Pastoral Notes 9th November 2014

“Of the Catholic chaplains and others who served during the First World War, often little is known other than what has been written about them in regimental histories and diaries. They brought to the horrors of war the comfort of faith and the sacraments. Their willingness to empathise with those they served earned sentiments of respect and admiration. In total, 179 chaplains of all denominations, who endured the risks of bringing Christ to those in most immediate danger, succumbed to the violence of the front and died serving the men whose lives they shared. For many there is a Commonwealth gravestone marking their mortal remains. For others there is no marked resting place, and they remain undiscovered in the ground of what was then no-man’s land; that quagmire of dirt, mud and unidentifiable bodies blown apart by barrage after barrage. There they lie until the Resurrection, undisturbed under the green fields, safe from the horrors which took them from life. May they rest in peace”. (Fr Ian A Evans CSF, assistant Chaplain General of the Royal Army Chaplains’ Department)

postcard picture of army chaplain tending British graves in first world war

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