The bells of all cathedrals, churches, and monasteries in Romania will toll at the same time for King Michael, the country’s last sovereign. This will happen on three occasions in the next days, during the events related to the king’s funeral, the Romanian Orthodox Church has announced.
The first time the bells will toll on Wednesday, December 13, at 11:00, when the plane bringing the king’s casket from Switzerland to Romania is supposed to land at the Henri Coanda International Airport in Otopeni.
The second bell toll will take place on Saturday, December 16, at 12:30, marking the beginning of the funeral service to take place at the Patriarchal Cathedral in Bucharest.
The third time all Church bells in Romania will toll for the king will be on Saturday at 18:30, when the burial ceremony will start at the new Curtea de Arges Royal Cathedral.
King Michael I of Romania died on December 5 at his private residence in Switzerland, at the age of 96. Romania will hold three days of mourning in his honor, starting Thursday, December 14.
The king’s body will be brought to the country on December 13, and taken to the Peles Castle in Sinaia. The king’s coffin will lie in the castle’s Hall of Honour from 14:00 to 16:00. President Klaus Iohannis will go to Peles to pay his last respects to the late king. The public will not have access to the Hall of Honour, according to the program of the funeral announced by the Royal House of Romania.
In the evening of December 13, the king’s coffin will be taken to the Royal Palace in Bucharest, where it will remain until December 16. People can come to the Royal Palace to pay their respects in this period. However, the National Art Museum of Romania (MNAR), which is located in the Royal Palace, will be closed from December 14 to December 16.
On Saturday morning, December 16, the coffin will be taken to the Patriarchal Cathedral of Romania on a gun carriage. The funeral cortege will walk from the Royal Palace Square, along Calea Victoriei, then Unirii Square, to the Patriarchal Cathedral. The public and the press will not have access to the Cathedral during the funeral mass.
Then, the king’s coffin will be taken to Baneasa Royal Train Station, from where the Royal Train will take it to Curtea de Arges. At 5.50 p.m., His Late Majesty’s burial service will take place in Curtea de Argeș Cathedral. The ceremony will be attended only by the Custodian of the Crown, the Royal Family of Romania, and members of foreign royal families. The public will not be allowed past the front gates of the Park of the Curtea de Arges Monastery, the Royal House announced.
Also, the New Cathedral will be closed to visitors during the seven days following the funeral.
Books of condolence are open at Peles Castle, the Royal Palace, and Elisabeta Palace. The full program of King Michael’s funeral is available on the Royal Family’s official website.
(Photo source: Wikimedia Commons)