Army Chaplain Inspires Rotarians
At a packed meeting of The Rotary Club of Flint and Holywell held at The Springfield Hotel, Pentre Halkyn, members and guests listened with great interest to a talk given by guest speaker, Major Nathan King, a serving army Chaplin whose home is in Northop.
Major King first of all described how, at the age of only 17, he received his “calling” to enter the ministry, notwithstanding that up to that time, he and his family had little contact with the Church since his baptism. He described to an enthralled audience how he had approached a local Vicar, who provided invaluable advice to the young Nathan as to how best he could pursue his calling.
After studying at University, he eventually entered the Ministry and was ordained, acting as a Curate in a number of parishes in Flintshire and just across the Border into Cheshire.
A further important turning point then occurred in his life when he discussed the work of the Ministry in the British Army with an Army Chaplin who was nearing retirement. Following on from this, Nathan decided that he too should apply to become a Chaplin in the Army, which involved him in further religious training as well as some quite intensive military training.
Nathan explained to his audience that to be an effective Chaplin, it was important for him and all army Chaplins, to experience first hand, the hardships and intensity that soldiers are expected to endure, especially when on active service, and when the bullets are flying. He then described in some detail, his time in Afghanistan, where he served during the recent bloody conflicts, and how he was required to provide both spiritual and mental comfort to serving troops. Many of these soldiers were battle scarred both physically and mentally during one of the most brutal and prolonged actions the British Army were required to face since the Korean and Second World Wars. Nathan described in detail some of the intense battles he and his fellow troops were involved in. He also explained that the role of Chaplin was particularly dangerous as the Taliban had placed a special bounty on the heads of serving priests!
The President of The Rotary Club, Jim Reid, expressed his thanks to Major King on behalf of all who attended. Nathan had spoken some time ago to The Club and his talk had been so interesting and inspirational, that the Club was delighted when they heard he would be able to return, hence the packed room. Pointing to this large number of members and guests, The Club President remarked that it was a long time since he saw a Rotary Audience so captivated by a Guest Speaker and asked Nathan to return for a third time in the not too distant future.