A memorial service for the murdered Conservative MP David Amess was held at the London Cathedral of Westminster. In a message read at the funeral, Pope Francis emphasized that “Amess had a strong faith in his devoted public service.”
Amess’s funeral ceremonies were spread over two days – residents of his Southend West constituency in eastern England said goodbye to him on Monday, and a funeral service was held on Tuesday at Westminster Cathedral – Britain’s most important Catholic temple – followed by a funeral.
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The mass was attended, among others, by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, opposition leader Keir Starmer, House of Commons speaker Lindsay Hoyle, and all living former Conservative prime ministers Theresa May, David Cameron and John Major.
A message from the Pope
During the mass, a message was read from Pope Francis, who emphasized that Amess, as a practicing Catholic in the public service, was driven by a strong faith.
“His Holiness gratefully remembers Sir David’s years of dedicated public service, which was guided by his strong Catholic faith and manifested in his deep concern for the poor and disadvantaged, in his commitment to defend God’s gift of life, and in his efforts to foster understanding. and cooperation with the Holy See in its universal mission “- it was written in the papal message.
“Commending the soul of Sir David to the loving mercy of Jesus Christ, our Savior, the Holy Father prays that all who venerate his memory may be strengthened in their resolve to reject the paths of violence, fight evil with good and help build a society of ever greater justice, brotherhood and solidarity. “- is the message.
The perpetrator waited for the arrival of the police
Amess, 69, was murdered on October 15 during a meeting with constituency in Leigh-on-Sea. The murder was carried out by 25-year-old Ali Harbi Ali, a British citizen of Somali descent, who in front of at least two people stabbed him 17 times and waited calmly for the police to arrive. The police considered his actions an act of terror.
Amess was one of the oldest British MPs. He has been a member of the House of Commons since 1983, and since 1997 he has represented Southend West. He was an outspoken Eurosceptic and backed Brexit ahead of the 2016 referendum. He was a conservative on social issues – actively speaking out against abortion and voting against the recognition of same-sex marriage – but he was also an active defender of animal rights. Though he never held a ministerial position, he enjoyed universal respect in the House of Commons. He was married and had five children.
“Today we mourn the death of Sir David Amess, a beloved colleague, government official and friend, and pay tribute to his enormous contribution to politics for the people of Southend and the country,” Boris Johnson tweeted on Tuesday.
Main photo source: VICKIE FLORES / PAP / EPA