On Thursday February 17, 2022, all the members of the Belgian royal family met at the Notre-Dame de Laeken church. At this place was held the annual mass in memory of the deceased of the royal family. Note that this is the first time that all members of the royal family have appeared together in public. In addition, the health crisis linked to the pandemic got the better of this annual gathering in 2020 and 2021. Only sovereigns and former sovereigns were therefore able to attend this traditional mass to honor the late royals during this period.
This mass of February 17, 2022 recalls that of February 17, 1935. This date was marked by the mass in commemoration of the death of King Albert I. This sovereign died in an accident a year earlier. Since then, February 17 is the date when the royal family organizes a mass in memory of all their deceased. This year’s Mass is out of the ordinary. Indeed, King Philippe of Belgium, 61, and Queen Mathilde of Belgium, 49, King Albert II and Queen Paola, Princess Léa, Princess Astrid and Prince Lorenz, Prince Laurent and Princess Claire , as well as Princess Delphine and her husband James O’Hare were present at this event.
The first appearance of Princess Delphine of Belgium alongside King Albert
Note that this February 17 mass also marks the first appearance of Princess Delphine of Belgium, 53, alongside King Albert. Moreover, this is the first public appearance of King Albert of Belgium, 87, Queen Paola of Belgium, 84, and Princess Delphine of Belgium together.
Recall that King Albert II had officially recognized Princess Delphine as his daughter in 2020. Princess Delphine of Belgium had already made a few appearances since, especially last summer during the national holiday. Only, the king and queen were not at his side during this event.
Members of the Royal Family of Belgium © Frederic Andrieu