Sunday, November 27

Queen Elizabeth funeral live updates: Service ends, casket exits

The U.K. and much of the world are mourning Queen Elizabeth II, who was celebrated at a funeral at Westminster Abbey Monday and will later be laid to rest beneath St George’s Chapel with her husband of 73 years, her sister Margaret and her parents.

The queen’s casket entered Westminster Abbey around 11 a.m. local time Monday, exiting around noon after the funeral proceedings. King Charles III, the royal family and dignitaries from around the world arrived shortly ahead of the funeral.

The state funeral, expected to be the biggest gathering of world leaders in years, drew in millions of people to the streets of London and likely billions more to their TVs and computer screens. The funeral and events surrounding it were designed to help unite the royal family and divided subjects while helping ensure the monarchy survives another century.

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II is placed on a gun carriage during her funeral service in Westminster Abbey in central London Monday Sept. 19, 2022.

London’s mayor’s office said up to two million people could line the streets as members of the royal family and hundreds of foreign dignitaries and heads of state descend on Westminster Abbey for a ceremony expected to be full of all the pomp and splendor the monarchy can offer. More than 10,000 police officers were on patrol in London with reinforcements supplied from all of Britain’s 43 police forces, authorities said.

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Funeral program: What happened at queen’s funeral

The funeral concluded just after noon, local time. The pall bearers escorted the queen’s coffin onto the gun carriage.

The queen will be buried in a special chapel beneath the floor of St George’s with her parents, sister Princess Margaret, and husband, Philip. This ceremony will be private.

Britain's Kate, Princess of Wales, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, Prince George and Princess Charlotte arrive at the Westminster Abbey for the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II, in London, Monday Sept. 19, 2022.

The program also included:

  • Patricia Scotland Commonwealth Secretary-General read a lesson from Corinthians 15 as a tribute to the queen’s life of dedication to service and the nation.
  • A sermon by the Archbishop of Canterbury
  • Choirs sang the Anthem, taken from “Songs of Farewell” by Hubert Parry, a favorite of King Charles’.
  • A short anthem, composed by Ralph Vaughan Williams for the queen’s coronation in 1953, presenting a reflective moment in the service.
  • The third hymn, “Love Divine, All Loves Excelling” is a Welsh tune, and was sung at the wedding of The Prince and Princess of Wales at Westminster Abbey in 2011. The arrangement is by James O’Donnell, a former organist at the Abbey.
  • The Archbishop gave the commendation over the queen’s coffin. The commendation will include the familiar line, “Go Forth, O Christian Soul, From This World,” which is often heard during funerals.
  • The choirs sang a new anthem, composed for the service by Sir James McMillan. The words are taken from Romans 8, which leads with the hopeful, confident line, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?”
  • The dean pronounced the blessing from the altar, and the congregation will remain standing for the last post, which will be sounded by the state trumpeters of the household cavalry.
  • This was followed by two minutes’ silence, to be observed across the United Kingdom.
  • The trumpeters then sounded the reveille, before the national anthem was sung.
  • The sovereign’s piper played the traditional lament, ‘Sleep, dearie, sleep.’
  • At the conclusion of the lament, at noon local time (7 a.m. ET), the pall bearers entered and moved the queen’s coffin to the state gun carriage.

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