Salvation Army Leader may loose job over marraige

United States
December 5, 2008 10:05am CST
The leader of the salvation Army in Wiscosin may loose his job because of who is choosing to marry. He is planning on marring a woman who is not affiliated with the Salvation Army. They are to married in June. There is a rule in the Salvation Army saying that a officer of the Salvation Army may ONLY marry another officer of the Salvation Army. When asked a spokesman for the Salvation Army said the agency's rules are the same all over the world and will be upheld. Isn't this unconstitutional and against the law to tell someone who they can and can not marry....or at least to tell someone if they do not marry someone from their group you will be fired?
2 people like this
5 responses
@aero89 (422)
• United States
5 Dec 08
This is not a surprise to the officer, first of all. It's in black and white on their website and probably a topic of discussion once in a while around the water cooler. Secondly, private organizations are able to have their own rules. This just happens to be one of them. They also want to turn the whole world Christian, which is also unconstitutional in many cases, just not this one. The Salvation Army is to be commended for sticking to what they believe is right for their business and morale, whether or not it is 'right' to you and me. They undoubtedly have their reasons for this marriage requirement; and as long as they continue to do massive amounts of charity work and disaster relief, their name shouldn't be tarnished. We should be so lucky that there is actually a place where tradition matters.
• United States
5 Dec 08
Well it is bad publicity. It makes me look at them differently. I did not know this about them. I just thought htey were a charity group that helped people out. I did not know they actually told their employees who they could and could not marry. The man needs to go find another job. One that lets him make his own decisions when it comes to his personal life.
@aero89 (422)
• United States
5 Dec 08
Yes, he does. Who is he to come in and try to change the rules that have been followed for years? Surely, his services will be useful elsewhere. It's sad that this makes you look at them differently. Regardless of their rules, they help MILLIONS of people all over the world! And one guy breaks the rules (yes BREAKS the rules) and suddenly the Salvation Army is the bad guy?! I don't get it
@aero89 (422)
• United States
5 Dec 08
And by the way, these people are supposed to be held to a higher standard amongst themselves, like cops and teachers. They sacrifice their own personal lives and preferences in order to serve mankind, so their personal choices should come secondary to the kind of work they do. They whole idea of charity is that - there's more to life than yourself.
• United States
5 Dec 08
The Salvation Army isn't just a philanthropic organization. It's an official religious denomination. My understanding is that officers in the Salvation Army serve the same role as clergy in other denominations. In other words, being an Officer in the SA isn't just a job, it's a calling. The person who said this is comparable to a Catholic priest saying that he wants to marry but expects to remain a priest is pretty much right, at least as far as I can understand it as someone who is not a member of the SA. Does that put a different light on the situation for you?
• United States
5 Dec 08
I don't mean that to sound combative, btw. I just know that I see it very differently knowing that it's a religious denomination. I know a little bit about the SA - a friend worked for them in an executive position some years ago. He knew from the outset that he could only advance so far in the organization because he was not a member of the Army and the higher positions were reserved for officers. It's one thing for a business to say that you can only marry other people that work for us. It's different for a religion to place those same restrictions on its members.
• United States
5 Dec 08
I agree, and Catholics and Orthodox faiths I believe must marry inside of their religious sect, although even they are not that strict. I didn't think that the Salvation Army was so closed to other denominations... even within the Protestant sect (which they are a part of). I am very shocked to hear this news story.
• United States
5 Dec 08
Keep in mind that this doesn't apply to all members - it only applies to Officers in the SA.
@gewcew23 (8012)
• United States
5 Dec 08
Whether this is or is not against the law, Salvation Army should not go down this road. The Salvation Army needs a constant flow of donations and I do not think this behavior warrants anyone giving them anymore of their hard earn wealth. As to the legality the Salvation Army is a religious organization just as a church is. This would be like a Catholic Priest deciding to marry and the Church ordering him to leave the priesthood. I do not think a law suit could work because this man should have know about this rule before he became an officer. Still this is not a good decision on the part of the Salvation Army when they are in the middle of their red kettle drive.
• United States
5 Dec 08
I think you are right. He knew the rule when he signed up. So he can not really complain now. The best he can do is just get another job. But it is bad publicity for the salvation army. I will be thinking twice before I drop any of my change into their red kettles this year.
1 person likes this
@aero89 (422)
• United States
5 Dec 08
I think it's a great decision to do what you think is right, regardless of what people might say about you. It shows courage and solidifies their traditions. Too often, people/businesses waver to cater to the minority (I give you eHarmony).. This won't affect the red kettle drive whatsoever. People love to feel like they are helping, especially this time of year, so the drive will be fine. And for those who decide "nah, I won't give because that guy couldn't marry that outsider," - I pray you never need the assistance of the Salvation Army, because the guilt you'd feel wouldn't go away for a while. And they'd still help you, in spite of yourself. Congrats to the Salvation Army for not wavering from their tradition/belief system.
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Dec 08
I agree that people love to feel like they are helping out and in the past I have always given what I could when I see the red kettles. But now I don't know. I have an issue with a charity group that is so UNCHARIBLE as to tell its members who they can and can not marry. That is a personal choice. But then I did not know til just recently that they were just not a charity group. They are a religion. I thought they were like the red cross or something. So ya they can tell their employees who they can marry but that does not mean I have to still give them my money. There are plenty of other less oppressive charities I can give my money to.
1 person likes this
6 Dec 08
that is the craziest mess i have ever heard. they shouldnt be able to tell you who you can and cant marry. i mean usually if your married you cant work together. i dont think that is right and you would think that rule would make alot of people not join the salvation army. i didnt know that you cant make your self love someone so what happens if there isnt the same number as women as men what do they do just hope another one joins so they might have a chance to get married that is crazy and shouldnt be a rule. that is unconstitutional you would think something could be done about that
@xParanoiax (7005)
• United States
6 Dec 08
Well, this was news to me...but I guess that's because I'm just a volunteer. Volunteers help in the organization's efforts for charity, and follow the rules for the specific thing they're helping with...but aren't considered a part of the organization. (They don't poke into our religious beliefs for this reason, for example. I'm pagan yet I volunteer every year to help raise money for the toys for tots thing for our area, and also the christmas meal benefit they do for some of the poorest who applied for aide) The Salvation Army is really big on rules, and while this chafes me a bit, they do alot of good. So, I guess this means the leader of the Salvation Army will be replaced soon...other than that...