Starlight 2021: Christmas service held to commemorate Royal Star & Garter veterans

Royal Star & Garter has held its festive Starlight service with residents and staff at each of its Homes.

The event, which celebrates the lives of residents past and present during the Christmas season, was published on the charity’s website at 3pm on 5 December. It will remain available to view over the holiday period.

Royal Star & Garter provides loving, compassionate care to veterans and their partners living with disability or dementia.

The short service features readings and poetry from residents and staff.

It is the second year running that Starlight has been held virtually. Prior to the pandemic, services would take place at churches local to Royal Star & Garter’s Homes in Solihull, Surbiton and High Wycombe. It is normally attended by residents, staff, volunteers and the relatives of those who have been cared for by the charity.

This year’s service includes a message from the charity’s President, Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra. She said:

“2021 has been another year of challenges and yet, with the support of each other, we are able to overcome adversity. I send my warmest good wishes to you and your families for Christmas and the New Year.”

Before Covid-19, one of the most cherished highlights of Starlight was the opportunity to hang star-shaped messages to loved ones on the Christmas tree. This year, a decoration can be printed off and personalised in special tribute to loved ones.

The Starlight service was shown simultaneously to residents in the Homes, and will be repeated throughout the run-up to Christmas.

The charity’s Director of Care, Pauline Shaw, said:

“Starlight is a special moment for all connected to Royal Star & Garter to pause and honour our loved ones as we prepare for Christmas. It allows us to remember residents who have lived with us, and celebrate those who continue to do so.”

To watch the Starlight service, or print off a Christmas decoration in tribute to a loved one, go to www.starandgarter.org/starlight.

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