Queen Elizabeth II Royal News

The Queen’s telephone audience with Archbishop of Canterbury

Her Majesty The Queen held a telephone audience with the Archbishop of Canterbury on Tuesday ahead of Easter this weekend. The Queen, who holds the title of Supreme Governor of the Church of England, took part in the call from Windsor Castle where she is currently residing with The Duke of Edinburgh.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Reverend Justin Welby, tweeted a picture of himself and wrote, “It was a great honour to have a telephone audience with Her Majesty The Queen this afternoon. I was able to update her on the work of the Church of England throughout the pandemic and wish her a Happy Easter. May God continue to bless and protect her and her family.”

Justin Welby is the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury and was appointed in November 2012. His confirmation of election ceremony to the See of Canterbury took place at St Paul’s Cathedral in February 2013 and he was enthroned as Archbishop at Canterbury Cathedral on 21st March 2013 – which in the calendar of the Anglican Churches is an observance of Thomas Cranmer.

In pre-COVID times, Her Majesty The Queen would usually spend Maundy Thursday distributing Maundy money to pensioners in a church service to commemorate Jesus washing the feet of the Apostles at the Last Supper. The Maundy Service happens each year on the Thursday before Easter and early on in her reign, The Queen decided that Maundy money should not just be distributed to the people of London and so each year travels to various Cathedrals and Abbeys across the United Kingdom to perform the Maundy ritual.

The 2020 service at St George’s Chapel in Windsor was cancelled because of the first Coronavirus lockdown. Instead, the Maundy money was blessed in the Chapel Royal at St James’s Palace and was posted to recipients alongside a letter from The Queen.

Easter falls on Sunday 4th April 2021.

Photo: Iain Cameron

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