Havre Daily News
The couple who directs the Salvation Army's operations in Havre are being transferred to Idaho. The Salvation Army's church will close but the store and charitable functions in Havre will continue, a spokeswoman for the organization said.
The Salvation Army's Northwest Division has no immediate plans to replace Ralph and Peggy Guthrie, who are relocating to Lewiston on Aug. 28, said Shanti Hahler, community relations director for the division.
Hahler said she didn't know when a new officer would be found.
"There's a shortage of Salvation Army officers. So that's why they're taking it one step at a time," Ralph Guthrie said.
He said the current managers of the thrift store and emergency services will keep those operations going.
Immanuel Baptist Church will continue to operate the Feed my Sheep soup kitchen, which is in a building owned by the Salvation Army.
Guthrie declined to say how many people attended the Salvation Army church.
The Guthries have been in Havre for five years after serving at assistant administrators at the Salvation Army in Great Falls.
"The officer (in Lewiston) had a family emergency and headquarters deemed it necessary to transfer us there to resume leadership," Guthrie said.
Hahler said the Guthries' move is a promotion.
Peggy Guthrie said she and her husband will be in charge of the Salvation Army thrift store and emergency services, serve as pastors of the church and operate a soup kitchen. Lewiston has about 30,000 people.
"We will go where God takes us. But yet we know our presence is needed in Lewiston," Ralph Guthrie said. "We knew that someday that phone call would come. We love Havre."
Peggy Guthrie added, "We love it here. It's so hard to say goodbye to our friends and the town. But who are we to say no?"
Maj. Ross Hailes of the Salvation Army's Northwest Division in Seattle will speak Aug. 21 at 11 a.m. for a farewell Sunday service at Havre's Salvation Army church.