Queen Elizabeth II, head of the Church of England, thanked BBC’s long-running TV series “Songs of Praise,” which celebrated nearly 3,000 episodes on its 60th anniversary Sunday, for presenting Christianity as a “living faith.”
“For 60 years, Songs of Praise has drawn together congregations and BBC viewers throughout the United Kingdom in collective worship,” the queen said in a message for a special episode of the show Sunday, The Telegraph reported.
“During that time, the program has shown Christianity as a living faith not only through hymns and worship songs, but also by featuring the many people who have put their faith at the center of their lives,” the 95-year-old queen continued.
“I congratulate ‘Songs of Praise’ and all those involved in the program on its 60th anniversary,” she added.
Aled Jones, who has been a “Songs of Praise” presenter for over 20 years, called it “one of the biggest joys of my life.”
“It is an honor to be able to share uplifting stories of faith with our dear audience and to gladden hearts with music that means the world to me. Here’s to a future filled with wonderful ‘Songs of Praise!’” Jones was quoted as saying.
On Saturday morning, while opening the new session of the Scottish Parliament at Holyrood, the queen spoke publicly about the Duke of Edinburgh for the first time since his death in April, The Sunday Times reported.
“I have spoken before of my deep and abiding affection for this wonderful country, and of the many happy memories Prince Philip and I always held of our time here,” she was quoted as saying. “It is often said that it is the people that make a place, and there are few places where this is truer than in Scotland, as we have seen in recent times.”
A church leader close to the late Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, revealed in a media interview back in April that he had “persuaded” the queen, his wife, to talk more about her Christian faith ahead of her Christmas broadcast in 2000.
From my post PRINCE PHILIP’S FINEST HOUR:
Prince Philip wanted his funeral service to be a testimony to His Triune God. There was no eulogy. He wanted the total focus to be on His God and on all three persons of the Trinity. This he did by his choice of Scriptures that were read. He also wanted all to know, particularly his family and friends, that he had total confidence his eternity was in the hands of the God he wanted to be made known through the funeral service he had planned.