letterhead of the Salvation Army Headquarters. The captain's suggested design was changed only slightly and a crown was added.

The meaning of the crest:

The cross: The cross of the Lord Jesus Christ
The "S": Salvation from sin through Jesus
The ray on the outside of the circle: The Fire of the Holy Spirit
The dots: The Truth of the Gospel
The swords: The Salvation War*
"Blood and Fire": The Blood which was shed by Jesus for our sins and the Fire of the Holy Spirit

In case you're interested, the Salvation Army has long been regarded as antigay. Americablog (admittedly biased and a bit old) here.

I'm curious if other A|N members know more about the Salvation Army than I do. I don't want to spread any false accusations, but I also don't want people to mindlessly, and wellmeaningly drop money into the Salvation Army pot without knowing what they are doing.

Do you have a secular charity to give to in these terrible economic times?

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Amnesty International should change its name to Hate America International!
Why do you say this?
Even if their agenda wasn't so odious the damn bell ringing really annoys me. I give to charity whenever I can (especially the Lions Club) and I hate being accosted when I'm at the market then add the obnoxious bell ringing, like I can't see you there asking for money.
Sorry, this sounds grouchy. True, but grouchy.
Are Salvos a cult? No,just a fairly ordinary Protestant denomination which has an excellent reputation in Australia.

Do I give money to or support the Salvation Army? NO

Do I give rat's arse what other people do? NO

Do I support secular charities? YES. Several ad hoc and two by pledged giving:

Medicins Sans Frontieres

The Fred Hollows Foundation
If you ear mark it for "food to the poor" the Presbyterian Church does an excellent job. There are very few churches you can trust but I have worked with the Presbyterians and they are up and up Mainline Christians, prone to question the mythology as well as the historicity of Jesus, the Bible and a myriad of other beliefs...laughter. Their "groups" work their asses off in the community.

By the way, in all my associations with and working with the Presbyterians, no one has ever bridged a religious discussion with me or invited me to Sunday services...Imagine that.
Unfortunately the Salvation Army preaches a message of Hatred and Intolerance towards more than just the gay community. They are zealots and fanatics and sneaky as hell. Still, they do help (some) people.

I hear you about the bell thing. I don't think you are being grouchy at all. In-you-face efforts at guilt trips make me resentful I feel the same way with scouts tables that are set up in front of the door to the grocery store, so you have to walk around it to get into the store.
One I donate to on an irregular basis is Atheist Nexus.

This discussion was aired by an ex-member a while ago. I saved all the suggestions for Certified Non Lunatic Secular Charities in the Atheist Do-Gooders group.

It's good to bring this discussion up on a regular basis, but maybe without so much reinventing of the wheel.
yep, just competition to the dollar stores
I shop there from time to time
can't stand the radio "the lord has given you..." blah blah
lame music too; it's like elevator music with daggers to the freethinking brain up in there! Smells like old lady house too! : P

I remember when the head/pres pusher was out in front of the supermarket wearing what to me seemed like nazi regalia-uniform. same red and similar get-up; strange to me.

those salvoarmy types are slick
they waited until the economy really tanked and foreclosures granted the thrift shop primo placement and free stuff; surely they have a cart for 'collectables, antiques' etc.. money items. Lord is happy! And so is the guy with the McMansion.




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