Friday 18 October 2019

British royal wedding: Princess Diana’s sister to give reading at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding service

Lady Jane Fellowes was asked by Harry and Meghan to take part in the service in honour of the prince’s late mother.

Britain's Prince Harry greets wellwishers outside Windsor Castle ahead of his wedding to Meghan Markle tomorrow, in Windsor, Britain, May 18, 2018. REUTERS/Dylan Martinez
Britain's Prince Harry greets wellwishers outside Windsor Castle ahead of his wedding to Meghan Markle tomorrow, in Windsor, Britain, May 18, 2018. REUTERS/Dylan Martinez

By Alison Kershaw, Press Association

The only reading at the royal wedding will be given by a member of Prince Harry’s Spencer family, his aunt, Lady Jane Fellowes.

Speaking from the Nave, Diana, Princess of Wales’ older sister will read from the Song of Solomon, which stresses the strength and power of love.

The short reading proclaims: “My beloved speaks and says to me: ‘Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away; for now the winter is past, the rain is over and gone’.”

The decision to give the important role of delivering the reading to the late princess’s sibling shows the strong connection Harry retains with his mother’s family.

File photo dated 19/11/13 of Lady Jane Fellowes, who will give the only reading at the royal wedding. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Saturday May 19, 2018. Speaking from the Nave, Diana, Princess of Wales' older sister will read from the Song of Solomon, which stresses the strength and power of love. See PA story ROYAL Wedding Reading. Photo credit should read: Arthur Edwards/The Sun/PA Wire
File photo dated 19/11/13 of Lady Jane Fellowes, who will give the only reading at the royal wedding. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Saturday May 19, 2018. Speaking from the Nave, Diana, Princess of Wales' older sister will read from the Song of Solomon, which stresses the strength and power of love. See PA story ROYAL Wedding Reading. Photo credit should read: Arthur Edwards/The Sun/PA Wire

Lady Jane, whose husband Baron Robert Fellowes is a former private secretary to the Queen, also gave a reading at Diana’s funeral in 1997.

The passage that will be read on Saturday says: “Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm; for love is as strong as death, passion fierce as the grave.

Princess Diana Holding Baby Prince Harry As She And Prince Charles Leave St. Marys Hospital In London. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
Princess Diana Holding Baby Prince Harry As She And Prince Charles Leave St. Marys Hospital In London. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)

“Its flashes are flashes of fire, a raging flame. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it.”

It also says: “If one offered for love all the wealth of one’s house, it would be utterly scorned.”

Britain's Prince Harry greets wellwishers outside Windsor Castle ahead of his wedding to Meghan Markle tomorrow, in Windsor, Britain, May 18, 2018. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne
Britain's Prince Harry greets wellwishers outside Windsor Castle ahead of his wedding to Meghan Markle tomorrow, in Windsor, Britain, May 18, 2018. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

The reading comes from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible.

Harry was just 12 years old when his mother was killed in a Paris car crash in 1997.

Meghan Markle and her mother, Doria Ragland, arriving at Cliveden House Hotel on the National Trust's Cliveden Estate to spend the night before her wedding to Prince Harry. Steve Parsons/Pool via REUTERS
Meghan Markle and her mother, Doria Ragland, arriving at Cliveden House Hotel on the National Trust's Cliveden Estate to spend the night before her wedding to Prince Harry. Steve Parsons/Pool via REUTERS
Meghan Markle and her mother, Doria Ragland, arriving at Cliveden House Hotel on the National Trust's Cliveden Estate to spend the night before her wedding to Prince Harry. Steve Parsons/Pool via REUTERS
Princess Diana of Wales smiling as she prepares to embrace a woman in the crowd, on the streets of Carmarthen, Wales, October 29th 1981. (Photo by Central Press/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Britain's Princess Diana (L) sits with US First Lady Hillary Clinton during ceremonies at the White House on September 24, 1996

The image of the young prince and brother William, then 15, walking behind Diana’s coffin on the day of her funeral became etched in the public’s memory.

All three of Diana’s siblings – Earl Spencer, Lady Sarah McCorquodale and Lady Jane – will be at the royal wedding in Windsor.

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