Retired General Bramwell H. Tillsley is promoted to Glory


Aug. 18, 1931–Nov. 2, 2019

General Bramwell H. Tillsley (Ret.), The Salvation Army’s 14th international leader, was promoted to Glory on November 2 from his home at the Army’s Meighen Retirement Residence in Toronto.

Bramwell Tillsley was born Aug. 18, 1931, in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada, to Salvationists Harold and Doris Tillsley, who had immigrated to Canada from England just a few years before. He accepted Christ at a young age, and became actively involved at Kitchener Citadel as a junior soldier, corps cadet, bandsman and cornet soloist. 

In 1953, Tililsley married Maude Pitcher, and they entered the Toronto College for Officer Training in 1955 as cadets in the Sword Bearers Session. In 1956, they were commissioned and appointed corps officers in Windsor, Nova Scotia, followed by Oakville, Ontario. They served for the next six years at the Toronto training college before becoming divisional youth officers in Saskatchewan and corps officers at North Toronto Citadel in 1966. In 1969, the Tillsleys returned to the Toronto training college with Bramwell Tillsley as education officer. He went on to become training principal, first at the training college in St John’s, Newfoundland, and then in the USA Eastern Territory. 

The couple returned to Newfoundland in 1977, with Bramwell Tillsley as provincial commander; the position of divisional commander in the Metro Toronto Division followed. Tillsley became principal of the international training college in London in 1981, chief secretary of the USA Southern Territory in 1985 and Australia Southern territorial commander in 1989, taking the rank of commissioner. In 1991, Commissioner Tillsley was appointed as Chief of the Staff at International Headquarters. 

Bramwell Tillsley was elected 14th General of The Salvation Army in 1993, an office he held until May 1994. In this role, he and his wife traveled the world, nurturing Salvationists in their faith and highlighting the work of The Salvation Army.

Bramwell Tillsley received a bachelor of arts degree in philosophy from the University of Western Ontario and furthered his studies at Wycliffe College in Toronto. He was a gifted writer and communicator who authored many books on biblical studies and holiness, including “Life in the Spirit,” “This Mind in You” and “Manpower for the Master.”  

General Tillsley was predeceased by his wife, Maude, who was promoted to Glory in 2014.

Survivors include the General’s sister, Lt. Colonel Audrey Wilder, and his children and their families: Rev. Dr. Barbara Robinson, Commissioner Mark Tillsley and John Tillsley.

The current international leader of The Salvation Army, General Brian Peddle, writes: “As a Canadian officer, I have experienced the impact of General Tillsley’s leadership for more than four decades. I have valued his writings and enjoyed his preaching and teaching, while noting his Christian character.

“Servant of God, well done!” 


Based on an announcement from the Office of the Chief of the Staff

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