Future Queen Amalia christened
14 June 2004
AMSTERDAM — Princess Catharina-Amalia was christened in The Hague on Saturday. The future Dutch Queen was calm and even yawned when water from the river Jordan was sprinkled on her head.
The daughter of Crown Prince Willem-Alexander and Princess Maxima — who was born on 7 December last year — was christened in front of about 1,200 people, including royal guests from Belgium and Luxembourg and Dutch dignitaries.
Reverend Carel ter Linden performed the protestant service in the Grote van Sint Jacobskerk. Sweden’s Princess Victoria acted as one of Amalia’s godparents.
“Enjoy life and try to see every situation in a positive light. May you stay close to nature, happiness and find joy in helping others,” Victoria said to the baby princess.
Prince Willem-Alexander and Princess Maxima wanted a youthful theme for the christening so 15 first-year secondary school students from all Dutch provinces attended the event. The National Children’s Choir and the National Youth Choir also performed.
Princess Amalia is second in line to the Dutch throne after her father. She wore a christening dress dating back to 1880, which was designed fro the christening of Queen Wilhelmina.
Besides Princess Victoria, her godparents were Maxima’s friend Samantha van Welderen barones Rengers-Deane, Prince Constantijn, Maxima’s brother Martín Zorreguieta, vice-president of the Council of State Herman Tjeenk Willink and Willem-Alexander’s friend Marc ter Haar.
Both Willem-Alexander and the Argentine-born Maxima — who were married in Amsterdam in February 2002 — were seen to shed tears throughout the service, which was also attended by Queen Beatrix and Maxima’s parents.
The attendance of Maxima’s parents was noteworthy because they were not invited to the royal couple’s wedding ceremony amid controversy over Maxima’s father.
Jorge Zorreguieta was a member of the Argentinean military government of 1976-83. Up to 30,000 people went missing during the regime’s rule and are presumed dead.
About 20 demonstrators made their presence felt on Dam Square in Amsterdam to protest against Zorreguieta’s attendance at the christening.
But the christening was officially described as a private ceremony so the Dutch government or Parliament could not raise objections to Zorreguieta’s attendance, Dutch public news service NOS reported.
An NOS survey indicated that 84 percent of the Dutch public did not have a problem with Zorreguieta attending the christening of his grandchild. Just 8 percent were opposed.
[Copyright Expatica News 2004]
Subject: Dutch news