SHULES across Australia were this week urged “to add a special prayer in memory of Prince Philip and for the Queen and members of the royal family to find strength, peace and comfort amid their grief”.
The request came from the Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ), which extended “sincere condolences” on behalf of the community, following the death of the Duke of Edinburgh last Friday at the age of 99.
ECAJ president Jillian Segal noted that the late Prince “was a constant support to the Queen … gave generously of his time to many worthwhile causes and was the patron of numerous charities throughout the Commonwealth”.
Also paying tribute to the Prince were Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council chairman Mark Leibler and executive director Colin Rubenstein, who noted, “The son of one of the Righteous Among the Nations, he demonstrated a courageous determination and commitment to fight against the Nazis in war, and to fight Nazism as an evil ideology at home and abroad.”
Prince Philip, who has died at 99, was perhaps the closest member of the British royal family to Jews and Jewish causes, and in 1994 made a historic visit to Israel. Vale.
Remembering his unique character and warmth, they added, “As a prominent public figure for so many years, he served his country and the Commonwealth with dedication, flair and great distinction.”
President of the Rabbinical Association of Australia Rabbi Yaakov Glasman penned a message in the official condolence book at Government House this week. Hailing the Prince’s “service to his country and his community”, he wrote, “Many shules in Australia, New Zealand and around the world pray every Shabbat for the welfare of the royal family … This week, we continue to pray in the form of expressing our heartfelt condolences to the royal family and wish them strength and comfort during this challenging time.”
The Great Synagogue in Sydney, meanwhile, will be hosting Jewish and multicultural leaders at a special Shabbat service honouring the Prince this Saturday.
Those wishing to attend the Shabbat service at The Great are asked to email email@example.com.