Prince Harry On Former Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks, Z’l: “He Didn’t Mince His Words”

Prince Harry. (Justin Setterfield/Pool Photo via AP)

Prince Harry wrote in his memoir Spare about his admonishment from former Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks, z’l, after he wore a Nazi uniform to a party in 2005.

Harry wrote that his father, now King Charles, sent him to Rabbi Sack’s home after the debacle, which occurred when Harry was 20.

“Pa sent me to a holy man. 51. Bearded, bespectacled, with a deeply lined face and dark, wise eyes, he was Chief Rabbi of Britain, that much I’d been told. But right away I could see he was much more,” Harry wrote.

“An eminent scholar, a religious philosopher, a prolific writer with more than two dozen books to his name, he’d spent many of his days staring out of windows and thinking about the root causes of sorrow, of evil, of hate. He didn’t mince words.

“He condemned my actions. He wasn’t unkind, but it had to be done. There was no way round it. He also placed my stupidity in historical context. He spoke about the six million, the annihilated. Jews, Poles, dissenters, intellectuals, homosexuals. Children, babies, old people, turned to ash and smoke. A few short decades ago.

“I’d arrived at his house feeling shame. I now felt something else, a bottomless self-loathing. But that wasn’t the rabbi’s aim. That certainly wasn’t how he wanted me to leave him. He urged me not to be devastated by my mistake, but instead to be motivated. He spoke to me with the quality one often encounters in truly wise people: forgiveness.

“He assured me that people do stupid things, say stupid things, but it doesn’t need to be their intrinsic nature. I was showing my true nature, he said, by seeking to atone. Seeking absolution. To the extent that he was able, and qualified, he absolved me. He gave me grace. He told me to lift my head, go forth, use this experience to make the world better.”

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)


  1. “he’d spent many of his days staring out of windows and thinking about the root causes of sorrow, of evil, of hate”

    All of us here know that in actuality, a Rav spends his time learning or dealing with day to day requirements of his job whether it’s pulpit or education.. The fact that Harry describes Rabbi Sacks as though this fictitious, romanticized way was factual, is a good example of how the wokes see only their imaginations, and not the real world.

  2. Unfortunately Harry didn’t listen, even though he may have listened on that one item, but he didn’t listen on everything else.

    When is the wonder what Harry really thinks and what his wife tells him to think

  3. Good story if we know it happened, do we have another source besides the person who wants to be vindicated for his wrong by the ‘later Cheif Rabbi ZZ’L?

  4. UJM-
    Megalomaniac or not- He speaks so highly of the Rabbi, zechuso yagein aleinu, understanding that it was his wisdom, goodness and most of all good sense that he didn’t lace into Harry at the time. It seems that Rabbi Sacks handles this in much the same way as a parent would- a good parent who is invested in his child’s growth.
    Reading this I am feeling such a loss for klall Yisroel. If this is how Rabbi Sacks spoke to an Aino Yehudi, albeit a prince, imagine how he spoke to and affected acheinu Benei Yisroel.

  5. And how did Jonathan Sacks atone for denying that krias Yam Suf occurred, and for saying that Chava was nothing but a mitochondria, in his debate with an atheist, in which he ended up sounding like he agreed with said atheist??