Neville will always treasure his gift of Maundy coins from Queen

A County Armagh hospice volunteer has told how he will always treasure receiving a letter from the Queen as he was awarded the traditional Maundy coins before Easter.

Thursday, 1st April 2021, 10:29 am
Neville Pogue from County Armagh holding his gift of Maundy money

The Queen has written to this year’s Maundy Recipients, who have been recognised by their dioceses for their contributions to their local church and community life.

Each year, the Queen distributes specially-minted coins, the Maundy Gift, to pensioners at the Royal Maundy Service, which has been held at different Cathedrals and Abbeys across the United Kingdom.

While this year’s service was not able to take place due to the ongoing restrictions, the Maundy Gift and a letter from The Queen have been sent out instead.

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There are 190 Maundy Recipients this year; one man and one woman for each of the Queen’s 95 years.

Each recipient receives two purses, one red and one white, which have been blessed by the Sub-Dean at the Chapel Royal, St James’s Palace.

One of those receiving the coins is Neville Pogue from County Armagh, who, alongside his wife, Myrtle, has been a dedicated volunteer for Southern Area Hospice Services for more than 20 years.

During that time he has worked to enable the hospice to continue their work providing specialist palliative care and support to local people who are living with cancer and other illnesses, such as Multiple Sclerosis and Motor Neurone Disease. Over the years, Neville has assisted with many fundraising events as well as hosting coffee mornings and selling goods at local markets in aid of the hospice.

Neville said: “I feel honoured and privileged to have been chosen as a recipient of Maundy money and to also have received a letter from Her Majesty The Queen

“The experience is something I will always treasure.”

In her letter to each of this year’s Maundy Recipients, the Queen wrote: “I am delighted to send you the Maundy Gift which I hope you will accept as an expression of my personal thanks to you for all that you have done to enrich the life of your community.

“Each year, at the Royal Maundy Service, we have an opportunity to recognise, and give thanks for, work done by countless people for the wellbeing of their neighbours; work that has often been taken for granted or hidden. The Service this year was to have taken place in Westminster Abbey on Thursday, 1st April. You were to have been one of the Recipients whose Christian service would be recognised on that occasion.

“I am sure you will be sad, as I am, that present circumstances make it impossible for that Service to take place. I hope however that this Maundy Gift will remind you for years to come that your efforts have been truly appreciated.”