Archbishop of Canterbury to miss Platinum Jubilee service due to Covid-19

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The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby.
Photo: Steve Parsons/Getty Images

The Archbishop of Canterbury will no longer deliver a sermon at a service of thanksgiving to celebrate Queen Elizabeth's Platinum Jubilee this week as he has tested positive for COVID-19 and has mild pneumonia, his office said on Monday.

The thanksgiving service at London's St Paul's Cathedral on Friday is part of four days of celebrations to mark Elizabeth's record-breaking 70 years on the throne, ranging from military parades to a pop concert outside Buckingham Palace.

READ MORE | The full schedule of Platinum Jubilee weekend

"The Archbishop of Canterbury has today tested positive for Covid-19 and has also been suffering with mild pneumonia since last week. He will therefore not be preaching at the Service of Thanksgiving," Lambeth Palace said in a statement.

Justin Welby, 66, the spiritual leader of the worldwide Anglican Communion of about 85 million Christians, said he was "deeply saddened to be missing the historic celebration".

Lambeth Palace said it had informed Buckingham Palace and conveyed the Archbishop's regret. The Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, will preach the sermon in his place.

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