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DEDICATION OF CHURCH
WINDOWS IN MEMORY OF PORTUGUESE SOLDIERS KILLED IN THE FIRST WORLD WAR
The Roman Catholic Church of St James in Twickenham has commissioned a pair of stained glass windows to commemorate the sacrifices of the Portuguese in the First World War.
The two stained glass windows were dedicated by His Excellency Manuel
Lobo Antunes LVO, Ambassador of Portugal and Field Marshal the Lord
Guthrie of Craigiebank GCB LVO OBE DL, on 9th April 2018, to mark the
Centenary Anniversary of the Battle of the Lys.
The nearest window commemorates the humanitarian work of Dom Manuel II, the last King of Portugal, and a member of this Parish from 1913 to 1932, when living in exile at Fulwell Park. At the outbreak of War, The King placed himself at the service of the British Red Cross, and toured hospitals throughout the United Kingdom. Thanks to his efforts, an Orthopaedic Military Hospital was opened in Shepherd’s Bush in 1916. His name is also associated with the Hammersmith Military Hospital and, above all, linked to the adoption of a new orthopaedic treatment method, which had been followed on the continent.
This window depicts the Archangel Raphael, who healed the father of Tobit, surmounted on symbols of the healing work of the King. In the centre of the window is a Caravel, a Portuguese ship developed in the 15th Century, and the cipher of the Anglo-Portuguese Society, to reflect the financial support given by the Members of the Society.
The second window is in honour of the Portuguese who fell in the First World War.
Between 1914 and 1918 more than 100,000 Portuguese Troops went to war. They fought in Africa and in Flanders, suffering nearly 40,000 casualties. Almost 12,000 men died, including Africans from both Angola and Mozambique, serving in its Armed Forces.
When the Battle of the Lys broke out on 9 April 1918, two depleted Portuguese Divisions, wanting in men and officers, had to take on nearly ten German Divisions, spread over three successive lines of attack.
In this window, the Archangel Michael, who drove Lucifer from Heaven, surmounts symbols of the War. The small fleurs de lys, bear several allusions, including the name of the battle itself.
OF SOUP, LOVE & REVOLUTION