This year, Queen Elizabeth II will be notably missing from the royal family’s customary Easter Sunday services.

According to a royal source, the monarch will not be in attendance at church on Sunday, April 17 in honour of Easter Sunday, but other members of the royal family will be there. While it is a holiday, it will also mark a solemn occasion — the first anniversary of Prince Philip’s funeral at Windsor Castle. The Duke of Edinburgh, who died at 99 years old on April 9, 2021, was laid to rest in the Royal Vault at St. George’s Chapel, where the royals typically attend Easter service.

As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the British royal family last headed to St. George’s Chapel for Easter in 2019. As for the 95-year-old sovereign, who celebrates her birthday next week, Queen Elizabeth more recently contracted COVID-19 in February, spurring her to cancel some virtual engagements. She made her first in-person appearance since recovering on March 7 at Windsor Castle, where she received Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

On Thursday, Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall attended the Royal Maundy Service on behalf of the queen, who did not attend. However, she did step out for the Service of Thanksgiving held in honour of her late husband in March at Westminster Abbey.

In a video recently shared on YouTube, the queen could be seen discussing the impact of COVID-19 during a virtual meeting with a man who had also contracted the virus. “It does leave one very tired and exhausted, doesn’t it?” she asked him. “This horrible pandemic.”


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