Chap­lains Re­turn to its His­tor­i­cal Iden­tity

RCN News - - Content -

On Oc­to­ber 16, 2014, the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Chap­lain Branch was re­named the Royal Canadian Chap­lain Ser­vice. This Royal des­ig­na­tion has been re­stored to honor and com­mem­o­rate the Branch’s long and proud his­tory of pro­vid­ing spir­i­tual care and sup­port to CAF op­er­a­tions, its mil­i­tary mem­bers and their fam­i­lies.

The restora­tion of a Royal pre­fix to the CAF Chap­lain Branch was sought to re­con­nect with the her­itage of the for­mer Royal Canadian Army Chap­lain Corps and the chap­lain ser­vices of the pre-uni­fi­ca­tion Royal Canadian Navy and Royal Canadian Air Force.

His Ex­cel­lency the Right Hon. David John­ston, Gover­nor Gen­eral and Com­man­der-in-Chief of Canada, com­mu­ni­cated the ap­proval of th­ese changes by Buck­ing­ham Palace while ad­dress­ing CAF lead­er­ship.

The restora­tion of the Royal des­ig­na­tion to the CAF Chap­lain Branch is an­other step in the process to rec­og­nize tra­di­tional ser­vice and corps iden­ti­ties in the CAF that be­gan in Au­gust 2011, and in com­mem­o­ra­tion of the 100th an­niver­sary of the start of the First World War and the 75th an­niver­sary of the start of the Sec­ond World War.

To date, the restora­tion of his­tor­i­cal names has in­cluded the Royal Canadian Navy, the Canadian Army, the Royal Canadian Air Force, the Royal Canadian Med­i­cal Ser­vice, the Royal Canadian Den­tal Corps, the Royal Canadian Ar­mored Corps, the Royal Canadian Corps of Sig­nals, the Royal Canadian En­gi­neers, and the Royal Canadian Elec­tri­cal and Me­chan­i­cal En­gi­neers.

Both at home and on in­ter­na­tional op­er­a­tions, CAF chap­lains pro­vide com­pre­hen­sive re­li­gious and spir­i­tual sup­port, ad­vice, and care to mil­i­tary com­man­ders, CAF mem­bers and their fam­i­lies. An in­ter­faith team, the Royal Canadian Chap­lain Ser­vice in­cludes rep­re­sen­ta­tion from over twenty dif­fer­ent Chris­tian de­nom­i­na­tions and from the Jewish and Mus­lim faiths.

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