Smiling Queen stands without walking stick as she is presented with Canterbury Cross by Justin Welby

The Queen was pictured smiling and standing without her walking stick today as she was awarded a special ‘Canterbury Cross’ by Justin Welby after she was forced to miss her thanksgiving service due to Covid.

The Archbishop of Canterbury had been due to take the Service of Thanksgiving at St. Paul’s Cathedral as part of the Platinum Jubilee weekend, but had to pull out when he was struck down with the disease.

Today they finally got the chance to congratulate Her Majesty face-to-face, as part of a meeting with Her Majesty at Windsor Castle, in which they praised her ‘unstinting’ service to the Church of England.

Her Majesty, who has recently faced mobility issues at the age of 96, was pictured smiling at he gave her a special citation to mark her Platinum Jubilee.

In the audience the Most Rev Welby gave the Queen the small silver cross, inspired by a 9th century Saxon brooch and incorporating a triquetra pattern, as a ‘heartfelt symbol’ of the church’s ‘love, loyalty and affection’.

The Queen was gifted a special 'Canterbury Cross' by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, at Windsor Castle earlier today

The Queen was gifted a special ‘Canterbury Cross’ by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, at Windsor Castle earlier today

The monarch shook hands with the archbishop, who wore purple clerical robes, as he entered the Oak Room sitting room in the Berkshire castle

The monarch shook hands with the archbishop, who wore purple clerical robes, as he entered the Oak Room sitting room in the Berkshire castle

The Queen, who has recently dealt with mobility issues, was pictured standing without her walking stick during the meeting at Windsor Castle today

The Queen, who has recently dealt with mobility issues, was pictured standing without her walking stick during the meeting at Windsor Castle today

The Canterbury Cross was specially crafted for its royal recipient with platinum inserts in recognition of her milestone 70 years on the throne

The Canterbury Cross was specially crafted for its royal recipient with platinum inserts in recognition of her milestone 70 years on the throne

Her Majesty was also given a citation by the Archbishop of Canterbury in which he praised her 'unstinting service' to the Church of England

Her Majesty was also given a citation by the Archbishop of Canterbury in which he praised her ‘unstinting service’ to the Church of England

What is the Canterbury Cross?

The Canterbury Cross is presented each year as part of the annual Lambeth Awards to a small number of recipients who have shown outstanding service to the church.

Previous winners of the cross include former judge’s Sir Mark Hedley and Sir John Mummery, former MP Peter Bruinvels, journalist Sir Andreas Smith and retired political scientist and academic Philip Giddings.

The cross’s design is inspired by a Saxon brooch which was found in Canterbury in 1867 and dates from around 850AD.

It incorporates the motif of a triquetra pattern: a three-cornered knot, symbolizing the Christian Trinity, on each of its four curved arms.

The tips of the arms suggest arcs of a single circle, giving the overall effect of a round wheel.

The calligraphic citation was produced by Margot Riordan-Eva, Lambeth Palace’s calligrapher, who was taught calligraphy by Benedictine nuns at school.

The Queen, wearing her glasses and dressed in a cream dress decorated with a pattern of large pink flowers, was photographed standing as she was shown the cross.

The monarch shook hands with the archbishop, who wore purple clerical robes, as they entered the Oak Room sitting room in the Berkshire castle.

Presented in a vivid red box and attached to a blue ribbon, the cross was specially crafted for its royal recipient with platinum inserts in recognition of her milestone 70 years on the throne.

The Queen, who has a deep Christian faith, is the Supreme Governor of the Church of England and the Defender of the Faith.

In the citation for the cross, which was also given to the Queen as a framed piece of calligraphy, the archbishop praised the monarch and hailed ‘her care for the unity of her people and the welfare of the least fortunate’ as a ‘constant inspiration to the whole church ‘.

The Queen’s life was ‘an example of a Christian life well led,’ they said.

The citation read: ‘Throughout her reign, Her Majesty has upheld both the Christian religion and the Church of England in her role as Defender of the Faith and Supreme Governor of the Church of England.

‘Whether in the formality of the opening sessions of the General Synod or the more intimate context of her personal addresses to the nation and the Commonwealth at Christmas, Her Majesty has made manifest her own deep faith and its relevance to all that she undertakes.

