A Homily in Memory of Princess Diana
the first anniversary of farewell to Princess Diana, many
questions still remain unanswered. Her bodyguard survived the
car crash. Medical reports indicate that Princess Diana could
also have survived if emergency medical help were available
sooner. The tragic nature of this event was the situation in
which the most privileged woman perished for a lack of medical
help. One reason she could not be rescued was because her
companion's fortress-like car imprisoned her.
People's response to the tragedy of
Princess Diana was really an astonishing, attracting the largest
number of people in history to see a funeral. Who was she that
the outpouring of grief was throughout the world? A princess of
the British monarchy? Ironically, from the perspective of the
Windsor royal family she was no more than a divorcee striped off
the royal title. However, she had qualities that distinguished
her as the "queen of people's heart." Princess Diana was a
unique person in her appearance, in her privileges, and in her
influence. She was a princess with a serving heart. Her royal
heart went out to the underprivileged, and her noble hands of
charity touched the untouchable. In addition to her Charity
Work, I admired the way she maintained an intimate relationship
with people in the shadow.
Surely there was a reason to feel sorrow
over the loss of such a celebrity. But what was the feeling
shared deep down in their heart? What came with the outpouring
grief was the shattering of the worldly philosophy of happiness.
For those who had grown their princess dream, an upward wish,
Princess Diana represented the incarnation of that dream. Here
was a woman who achieved the princess dream, only to be killed
by achieving what she had sought. This explains the mixed
feeling of the sorrow. As a woman writer pointedly expressed it,
a great number of people—especially women—felt their own
princess dream buried while watching the funeral service of
One of possible homiletic topics in
memory of Princess Diana is "What is irreplaceable in life?"
Because of her privileges she was considered to be among
happiest woman. Was she? Here was Princess Diana, a woman of
fame, yet a woman of loneliness, A beautiful wife without her
husband’s love. Here was a princess most envied by all women,
yet finding herself in a desperate pursuit of happiness. A woman
who left her husband and her palace to escape loneliness. A
woman who found her new prince and killed in the process.
It was midnight at the start of Sunday.
But with Dodi Fayed's ring on her finger, riding in a gilt
carriage—and perhaps a guilty carriage for the mother of the
future king of England—she was there as his companion on the way
to his apartment. At the seat of her rich friend’s carriage,
Princess Diana was going through that shadowed valley, where she
could find no guard to protect her at the crisis.
Dodi Fayed appeared to be a provider of
the easy life, but with his fast life, bad debts and abandoned
California fiancees, he was not known as a man of noble
character. Instead of his ring, the symbol of the earthly value,
Princess Diana could have set her mind on a higher value. Then
she might not have exchanged what was irreplaceable for what was
replaceable. And it is here that John Bunyan in Pilgrim's
Progress reminds us that the inheritors of the Heavenly Kingdom
set the highest on final victory. A princess dream may be
shattered on this earth, but we have hope. Our hope is the Crown
of Victory we are entitled in the Kingdom of God. To this hope
we invite those whose hearts are open to spiritual issues in
memory of Princess Diana.