Prince Harry 'at her side' as Meghan Markle is reportedly baptised

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Britain's Prince Harry poses with Meghan Markle
FILE PHOTO: Britain's Prince Harry poses with Meghan Markle in the Sunken Garden of Kensington Palace, London, Britain, November 27, 2017. Reuters/Toby Melville/File Photo

Prince Harry’s fiancée Meghan Markle was reportedly baptised on Tuesday during a service in the Chapel Royal. Her future husband was “at her side” during the ceremony, which was attended by only a handful of royal aides.

The Daily Mail has reported about the “intimate 45-minute service.” Prince Charles was present, but Prince William and Queen Elizabeth, the head of the Church of England, were reportedly not in attendance. The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby led the service.

During the service, the full ritual of the Church was observed. Holy water from the River Jordan was poured on her head.

The bride-to-be had two sponsors to support her in the baptism in accordance with tradition. Sponsors are the equivalent of godparents. It was not clear if either Markle’s mother Doria Ragland or her father Thomas Markle travelled for the service.

Markle’s confirmation followed immediately, it has been said. Being confirmed means she will be able to join Harry at Holy Communion. The Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton reportedly had a private confirmation following her engagement to Prince William.

The 36-year-old had asked Welby to conduct the service after they formed a close bond in recent weeks, the Daily Mail reports. He instructed the American actress on the rites and sacraments of the Church. Markle was raised Protestant yet attended the Catholic Immaculate Heart girls-only private high school. Trevor Engelson, her former husband, was Jewish, but she did not convert to his faith. They married in 2011 and divorced two years later.

Markle was expected to be formally introduced to the Anglican faith as the royal wedding draws near. The baptism marks a significant step for her as future granddaughter-in-law to the Queen. She and Harry will marry at St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle on May 19.

Although she was not required to become an Anglican to marry Harry in church, Markle said she had chosen to be baptised and confirmed out of respect for the Queen Elizabeth’s role as Church of England’s head. The Chapel Royal is particularly significant in her fiancé’s life; it was where Princess Diana’s body laid for a week before her funeral in 1997.

It is believed appropriate for the Prince of Wales to have attended the service since he is expected to be the next head of the Church. Kensington Palace, however, declined to comment.