Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, have announced that they christened their daughter Princess Lilibet Diana in a private ceremony held in their Montecito mansion in California on Friday, March 3, 2023. This news was confirmed by the couple’s friend, Omid Scobie, on Twitter. He also revealed that the Archbishop of Los Angeles, the Rev John Taylor, presided over the ceremony.
The ceremony was attended by around 20 to 30 close friends of the couple. This includes Lilibet’s godfather, Tyler Perry, who is a billionaire. The ceremony was an Anglican one. It is reported that a gospel choir performed the songs “Oh Happy Day” and “This Little Light of Mine.” The guests and family members present at the event danced to a playlist containing songs from Harry and Meghan’s wedding reception at Windsor Castle.
The christening of the couple’s daughter is quite significant.
It marks the first time that Lilibet has been referred to as a princess. The couple released a statement in which they referred to their daughter as “Princess Lilibet Diana.” This is also the first indication that the couple intends to use their children’s royal titles in the future. This is despite how critical they have been of the institution of the monarchy.
It was reported that the couple extended an invitation to the Prince and Princess of Wales, the King and Queen Consort. However, they declined the invite. The snub of a British baptism for their daughter is not surprising. This is understandable considering the strained relations between the Sussexes and the royal family.
The Sussexes are keen to not deny their children the chance to be prince and princess as their birthright. However, they have stated that they will allow Archie and Lilibet to decide for themselves . When they are older, they can decide to drop or keep using the royal titles .
This decision may have been influenced by the fact that Archie and Lilibet did not receive their royal titles upon birth.
This is unlike Prince William and Kate Middleton’s three children. Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis all received their titles upon birth because William is the eldest son of King Charles.
The King reportedly had a private conversation with Prince Harry after the Queen’s funeral last year. He told him that his children would be allowed to be called Prince and Princess. This conversation may have helped to ease tensions between the Sussexes and the royal family, as the use of Lilibet’s royal title marks an olive branch by the couple.
Despite their previous attacks on the institution of the monarchy and members of the royal family, it has been reported that there has been correspondence on the issue of the children’s titles between the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and royal aides. It remains to be seen whether the couple will use their children’s royal titles in everyday conversational use or whether they will be reserved for formal settings only.
Buckingham Palace currently refers to Lilibet as “Miss Lilibet Mountbatten-Windsor” on their website. However, it has been reported that the website will be updated in due course to reflect Lilibet’s new title. This will reflect her new title as a princess. This is a significant development for the couple and their family. It will be interesting to see how they choose to use their children’s royal titles in the future.