I join with many of you across the country as we mourn the death of His Royal Highness Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh. Prince Philip was a remarkable man who lived a life of service dedicated to his country, to his wife, Queen Elizabeth II and his family.
At eighteen, Prince Philip joined the Royal Navy and served with distinction throughout the Second World War. At the same time, the beginnings of a cherished friendship with Princess Elizabeth began to blossom.
That friendship resulted in a marriage that lasted for over 70 years and has been a source of mutual joy, support and comfort in private moments but equally as they have both navigated a very public life together.
Having become the longest-serving British consort, Prince Philip has been unstinting in his support, leading Her Majesty to famously comment. ‘he has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years.’1
His faith in Jesus Christ was an important part of his life and one which shaped who he was.
For so many in this country and around the world, The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is an enormous part of Prince Philip’s legacy. The award has allowed countless young people to develop and discover skills, which have instilled confidence in them and given them an encounter of working together for the common good.
Prince Philip was patron to hundreds of charitable organisations, covering a wide range of disciplines all of which benefited from his wit and wisdom and his inquisitive mind.
Do join me in praying for members of the Royal Family as they mourn and may God bring them comfort. As we give thanks to God for a life lived to the full, may Prince Philip rest in peace and rise in glory.
The Most Reverend Stephen Cottrell
Archbishop of York
- 1. Speech by Her Majesty The Queen celebrating their Golden Wedding Anniversary.