Faith and worship

Faith and Worship

The Salvation Army is an international Christian church worshipping and working in 131 countries and has more than 800 local churches and centres in the UK and Republic of Ireland.

Members of The Salvation Army use many different ways to show God just how much they love Him, this is known as 'worship'. Worship can take place in people's homes, at churches - in fact, anywhere! Worship is used to describe anything that shows affection and admiration to God.

Sunday Worship

Services (meetings) are held every Sunday and a typical congregation will be made up of a wide and diverse mix of people from all backgrounds, ages and walks of life. Church families use Sunday worship to share in fellowship with one another and God in ways that express spiritual creativity, inclusivity and love.

At your local Salvation Army church, their services may include:

  • Traditional hymns
  • Modern worship songs
  • A sermon
  • Children’s story
  • Brass bands
  • Choirs
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Readings
  • Multimedia

The Salvation Army is keen to make church accessible and relevant to everyone. Some churches will hold informal 'cafe-style' meetings where members sit in small groups and enjoy fellowship and praise with refreshments. Other churches may also hold mid-week worship.

There's no need for a uniform - just come along and see what you think.

Worship on the street

If you have never been inside a Salvation Army hall, then you may have heard one of our brass bands marching down the high street or playing carols at Christmas.

Most open-air services include music, bible readings, prayers and a short thought.

We conduct church services on the street and in other public places because we believe worship should not be confined to certain buildings. Not everyone has the time or the confidence to enter a church hall; therefore, we strive to make worship accessible to all. 

Children and worship

Jesus preached of how important children are within the family of God; therefore, we believe children have a lot to offer in Sunday worship.

Aside from children’s choirs and brass bands, young people are encouraged to participate in worship by praying and reading the bible; in fact, in some churches, services throughout the year are led by children and young adults.

Many churches also have Sunday Schools which are separate to the main Sunday service and provide a time for children to worship together and learn more about Jesus.

The Mercy Seat

Unique to The Salvation Army is the Mercy Seat, a consecrated place of prayer located at the front of the hall.

The Mercy Seat is open to anyone at any time, though an invitation is often given for the congregation to use this space during worship.

Prayer is simply a conversation with God, and so the Mercy Seat can be used for a variety of reasons, including personal or communal thanksgiving and reflection. 

Testimony time

Another feature of Salvation Army worship is testimony time.

Often, the congregation is given the opportunity to share their spiritual experiences, maybe something which has challenged or encouraged them during the week.

We believe sharing faith is important because it demonstrates how church congregations are families which are interested in the personal lives of its members. In sharing testimony we reflect on our own spiritual journeys and offer a challenge, word of encouragement or prayer request with our friends who journey with us.

How do I find out more about Jesus?

The Rejesus website explores His life, character, teachings and followers, how He has been quoted and misquoted, written about, worshipped and argued over.

A salvationist family being welcomed at church

Explore faith and belonging

Visit to find out more about our faith and what being a Salvationist means.

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Being a Salvationist

Worship meetings are open to all – there's no need to wear a uniform to participate.

Our history

The Salvation Army has worked for over 150 years, transforming lives all over the UK.

Our mission, vision and values

Learn more about the beliefs and values that drive us to keep helping people in need.