The Queen to visit faith communities during Golden Jubilee



Buckingham Palace today released details of The Queen's visits to faith communities over the Golden Jubilee.

Among the most significant changes to Britain over the past 50 years has been the growth of religious and cultural diversity. The Queen has reflected this in many ways over the years, including visits, her Christmas messages and the annual Commonwealth Observance.

The Queen wished as part of her Jubilee programme to celebrate with British non-Christian communities. The four largest such groups are Muslim, Hindu, Sikh and Jewish. The Queen will be visiting each of these faiths in separate visits over the summer across the United Kingdom.

The Queen will be visiting the Highgate Hill Murugan (Hindu) Temple in London on 6th June 2002.

On 24th July she will visit the Manchester Jewish Museum.

On 31st July she will visit an Islamic Centre in Scunthorpe.

On 1st August she will visit the Guru Nanak Gurdhwara in Leicester.

Other members of the Royal Family will also be making visits to religious communities over the Jubilee period.

The Duke of York is to attend a Baha'i reception in Central London in July,

The Earl and Countess of Wessex will visit a Jain Temple in Leicester and a Zoroastrian Thanksgiving Service in North London and a senior Member of the Royal Family will attend a Buddhist gathering later in the year.

The purpose of each of these visits is to indicate respect for the diversity of faiths, to support inter-faith dialogue and to show that non-Christian as well as Christian communities are central to contemporary Britain.

In addition, 80 young people from the Christian and other religious backgrounds will take part in the Golden Jubilee Young People's Youth Forum, at St. James's Palace. Forum participants, aged between 16 and 24, will discuss the themes of faith service and community in 21st century Britain.

The Prince of Wales will contribute a video message and meet those taking part. The Youth Forum complements the Respect initiative which he will be launching next week at an event with a number of senior religious leaders.

On the evening of 10th June The Queen will hold a reception at Buckingham Palace for representatives of different faith communities, including the 80 young people who will have taken part in the youth forum earlier that day.