The Mayor’s Chaplain is chosen by the Mayor and is an honorary title. The role of the Chaplain is to offer spiritual guidance to the Mayor as and when required and to assist in organising the civic service, other civic occasions and prayers or suitable thoughts for the occasion at council meetings. The Chaplain is usually seated near to the Mayor at these events.
The Mayor’s Chaplain can also act as a focal point for religious or Faith groups in the area and to advise the Mayor on religious and other matters. The residents of the area will not all be of the same belief and the Mayor’s Chaplain can explain the differences and similarities of belief and practice. Attending a religious or other service of another faith is the outward show that he or/ she is the Mayor of all the people and of the right to worship freely. It is therefore important that the support that the Chaplain gives to the Mayor helps the Mayor to understand and lead all sections of the community.
Father Chris Whelan
I am the priest at St Joseph’s Catholic Church in South Ham. In 2000 I was ordained a Catholic priest for the Diocese of Portsmouth and have served in Fareham, Portchester, Woodley and Aldershot. After moving to Basingstoke in 2017, I have enjoyed meeting new people who have all been friendly and welcoming.
It is a great pleasure to be invited to act as Mayor’s Chaplain for 2018/19. Over the next year I am looking forward to building on the work of previous Chaplains and supporting the Mayor.
Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org