Catalogue description RAF Chaplaincy Board: Baptism, Marriage and Burial Registers

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Details of AIR 82
Reference: AIR 82
Title: RAF Chaplaincy Board: Baptism, Marriage and Burial Registers

This series comprises a miscellaneous collection of registers of baptisms, confirmations, burials, and marriage (including banns) which were kept at various RAF stations in the British Isles and overseas.

Date: 1890-2014
Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record(s)
Language: English

Royal Air Force, 1918-

Physical description: 571 volume(s)
Access conditions: Open unless otherwise stated
Immediate source of acquisition:

From 2013 Ministry of Defence

Accruals: Series is accruing.
Administrative / biographical background:

In May 1918 The Reverend H D L Veiner was appointed to establish a Chaplains Department for the RAF, this was within weeks of the RAF itself being created on 1 April 1918. By 1919 it consisted of 21 Church of England commissioned chaplains and 14 'other denomination' chaplains.

By the mid 1930s there were chaplaincies in Egypt, Aden, Palestine and Transjordan, Iraq, India and Signapore. Smaller RAF units in the UK were cared for by Officiating chaplains from the local community, whilst larger units were covered by commissioned chaplains operating in teams.

At the start of World War Two the Chaplains Branch was deployed across the world. Over 1000 chaplains served during the war: several were prisoners of war in Europe and the Far East, and some lost their lives during active service.

In August 1990 the RAF Chaplains deployed with the RAF as Iraq invaded Kuwait. They were seen as an essential part of any deploying force and throughout the 1990s the RAF Chaplains served in all operational theatres.

The RAF Chaplains' Board continues to be a presence within the RAF. Its motto is Ministrare Non Ministrari (To Serve, not to be Served). RAF Chaplains are at the heart of their community, responsible for the spiritual welfare of all, irrespective of rank or religious background. Chaplains are recruited from the main Christian Denominations, and their ministry of prayer, presence, and proclamation is lived out daily on RAF bases at home, overseas and in areas of conflict.

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