The Archdiocese for the Military Services is the largest diocese in the world. It provides the full range of pastoral and spiritual services to Catholics (and their dependents) serving in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard at 220 installations in 29 countries, on ships at sea, and in 172 Veterans Administration hospitals. Altogether, the Military Archdiocese is responsible for ministry to more than 1.4 million people, most of them young and far from home. Catholic chaplains are in short supply and military congregations are by nature transient; typically, military personnel and their families, as well as the chaplains themselves, are transferred or redeployed every two to three years. This constant change places heavy stress on clergy and Catholic communities alike, especially in time of war. The Military Archdiocese receives no government funds and depends on donations.
The Military Archdiocese has:
- Approximately 1.4 million Catholics
- Hundreds of base chapels, hospital chapels, shipboard chapels, etc.
- 789 active priests, on loan from dioceses around the country
PO Box 4469
Washington DC 20017-0469
Did you know?
A chaplain wrote from Fallujah, Iraq, in 2005: “There is no way I can adequately describe how much these [prayer] books are appreciated… [The Marines’] hands, dirtied by war, held these objects of grace…. [They] will be a source of strength long after I leave.”