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World War I - 100 years on


The Diocese of Southwark commemorates
the First World War

As we approach the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War, parishes and chaplaincies across the Diocese are commemorating the War in a diverse number of ways – with special remembrance services, walks to places of significant interest, concerts, exhibitions, articles for local newsletters, family activity days.

The Church of England has a dedicated website on the Church in World War One which you can find here. For those of you planning services, you may find it helpful to have a look at some of the prayers and readings suggested on this website. They can be found here.

If you are connected to a school, or have a school in your parish, why not find out what they have planned and ask how the church can support our schools as they seek to commemorate the war.

We will be commemorating by name in the daily prayers at the Cathedral all those from this Diocese who died serving during the First World War. (Please send the names of those from your parish who died to Ann Lynes)

We want to capture the different ways in which we as a Diocese are collectively commemorating the First World War, please send us your pictures and accounts of how you and your community are choosing to remember and reflect on WWI.

Southwark WWI names

Throughout the next four years the Day Chaplains at the Cathedral will be reading out names of those who died during the First World War and who are linked to parishes in the Diocese of Southwark. The names will be read out on the half-hour, hourly during the course of the day.

The names are also being sent to parishes to include with their daily prayers from the Diocesan Prayer Calendar.

How is your parish commemorating the First World War

Please consider how your congregation and parish will commemorate the First World War and tell us your plans! Ideas you might consider:

  • What dates are of significance for your local community?
  • Other than Remembrance Day services, how might your community commemorate the War?
  • What is the story behind your local war memorials?
  • Are there opportunities for partnership with other local civic organisations or other religious communities?
  • Were there clergy from your parish who went to serve in as army chaplains? Can you find out anything about their stories?

Key Dates

1 July 2016                             Battle of Somme
July - Oct 2017                       3rd Battle of Ypres (Passchendaele)

2018-2019 Victory                thanksgiving and peace
11 November 2018                  Armistice Day

Further resources

There are many other sources of information and resources for use in the commemoration of the centenary of the First World War.


  • The Revd Gary Jenkins, Vicar of Bermondsey, St James & St Anne has posted on his blog about Cpl Frederick Holmes, a local man who was awarded the VC in WWI.
  • To mark the commemorations of the WWI, the Lancelot Andrewes Awards have asked different participating countries to produce a series of creative journals written by the youth of today (16-35). The  main premise is that along with nearly 10 million young combatants, so too was lost nearly 10 million youthful imaginations. Reliving and rethinking the world that they went through will provide an opportunity for these participants and readers to reflect upon today's world.
  • Barnabas in Schools (part of BRF) have produced ‘What price peace?‘, A teaching resource for primary schools exploring issues of war and peace
  • There is useful information on the Churches Together in England website on how local groups of churches can start thinking / praying / preparing to remember World War 1. The document includes information and 10 suggestions for follow up.
  • The Government has a website dedicated to the First World War Centenary here. It contains a great deal of useful information including a section on 'How you can get involved' and a downloadable First World War Centenary Toolkit for Local Communities.
  • HOPE 2014 - HOPE and HOPE’s partners have prepared 'Greater Love' - resources to help churches to mark the centenary of World War 1 at the heart of local communities.
  • The Quakers have published resources on their website about Quaker involvement in and resistance to the First World War:
    Quakers: working for peace on the centenary of World War I
  • highlights centenary events and resources from across the globe.
  • Westminster Abbey - First World War events
  • Coventry Cathedral - Litany of Reconciliation