Britain’s Prince Charles Dons Trademark Royal Yarmulke During Visit to Belfast Synagogue
The Prince of Wales sported his personalized kippah during his visit to a synagogue in Northern Ireland on Wednesday.
Prince Charles donned the blue velvet skullcap that bears his official crest as he attended a service at a synagogue in Belfast, according to the UK’s Daily Mail. He was at the temple with UK Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis for the installation of stained-glass windows, commemorating Holocaust Memorial Day and created and designed as part of the Torn From Home Windows project, which promotes diversity of the migrant community in Northern Ireland.
The Prince of Wales has worn his personalized kippah in the past to other Jewish-related events and ceremonies, including the funeral of former Israeli President Shimon Peres in 2016 and to Rabbi Mirvis’ induction ceremony in 2013.
First engagement of second day in NI, HRH The Prince of Wales visited the Belfast Synagogue where he met members of the Jewish and wider community, and unveiled two stained glass windows gifted to the Orthodox facility and made by local people @ClarenceHouse #RoyalVisitNI pic.twitter.com/l8mXuKRqDy
— Northern Ireland Office (@NIOgov) May 22, 2019
At the temple Prince Charles spoke with members of the Jewish community, including Ruth Kohner, who at two years old was part of the Kindertransport in 1939, a rescue effort that brought thousands of Jewish children from Eastern Europe to the UK. Kohner, 82, said the prince asked questions about her experience fleeing Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany and growing up on a farm near Belfast, the Daily Mail reported.
Rabbi Mirvis spoke about the need to celebrate diversity, amid ongoing terror attacks around the world targeting religious communities, and also praised Prince Charles for his “compassion and tolerance,” and commitment to projects supporting peace and reconciliation, according to The Jewish Chronicle.
Jewish community deputy chair Gerald Steinberg said he asked the prince why it has taken 150 years for a member of the royal family to visit the shul. “He replied, ‘I am really sorry we have kept you waiting so long.’ He was charming,” Steinberg recalled. “It was a most special day.”
Steven Jaffe, co-chair of Northern Ireland Friends of Israel, who also met the prince at the synagogue, said he felt the royal’s visit “indicates the important role of small regional communities in the UK because of their tremendous civic engagement and outreach to the wider community.”
Prince Charles also visited one of the oldest synagogues in the Western Hemisphere while on a trip to Barbados in March.