Saturday, 15 May 2021

Queen will have ‘extraordinary courage’ in ‘moment of anguish’ at Phil’s funeral

The Queen will show "extraordinary courage" in her grief as she attends the funeral of her late husband, the Duke of Edinburgh.

The archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby said that Her Majesty may behave “with extraordinary dignity and extraordinary courage” but the funeral of Prince Philip will be a moment of anguish for her.

The monarch, who buries her husband of 73 years at 3 pm today, is expected to sit alone during the service.

Welby said she would require the support of the nation and asked that people don't judge her "external appearances" through the course of the day.

He told the BBC: “She is saying farewell to someone to whom she was married for 73 years. I think that must be a very, very profound thing in anybody’s life.

"I hope the whole nation if they believe in that, they pray for her, and if they don’t, they sympathise in their hearts, offer their condolences to her, and they hope for her to find strength in what must be an anguished moment.

“She is the Queen. She will behave with the extraordinary dignity and extraordinary courage that she always does.”

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The deeply religious service will have no sermon of eulogy to Prince Philip – but they are not commonly used in Royal funerals anyway.

The service will feature readings and music chosen by Prince Philip, and the lack of sermon is at his request.

Benjamin Britten’s Jubilate in C will be sung, a piece specially commissioned by Philip for the St George’s chapel choir.

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It will also feature psalm 104, which Philip many years ago requested be set to music by William Lovelady, and which was first sung in honour of his 75th birthday.

The hymn Eternal Father, Strong to Save reflects his career in the Royal Navy, as it is traditionally associated with seafarers and the maritime armed services.

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