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The Queen joins the congregation for Songs of Praise

The Queen was the guest of honour for a special Songs of Praise episode marking a Christian charity’s milestone.

The programme, which was filmed at at St Mary’s Church, Islington, last month and will air later today, commemorates the 150 years of the Scripture Union.

Wearing a vibrant fuchsia ensemble, the Queen joined a congregation of friends and supporters of the organisation to mark its work encouraging children and young people to explore their faith.

The Queen was a guest on a special Songs of Praise episode marking 150 years of the Scripture Union. The episode was filmed in Islington last month and will be broadcast later today

Wearing a vibrant fuschia ensemble, Her Majesty, sat at the head of the congregation

Wearing a vibrant fuschia ensemble, Her Majesty, sat at the head of the congregation

Her Majesty looked animated as she joined worshipers in singing from a hymn book. The pre-recorded event, hosted by singer Katherine Jenkins, featured readings by Baroness Floella Benjamin.

 The Queen, who has a strong faith which she often reflects upon in her annual Christmas address to the nation and Commonwealth, sat at the head of the congregation. 

The Queen, who often speaks of her strong faith, appeared to sing from a hymn book, pictured

The Queen, who often speaks of her strong faith, appeared to sing from a hymn book, pictured

The congregation were entertained by a performance dramatising the organisation’s history and heard a new hymn, God of Unchanging Grace, by the prolific hymn writer Bishop Timothy Dudley-Smith. 

The Bishop of Durham, the Rt Rev Paul Butler, gave the address and told those gathered about the genesis of the Scripture Union. 

He said: ‘In the summer of 1867 Josiah Spiers met with 15 children, aged seven to 11, in the home of Thomas Hughes, just around the corner from here. 

The Queen, right, looked on as a school choir performed during the filming of the episode 

The Queen, right, looked on as a school choir performed during the filming of the episode 

‘At that point un-named, the Children’s Special Service Mission, later Scripture Union, was born. On the 26th August 1868, unplanned, Josiah, whilst on holiday in Llandudno, spelt out the text God is love (in the sand).

‘He was helped on that beach by around 50 children to whom he then told stories of Jesus. The work of sharing God’s good news with children was expanding.’

The Rev Tim Hastie-Smith, national director of the Scripture Union, said: ‘It was absolutely brilliant the Queen was able to join us, the fact that she found the time to be with us this afternoon, with a whole load of children and people celebrating God’s love, is an incredible thrill.’

Songs of Praise airs on BBC One today at 4.30pm.



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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