Canadian Chaplain Service - Printed Shoulder Title - JM Militaria

Canadian Chaplain Service - Printed Shoulder Title

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This is a very rare British made canvas/printed shoulder title to 'Canadian Chaplain Service'. The shoulder title is in unissued condition, shows some glue on the backside. One of the more difficult to find shoulder title!

At the outbreak of hostilities between the British Commonwealth and Hitler’s Germany, the Canadian Military was scrambling to rebuild itself from the interwar era of complacency and neglect. There was no chaplain service and as reactivated units were being rushed to Europe, the chaplains of the First War were sent as experienced men. It soon became apparent that younger men would be needed to serve in the active regiments and by the time of the invasion of NW Europe many younger clergy had been recruited and placed into the field. Canadian practice was to post one chaplain per battalion. Within a brigade, the denominational needs of the men were met by having chaplains of the member battalions share their services. Thus, a Roman Catholic could attend Mass with the Roman Priest of a neighboring battalion as a member of the Church of Canada (Anglican) could attend the Mass with another battalion. In Canada, members of the Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian (some) and Congregationalist churches came together to form the Union Church of Canada and they supplied chaplains as well. In any case, the chaplain of a battalion served the needs of all members under his charge. It is of some import to note that the Government created two parallel chaplain departments, one Roman Catholic and one Protestant (Jewish faith needs were assigned to the Protestant branch). As most chaplains were authorized a jeep or tilly, their personal combat gear would have been much like most officers without the small arms. Besides the items of religious use, the chaplains would also have carried notebooks and maps for recording where internments had taken place along with making notes for use later on when writing letters to those back home. Depressingly in most chaplains’ eyes was the issuance of a finger printing kit for obtaining prints from unknown or unidentifiable remains. In the end, such information might help identify someone and provide the means to help settle some bereaved families back home of what happened to their loved one. 

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