Meet the Peddles
For the first time ever, a Newfoundlander will hold the second highest post of the Salvation Army.
Earlier this year, Commissioner Brian Peddle, originally from Norman’s Cove, was appointed chief of the staff for the organization. He reports directly to General Andre Cox.
His wife, Commissioner Rosalie Peddle — nee Rowe —was also given a prestigious appointment. She will take on the role of World Secretary for Women’s Ministries. Rosalie is from Carbonear.
For almost four decades, the couple has taken on numerous roles throughout the organization, with Brian beginning in Hant’s Harbour and Rosalie in Deadman’s Bay. They worked together at the Adam’s Avenue church in St. John’s for eight years.
Over the past decade, they have spent much more time travelling. They had been appointed to some higher positions, including territorial leaders of Canada and Bermuda.
Now living in the United Kingdom, the couple will take on their new roles officially this November.
“I’m not sure anyone that’s a Salvation Army officer aspires to lead the organization at this level. For us I think we were surprised,” Brian explained, speaking over the phone from England.
Both are high-ranking positions in the organization, which will give them a lot of responsibility world- wide. That is something that both entices them and keeps them humble.
“We’re somewhat honoured at one point, but overwhelmed with the responsibility at another point,” Brian said.
But that doesn’t mean they’re not up to the challenge.
In previous positions held by each of them, they travelled to New Zealand, Africa and Singapore, among other countries. They never see travel as a hinderance. In fact, they embrace it.
“We’ve had the opportunity to travel to these places, we’ve had the opportunity to connect with people of different coloured culture and language and not feel it’s a barrier to friendship and collegial ex-
perience,” Brian noted.
The new roles
Brian is currently the international secretary for the Americas and the Caribbean.
There have been 26 chief of the staff appointments to date, and only one other has been Canadian. Brian is quite excited that he can say he’s the first Newfoundlander.
One of his responsibilities will be to form a high council to elect a new general when the position becomes vacant. He also attends events on behalf of the general if he can not go.
He will continue to travel the world and oversee operations in all 127 countries the Army is found in.
The general announced the appointment in July through a news release.
“It is of vital importance for the General of The Salvation Army to be supported in ministry and leadership by a trusted colleague who can effectively and efficiently fulfill the role of the chief of the staff,” the news release said.
As the wife of the second in command, Rosalie will attend events with her husband, but having her own post means she will be doing a lot of work on her own.
“I’m expected as well to play a significant role in the work of the international headquarters … particularly in the area of women’s issues and women,” she said. “Looking at social justice, which will be a big issue for around the world because, you know that women are different in every country and place around out global world. So that will be very interesting.”
Several of the issues that she will face include women’s issues with social and spiritual justice, human trafficking, education and health issues. The Army will partner with other organizations to help combat the problems surrounding these topics.
True to their roots
Even though the Peddles have spent a lot of time away from Newfoundland, they will always consider themselves Newfoundlanders first.
“The challenge is being away from family — our two girls and our ( five) grandkids live in Canada,” said Rosalie. “We do keep close contact with them on Facetime, and we never miss the big milestones.”
But travelling abroad is an important part of their jobs, something they are pleased about.
“I’ve come a long way from the high school in Norman’s Cove,” Brian laughed. “Our world view has expanded incredibly.”
What they are excited about now is continuing their work with the Army, doing public speaking engagements all around the world, but Newfoundland will always weigh on their minds.
“We’re very proud Newfoundlanders, and we still appreciate Purity crackers,” Brian laughed.
Brian (left) and Rosalie Peddle have been appointed to prestigious posts within the Salvation Army and will begin serving those roles in November.