Mgr, Michael John Mullins, D.C.L., senior Catholic Chaplain to the Forces in the Southern Command, and Vicar-General to the Bishop in Ordinary to the British Army and Royal Air Force, died suddenly last Friday night in the Cambridge Military Hospital at Aldershot. He had been out for a drive with his sister when he suffered a stroke.
Born in 1886, Mgr. Mullins was educated at Douai Abbey School, at St. Edmund's College, and at the Capranica College in Rome, where, in 1909, he won the Pope's gold medal for proficiency in Canon Law. He was ordained for the diocese of Portsmouth in the following year.
During the Great War Mgr. Mullins served, from 1915 until the closing year of the campaign, as a chaplain in France and in Flanders, earning mention in despatches. He began his military connection as a temporary C.F., was promoted to the Third Class in 1925, and to the Second Class in 1931, in which latter year he became a Senior Chaplain under the Southern Command and was appointed V.G. to the Army Bishop. The honour of Domestic Prelate was conferred upon him four years ago.
Added pathos attaches to Mgr. Mullins's death from the fact that it has occurred within a few days of his appointment as successor to Mgr. William Ryan, 0.B.E., at St. Michael's, Stanhope Lines, Aldershot. His centre, previously, had been Tidworth Camp.
At the funeral, which took place on Tuesday last, the celebrant at the Requiem Mass was the Bishop of Portsmouth; assistant priest, the Rev. J. Cochrane, Senior Catholic Army Chaplain. Bishop Dey presided at the Throne; assistant priest, the Rev. M. G. O'Connell, C.M.
In the Sanctuary were Bishop Myers, Bishop King, the Abbot of Douai, the Abbot of Farnborough, Canons Toomey and O'Mahony, the Rector of the Salesian College, Farnborough, the Rev. William H. Purcell, Senior Catholic Chaplain, Royal Navy; the Rev. H. Beauchamp, Senior Chaplain, R.A.F.; Mgr. J. P. Molony, C.F., and many representatives of the clergy, secular and regular, Benedictines, Salesians and White Fathers. The Salesian Fathers provided the choir. The Absolution in the church and at the graveside was performed by Bishop Dey.