Thursday, November 10, 2011

Jeep altar at WWII mass service

The Willys MB Jeep 4x4 was often used by chaplains in World War II as an altar. This image from the U.S. Navy Seabee Museum shows Seabees of the 111th Naval Construction Batallion giving thanks after the D-Day invasion in Normandy, France. Navy Chaplains have served around the world with Seabee battalions since their inception in 1942. Chaplains prayed and conducted regular services, using any available area including a ships deck, an apple orchard, a hand-cut hole in a Pacific-island jungle or a makeshift tent for a church. They will use a Jeep 4x4, packing case or ammunition box for an altar, or a helmet for a yarmulke, the top of a mess kit for a paten or a canteen cup for a chalice.

Date: June 1944
Creator/Photographer: 111th Naval Construction Battalion
Collection: 111th Naval Construction Battalion
Rights Info: No known restrictions on image.
Repository: U.S. Navy Seabee Museum, Collections Department, Port Hueneme, CA, Naval History and Heritage Command,