‘Her subtle understanding of the changing position of the Established Church in England has sustained and encouraged laity and clergy alike.

‘Her care for the unity of her people and the welfare of the least fortunate have been a constant inspiration to the whole Church. Hers is an example of the Christian life well led.

‘This presentation of the Canterbury Cross is a heartfelt symbol of the love, loyalty and affection in which the Church of England holds Her Majesty and it represents the recognition and gratitude of her whole Church for her seventy years of unstinting service. God Save The Queen! ‘

The Queen, who has recently dealt with mobility issues, was pictured standing without her walking stick during the meeting at Windsor Castle today

The Queen, who has recently dealt with mobility issues, was pictured standing without her walking stick during the meeting at Windsor Castle today

Archbishop Welby presented Her Majesty with the 'Canterbury Cross' to commemorate her Platinum Jubilee and 70 years of service to the church

Archbishop Welby presented Her Majesty with the ‘Canterbury Cross’ to commemorate her Platinum Jubilee and 70 years of service to the church

The Queen had a busy start to June as the nation celebrated her anniversary during a four-day weekend of festivities.

These included a special Trooping the Color with hundreds of soldiers marching from the Horse Guard Parade to Buckingham Palace, a special flyover by the Red Arrows and other military planes, as well as a special concert in honor of Her Majesty.

Among these was a Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral in London, which saw members of the Royal Family and others congregate to express their thanks for the Queen’s 70-year reign.

However, Her Majesty herself did not attend after experiencing ‘some discomfort’ during the previous days festivities. She would also miss the Epsom Derby the next day, before making an appearance at the Platinum Jubilee Pageant on the final day of celebrations.

The Service of Thanksgiving was supposed to be taken by the Archbishop of Canterbury, but a combination of Covid and pneumonia left him unable to do so.

Instead of the Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, took it in his place and praised Her Majesty for her ‘staunch constancy and a steadfast consistency; a faithfulness to God, an obedience to a vocation that is a bedrock of her life ‘.

The Queen was last seen on the balcony of Buckingham Palace on June 5 at the conclusion of the long Platinum Jubilee weekend

The Queen was last seen on the balcony of Buckingham Palace on June 5 at the conclusion of the long Platinum Jubilee weekend

Her Majesty had missed a number of events over the weekend after experiencing 'some discomfort', and was seen holding a walking stick

Her Majesty had missed a number of events over the weekend after experiencing ‘some discomfort’, and was seen holding a walking stick

Both the Queen and the Archbishop of Canterbury missed the Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul's Cathedral earlier this month.  Pictured is Prime Minister Boris Johnson giving a speech at the service

Both the Queen and the Archbishop of Canterbury missed the Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral earlier this month. Pictured is Prime Minister Boris Johnson giving a speech at the service

The Canterbury Cross for Services to the Church of England

This presentation is made to Her Majesty in her Platinum Jubilee year in recognition and gratitude for her unstinting support of her Church throughout her reign.

The Book of the Common Prayer provided the following prayer on the accession of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in 1952:

O GOD, who providest for thy people by thy power,

and rulest over them in love:

Vouchsafe so to bless thy Servant our Queen,

that under her this nation may be wisely regulated,

and thy Church may serve thee in all godly quietness;

and grant that she being devoted to thee with her whole heart,

and persevering in good works unto the end,

may, by thy guidance, come to thine everlasting kingdom;

through Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord,

who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost,

ever one God, world without end.

Amen.

Throughout her reign, Her Majesty has upheld both the Christian religion and the Church of England in her roles as Defender of the Faith and Supreme Governor of the Church of England.

Whether in the formality of opening sessions of the General Synod or the more intimate context of her personal addresses to the nation and the Commonwealth at Christmas, Her Majesty has made manifest her own deep faith and its relevance to all that she undertakes.

Her subtle understanding of the changing position of the Established Church in England has sustained and encouraged laity and clergy alike.

Her care for the unity of her people and the welfare of the least fortunate have been a constant inspiration to the whole Church.

Hers is an example of the Christian life well led.

This presentation of the Canterbury Cross is a heartfelt symbol of the love, loyalty and affection in which the Church of England holds Her Majesty and it represents the recognition and gratitude of her whole Church for her seventy years of unstinting service.

God Save The Queen!

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