Today we join with the whole nation and friends across the world in expressing our sorrow at the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Amidst the pain and grief we also lift prayers of thanksgiving for her life, service and example to our nation and to the world.

Acting Bishop of Winchester, The Rt Revd Debbie Sellin said:

“My thoughts and prayers are with the Royal Family as, with many, we mourn the death of Her Majesty, the Queen. Queen Elizabeth’s unswerving faith and commitment to Christ were at the very foundations of her reign, and she was an example to us all. During her reign, our nation experienced a period of unprecedented global change and development, and through it all, she served with grace and dignity. This nation has been blessed to have her as our Queen and, though we mourn alongside her family, we also rejoice in the hope of resurrection through the Lord she served.”

Queen Elizabeth’s Life and Reign

Elizabeth II, born Elizabeth Alexandria Mary on April 21st, 1926, was the eldest daughter of George VI. She became Queen of the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth realms when her father died on February 6th, 1952.

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Through her marriage to HRH Prince Philip she had four children – Charles, Prince of Wales; Anne, Princess Royal; Prince Andrew, Duke of York; and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex – as well as eight grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.

During her reign she was advisor and confidante to 15 Prime Ministers, including Winston Churchill, made over 100 state visits all over the world, and has been the longest-serving British monarch in modern history. She became patron of more than 600 charities and organisations, and awarded for 400,000 honours.

She exemplified a life of sacrifice and service, attributing her faith in Jesus Christ, and his life and teaching, as the source and motivation for her long years of service.

“I know just how much I rely on my faith to guide me through the good times and the bad. Each day is a new beginning. I know that the only way to live my life is to try to do what is right, to take the long view, to give of my best in all that the day brings, and to put my trust in God … I draw strength from the message of hope in the Christian gospel.”

Queen Elizabeth II, Christmas 2002

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