The Queen and Prince William Were Reportedly Not at Meghan Markle’s Secret Baptism
It seemed clear that at some point before Meghan Markle married Prince Harry, she would be baptized into the Church of England first. And it would appear that item has promptly been crossed off the list—in advance of the May 19 nuptials—as the Daily Mail’s Richard Kay is reporting that Markle was secretly baptized on Tuesday night by the Archbishop of Canterbury at the Chapel Royal. (The Palace has not confirmed.)
Per Kay, the whole thing took about 45 minutes, and, as you might have assumed, was a very, very top-secret affair. Reportedly, Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall were present for the ceremony (and hosted a small dinner in Markle’s honor afterward), but Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge, as well as the Queen, were not in attendance.
Markle was not required to join the Church of England (of which the Queen is the head) before marrying the prince, though she had previously stated that she felt it was important to her to do so, given the Queen’s role. She was confirmed immediately following the baptism by Archbishop Justin Welby, who Kay says Markle has formed “a close bond with” and personally asked to conduct the baptism. The ritual also involved “holy water from the River Jordan from the private Royal Family font.”
While it’s unclear if either of Markle’s parents made the trip overseas for the baptism, she reportedly had two “sponsors” present, one of whom is believed to be a “close girlfriend.” Markle’s father, currently living in Mexico, is Episcopalian, and her mother, residing in the U.S., “belong[s] to another Protestant denomination.”