The Prince of Wales attends a service to celebrate the contribution of Christians in the Middle East

 The Prince of Wales today attended a service at Westminster Abbey to celebrate the contribution of Christians in the Middle East.

The Service was attended by over 1,000 people and included congregations from Coptic Orthodox Church Centre, Syriac Catholic Church and Iraqi Chaldean Catholic Church, all of whom have been visited by The Prince in recent years.

The Prince of Wales has worked for many years to encourage inter-faith dialogue and a greater understanding of different religions in Britain and abroad.

During an address, His Royal Highness said:

In recent years, I have had the great privilege of meeting so many Christians who, with such inspiring faith and courage, are battling oppression and persecution, or who have fled to escape it. Time and again I have been deeply humbled and profoundly moved by the extraordinary grace and capacity for forgiveness that I have seen in those who have suffered so much.

Forgiveness, as many of you know far better than I, is not a passive act, or submission.  Rather, it is an act of supreme courage; of a refusal to be defined by the sin against you; of determination that love will triumph over hate.”