Church of Scotland Moderator remembers final visit to The Queen at Balmoral
Published on 9 September 2022 2 minutes read
The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland has spoken of his shock at the sad death of Her Majesty The Queen just days after joining her at Balmoral for the weekend.
The Rt Rev Dr Iain Greenshields, 68, was a guest of Her Majesty after performing a sermon at Braemar and Crathie Parish Church and described The Queen as the "life and soul of things" and "full of fun".
Dr Greenshields had dinner on Saturday and lunch on Sunday with Her Majesty, the Prince of Wales and the Princess Royal just days before her death at her beloved Highland home on Thursday afternoon.
"It was a fantastic visit. Her memory was absolutely amazing and she was really full of fun," Dr Greenshields said.
"It came as a great shock to me when I heard she was gravely ill because she was in amazingly good form over the weekend.
"She was the life and soul of things. She was speaking very personally to me about her time there way back when she was a child, she was talking about her horses from the past, naming them from 40 years ago, people's names and places. She was quite remarkable."
Over a "very lively conversation", The Queen was in very good spirits and exercised a phenomenal memory for places, names, people and horses, Dr Greenshields added,
"She talked about her memories of Balmoral as a child, her father the King and the Church of Scotland, which she had a very fond affection for," he said.
"She asked about me, my ministry and my family and came across as a happy person and was very gracious.
"It was a very engaging and thoroughly enjoyable experience."
Dr Greenshields also paid tribute to the faith, service and dedication which he said had been a hallmark of The Queen's long reign.
"She has been the steady constant in the life of our nation for over seven decades and most of us will have grown up knowing only her as our monarch," he said.
"Tireless in her duty, The Queen has demonstrated a life of selfless dedication.
"Her love for her family was mirrored in her love for our nation and the wider Commonwealth."