LCANZ pastor Darren Jaensch has been recognised in the Queen’s Birthday 2022 Honours List. The Director General Chaplaincy – Army since December 2017, Pastor Darren has been made a Member (AM) in the Military Division of the Order of Australia for ‘exceptional performance of duty in chaplaincy leadership and development’.

An Australian Army chaplain in various roles since beginning part-time with the Army Reserve in 1998, he accepted a full-time call with the Army two years later. Released by the LCA to represent the church in that mission context, Pastor Darren will be returning to parish ministry in 2023, having accepted a call to Holy Cross Lutheran Church at Belconnen in the Australian Capital Territory.

Pastor Darren described receiving the AM as ‘a very humbling but wonderful affirmation’. ‘The sad part is that our entire Army chaplaincy team provides amazing ministry that contributes to the recognised achievements, but there is only one recipient of the award’, he said.

‘Our Army chaplains are engaged in meaningful human interactions, meeting soldiers (and their families) in the raw realities of their lives and the sacred spaces of their spiritual walk and human existence, most recently in supporting the Australian community through COVID-19 and the floods. All the while, sharing their hardships and dangers. And it is my deep honour to lead them whilst flying the flag for our beloved LCANZ.

‘The affirmation is nice, particularly for my family who bear the cost and are long-suffering, but all glory belongs to God in whom “we live and move and have our being”.’

The citation of his honour reads: ‘Principal Chaplain Jaensch’s exceptional leadership as the Director General Chaplaincy – Army has optimized relevant and effective chaplaincy across Army. His wisdom, persistence and compassion have progressed the recruiting and integration of gender and culturally diverse, full and part-time and multi-faith chaplains’.

The congratulations of the church are offered to Pastor Darren and any other members honoured with awards.

To learn more about what our Army and other Australian Defence Force chaplains do, see the following videos:; and

Pictured above: Brigadier Darren Jaensch stands in the tower of the Australian National Memorial at Villers-Bretonneux in France. Photograph: LSIS Jake Badior. Copyright: Commonwealth of Australia Department of Defence

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