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Commissioner Miriam Gluyas joins senior leaders’ conference

Commissioner Miriam Gluyas (left) caught up with the Australian officers at International Headquarters during the leadership conference in London. (From left) Commissioners Robyn and Wayne Maxwell, Colonel Cheralynne Pethybridge and Major Meaghan Gallagher.



“Over the past week, I have been privileged to be part of the Senior Leaders’ Development Conference at Sunbury Court in London,” said Commissioner Miriam Gluyas, Territorial Commander.


“Developing leaders is a high priority for our General.

Senior leaders at the conference came from all over the world.

“One of the most important parts of the conference, and always a highlight for me, is engaging with leaders from many nations – to share stories, to hear what is happening where they are, to bring ideas to the table, to hear about family, to laugh, to eat, to enjoy.”


The residential component of the conference takes place twice a year at Sunbury Court and is for Salvation Army officers around the world who have been in senior leadership roles for up to 12 months, or who have just been appointed to positions including chief secretaries, territorial commanders, territorial presidents and secretaries of women’s ministries and roles at International Headquarters.


Australian officer Colonel Cheralynne Pethybridge, Secretary for Leadership Development, is instrumental in developing content and organising the conferences. She is supported by Lieut-Colonel Anne-Florence Tursi, Major David Allen and Colonel Kelvin Pethybridge.


“The focus of the conferences is leadership development and skill building, and includes navigating the roles, working with other leaders and Salvation Army governance,” Cheralynne explained, before highlighting the three components of the conference:

Commissioner Miriam's highlights from the conference.

Pre-orientation:  When someone goes into their new role, a zonal leader will brief them and answer any questions within the first two weeks of their appointment.

Online orientation: This five-day training takes place within the first three months of the appointment. It includes spiritual, business, legal and financial responsibilities.

Residential: Skill building is key during this week. Leaders focus on their spiritual roles, how to lead and balance leadership, administration and accountability.


Engaging with senior leaders

“The General, Chief of the Staff and World Secretary of Women’s Ministries visit the conference,” Miriam said. “They share the Word and there are opportunities to engage. There is teaching and vision casting and being open and honest with questions and responses.

Themes such as ‘Who is the real me?’, governance, leadership, balance, resilience, administrative matters and others are all taught and discussed.


“There’s also a visit to International Headquarters, meetings with other leaders in our zones, and an opportunity to learn more about the workings of the Army across the world.”


Guest lecturer for the conference was Professor Peter Shaw, a lay minister in the Church of England, a lay canon, and executive coach who runs interactive workshops focusing on those at high levels of leadership. “‘Mirroring Jesus as leader’ is the basis of his sessions,” Cheralynne shared. “We chose a relevant topic for our group based on making good decisions, leadership in demanding times and balancing ministry and leadership.”


Group work followed the lectures. “This allowed us once again to get to know each other better, and to hear people’s hearts,” said Miriam. “The highlight is always the people, and what a wonderful group they were.


“It was a great time and there is some exciting visioning coming to our mission movement for the worldwide Army. ‘Jesus-centred, Spirit-led, Hope revealed’. We’re on track, but there is so much more to come.”





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