Opinion Former Article

Wales Humanists to speak at Welsh National Remembrance Service for the first time

On the centenary of the end of the First World War, a humanist representative will take part and speak at the Welsh National Service of Remembrance. This is the first time humanists have been given equal representation alongside religious groups at the ceremony.
Lorraine Barrett, patron of Humanists UK, humanist celebrant, and former Member of the Welsh Assembly, will give a reading at the ceremony which takes place on the 11 November at the National War Memorial in Cardiff.

Humanists UK and its sections Defence Humanists and Wales Humanists have long called for humanists to be represented at remembrance services across the UK, including the National Service of Remembrance at the Cenotaph in London. Humanist representatives have participated in the National Remembrance Service of Northern Ireland since 2010 and have similarly long been represented alongside other religion and belief groups at the Scottish National Remembrance Service in Edinburgh; in 2017 giving a reflection alongside the Church of Scotland and an Islamic representative.

Lorraine Barrett commented, ‘For many years, the contribution of non-religious people to our armed forces and to the protection of our nation has been overlooked in official services. The decision to include a humanist representative in the Cardiff service, as has been the case in Edinburgh and Belfast for a number of years, is evidence that that contribution is being increasingly acknowledged.’

Chair of Defence Humanists Emily McCullouch commented,‘For non-religious service men and women, veterans, and their families, being able to commemorate those who sacrificed their lives in Service is an important part of their experience of war, and we are pleased that in Wales they now will be represented on an equal footing to their religious comrades.’

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