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Britain praying for Queen Elizabeth, Archbishop of Canterbury says

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Sep 8, 2022

The Archbishop of Canterbury has extended the support of the Church of England to Queen Elizabeth II as doctors say they are “concerned” for her health. 

Archbishop Justin Welby, head of the Church of England and spiritual leader of the Anglican Communion, made the statement Thursday after reports surfaced that the monarch was in ill health.

“My prayers, and the prayers of people across the Church of England and the nation, are with Her Majesty The Queen today,” Welby said.

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The archbishop added, “May God’s presence strengthen and comfort Her Majesty, her family, and those who are caring for her at Balmoral.”

Queen Elizabeth’s doctors “are concerned for Her Majesty’s health,” Buckingham Palace announced Thursday, adding that they recommended she stay under medical supervision.

“The Queen remains comfortable” at Balmoral Castle, the palace added. 

The queen, 96, celebrated her platinum jubilee earlier this year.

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The Archbishop of Canterbury is typically responsible for the spiritual needs of the royal family, and typically performs rites and sacraments necessary for the king or queen. These services can include baptisms, coronations, marriages, and funeral .

Queen Elizabeth II, like all British monarchs since country split from the Roman Catholic Church, is the Supreme Governor of the Church of England.

Despite the rapid secularization of the United Kingdom and the rapid decrease in Church of England attendance, Queen Elizabeth has been a vocally Christian monarch. The queen has referenced her faith as a source of strength and courage for decades.

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Welby succeeded Rowan Williams — who served in the office for a decade — in 2015.

Anglicans, whose roots are in the missionary work of the Church of England, are the third-largest grouping of Christians in the world, behind Roman Catholics and the Orthodox.

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