I am researching an American Anglican priest (now dead) who was apparently made a Royal Chaplain in 1997 by Queen Elizabeth. His name was the Rev. Kevin S. Dunn. He was born in Belfast but spent much of his life in the U.S. Can anyone tell me how I can confirm that he was in fact made a Royal Chaplain? Can anyone tell me what exactly that means? I'd appreciate it.
Royal Chaplains are part of the Ecclesiastical Household and part of the Royal Household of the Queen. There are two separate households.. one in Scotland and one in England.
Their duty is to serve the spiritual needs of their sovereign wherever they are called upon to do so, but they generally have some other ministerial position outside the Royal Household that pays a salary, since being a Royal Chaplain is not a paid position within the Court.
The Church of England comprises the College of Chaplains, and the associated Chapel Royal, the Royal Almonry Office, various Domestic Chaplains and service Chaplains.
Queen Elizabeth II has 36 Anglican chaplains, in addition to chaplains extraordinary and honorary chaplains appointed to minister to her.
Your Reverend Dunn could have been any one of these 36 Chaplains, or could have been an honorary chaplain or chaplain extraordinary.
So far, I have not found a list of appointments for 1997, but I will post it here if I find it.. However, if you know the area where Reverend Dunn ministered, you may wish to contact the Diocese he was closest to in America. They should be able to answer your question, as they would know if he had been appointed a Royal Chaplain.
I have linked the addresses and contact information for the American Anglican Churches below:
If you know specifically the church he served, you can click on "Parishes" at the above link and it will give you the address and contact information of specific churches by state, where you may get someone who actually knew him and could give you the information you're looking for.
Incidentally, if this gentleman is the same Kevin S. Dunn that was born on 3 November 1931 and died on 11 March 2005, his last residence was listed as Alhambra, Los Angeles Co. CA, according to Social Security records. And the closest Anglican church to that location appears to be St. Luke's Anglican Church in Glendale, CA.
Hope this helps you in your research.
Thank you for your informative response. The person I am researching is the Kevin S. Dunn that you mentioned. I have already contacted the diocese where he mostly worked (Episcopal Diocese in Los Angeles) and they have no real information on him. His surviving friends and associates have some information but it is all hearsay and not consistent. He apparently attended Kings College, Cambridge in the early 1950s as a choral scholar and claimed to have sung at Queen Elizabeth's coronation. He further claimed that in 1997 he and five other King's College Chapel Choir choristers were all named Royal Chaplains and invested by the Queen with black and red vestments. At that time, he was largely retired, although a few years earlier he had been a priest in Limerick, Ireland for three years. I assume that any appointment as Royal Chaplain would be entirely honorary. It just seems to me to be odd to appoint somebody as a Royal Chaplain because of their prior membership in a choir.
History of Royal Chaplains
Is there any way of finding information for Royal Chaplains?
I wish to find information for a John Huested, 1510-1583, who died on the Isle of Wight. His death register says that he served as a chaplain to Queen Elizabeth I. That's all the information that we have.
If there is any further information available, parentage in particular, it would be greatly appreciated.
J. Scott Husted
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