Together with people the world over, we give thanks today for the lifetime of devotion and service exhibited by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, and pray with all those who mourn the loss of this extraordinary woman.
Queen Elizabeth was more than a monarch. Through 70 years of service to her God and to her people, Queen Elizabeth embodied an unrivaled sense of duty, devotion and fidelity. Across seven decades of tumultuous change, she was a model of stability, and carried her nation in her heart with grace and dignity. We mourn the passage of all that she represents; she was an icon of honor, duty and service.
Her Majesty had deep and abiding faith in God, and we celebrate the many ways that she reflected what the Scriptures describe as the fingerprints of the Holy Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
As she said just last month in a message to Anglican bishops gathered in Canterbury, “Throughout my life, the message and teachings of Christ have been my guide and in them I find hope. It is my heartfelt prayer that you will continue to be sustained by your faith in times of trial and encouraged by hope at times of despair.”
When this Cathedral dedicated the War Memorial Chapel to honor the sacrifices of World War II, Her Majesty was with us for the dedication. She returned in 1976 to witness the completion of the nave inside this great American house of prayer for all people. Across her remarkable life, Queen Elizabeth visited this Cathedral four times, and we cherish our connections to our brothers and sisters who now mourn her passing throughout her beloved Anglican Communion.
Our hearts are linked across the oceans with the people of the United Kingdom, and our prayers are with her son, Charles, as he assumes the weighty responsibilities of the throne.
Remember thy servant, Queen Elizabeth II, O Lord, according to the favor which thou bearest unto thy people, and grant that increasing in knowledge and love of thee, she may go from strength to strength, in the life of perfect service in thy heavenly kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, ever one God, world without end. Amen.
The Right Rev. Mariann Edgar Budde
Bishop, Episcopal Diocese of Washington
The Very Rev. Randolph Marshall Hollerith
Dean, Washington National Cathedral