I am ambivalent about the Institution of the monarchy, and although I don't really want to live in a republic, I have, from time-to-time, questioned the privilege and elite nature of the royal family. Nevertheless, the Queen and Prince Philip have always maintained a sense of dignity and duty that, frankly, some of the younger generation seem to lack. I have seen them several times in my life, and have always felt inspired by what they represent at the time. Unfortunately, on reflection, the institution of the monarchy has also represented the worst of colonialism. Hence my ambivalence.
His role with the military, and especially the Royal Navy is also part of my sense of connection to the Duke of Edinburgh. Having served in both the Army and Navy myself, the Royal Family, in every generation, have exemplified this sense of national duty and pride.
But there is no doubt about what his life meant to the Commonwealth and the rest of the Royal Family. When his uncle, Lord Louis Mountbatten, was assassinated in 1979, we were reminded that Prince Philip's last name was not, in fact, Windsor, but Mountbatten, and his connections to the history of the British Empire are an important part of the story. And in my prayers, as we always remember the Queen, the further intention will be for comfort and peace in her soul, for surely the death of a life partner of almost 75 years must leave a huge wound.
And as the church prays, May he Rest in Peace and Rise in Glory.