Yesterday Her Majesty The Queen and member of the Royal Army Chaplains Department gathered at the Guard’s Chapel in London. To mark the centenary of when His Majesty King George V bestowed the Prefix ‘Royal’ on the then Army Chaplains’ Department in recognition of its outstanding service and sacrifice during the First World War.
For centuries, the Royal Army Chaplains’ Department (RAChD) has ministered to soldiers and their families in times of war and peace. Chaplains are honoured to provide spiritual support, pastoral care, and moral guidance to all, irrespective of religion or belief.
The Centenary Service reflected upon the sacrifice and service of those chaplains who rose to the challenges of the great conflicts that have beset our nation, those who made the ultimate sacrifice, those that continue to support soldiers on operations today but also, those who have simply been there when a soldier has asked ‘Padre have you got a minute…?’
During the service Bishop Paul had the privilege to preach to Her Majesty and those gathered in the Chapel. During his homily he spoke of the great history of the RAChD, of the qualities of what it takes to be an Army Chaplain and of the future of the Chaplains Department.
The service culminated in an Act of Dedication: During which the Chaplain-General asked all serving RAChD Chaplains to reaffirm their commitment before God and to rededicate themselves to the Service of soldiers in the presence of their Royal Patron and the Deputy Chief of the General Staff.