The annual Remembrance Day Service was held at 10 am on Sunday, November 11th at St. Paul’s Anglican Cathedral and was attended by over 370 people.
This year being the centenary of the end of the First World War the Royal British Legion offered a special Thank You to all who served, sacrificed and changed our world.
Our service was focused on this and the 33 people who participated in this conflict and who are remembered on our memorial plaque at the cathedral.
As usual, the Commonwealth countries, whose soldiers, sailors and airmen, travelled great distances from relatively safe home countries, together with those brave volunteers from the community in Brazil who did the same, were well represented at the service along with First World War allies such as France, Belgium and the USA.
We remember the sacrifice made by the thousands of British and Commonwealth service people who have died in the subsequent conflicts that have taken place since the First World War including of course the Second World War and the allied nations from this conflict including Holland, France, Belgium, Brazil (FEB and FAB) and the USA were also represented at the service.
The musical support this year was from the choir of St Nicholas School and helped us to make the service an even more moving service.
We had a collection for the Poppy Appeal and I would like to thank everyone who contributed towards the poppy sales either before the service via the schools, the Brazilian British Centre, remotely from other locations or British organisations and at the service on the day.
The Cathedral technical staff organised the recording of the service and if you did not make it to the service on the day or if you would like to watch it again you can do so via the link below:
Following the service we had the normal reception. The reception was also very well attended and we had a couple of special events:
We organised a special First World War display that was set up for the reception after the Remembrance Day Service. This included personal items connected with some of the people whose names are mentioned on the memorial plaque. One very special item was the 1914 wooden cross of an unknown soldier which has now been donated to the RBL by Bishop Roger Bird.
Adriano S. Baumgartner joined us to talk about the Brazilian Air Force Awards that were made last year to the family of Captain Gordon Fox Rule, DFC, CdG* (Brazilian's Greatest WW1 Ace, about whom Adriano has published a book) and this year to the family of W/Cdr Cosme Lockwood Gomm, DSO, DFC who is remembered on the Second World War memorial plaque at the cathedral. Adriano has been very involved with both these projects and is working on various other projects about the RAF including a biography of W/Cdr Cosme Lockwood Gomm, DSO, and DFC.
We were joined by the Associação dos Ex-combatentes da FEB along with one of their World War 2 veterans and the President of this association explained a little about what they do.
Either side of the weekend we participated in the French Armistice service to remember the centenary of the end of the First World War at the Lycée Pasteur on the 9th of November and a very poignant Remembrance ceremony and wreath laying at St Pauls School on the 12th of November.
Royal British Legion - Sao Paulo Branch