Queen's funeral will be 'glorious' as she did not want a 'long, boring' event, former Archbishop reveals
LONDON, ENGLAND: Queen Elizabeth II, who died on September 8 at the age of 96, will be laid to rest on Monday, September 19 in an hour-long service. Shedding light on the same, the former Archbishop of York John Sentamu revealed in an interview that the Queen told him earlier that she did not want a long and boring funeral service.
In an interview with BBC's ‘Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg’, John Sentamu, who served as Archbishop of York from 2005 to 2020, also revealed that he has been involved in the Queen's funeral service for the last 17 years. The former Archbishop also shared that the Queen penned him a letter four weeks after Prince Philip's funeral thanking him for his support. Queen Elizabeth II was married to Prince Philip for 73 years. According to BBC, close to 500 world leaders and dignitaries from the UK and around the world are expected to attend the ceremony.
In the interview, the former Archbishop stated, “The Queen does not and did not want what you call long, boring services. You're not going to find boredom, but you're going to be lifted to glory as you hear the service.”
He added, “What you're going to expect is the best of funeral services, the prayer book service, the words which were an inspiration to Shakespeare. You are going to hear this wonderful English at its best,” as reported by NZ Herald. Sentamu further shared, “Also you're going to hear angelic voices of the Choir of the Abbey plus the Chapels Royal- voices that are singing to the glory of God." He also revealed that the funeral service will be “heart-warming."
The retired Anglican bishop, who is said to have first seen plans for the Queen's funeral back in 2005, shared, “The hearts and people's cockles will be warmed and at the same time, there will be a moment of saying: this is a funeral service that is glorious in its setting.” The Queen’s funeral might draw 2000 attendees at Westminster Abbey in London. The funeral will also be televised, with billions of people expected to tune into the service.
According to The Insider, John Sentamu said the Queen wrote him a letter four weeks after Prince Philip’s funeral. “The Queen wrote me a most wonderful letter four weeks after the burial of Prince Philip, thanking me for the flowers, the prayers, and then ended by saying: 'When you are grieving someone you deeply love, it isn't easy when you have to do it in public’” said the former Archbishop concluding, “So my thoughts will be to the new King and the whole royal family. They are grieving publicly."