Leicester

Madeleine McCann: Parents pray at anniversary service

Kate and Gerry McCann Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Kate McCann helped to organise the service

The parents of Madeleine McCann have attended a church service in their home village to mark the tenth anniversary of her disappearance.

Kate and Gerry McCann joined villagers and well-wishers at Rothley Parish Church in Leicestershire to say prayers for their missing daughter.

The three-year-old vanished during a family holiday in Portugal in 2007.

Rev Rob Gladstone, who led the service, paid tribute to those still working to find Madeleine.

Prayers for other missing children were also read out during the service, which Kate McCann helped to organise.

Image caption Messages written by local children were left at the church

It had originally been due to take place outside at the village's war memorial but was moved indoors to give the McCann family more privacy.

The service began with Cat Stevens' recording of 'Morning Has Broken' being played out.

Rev Gladstone then told the congregation: "Lord we thank you for sustaining Gerry and Kate through these painful years.

"We pray for the team of women and men who are still searching for Madeleine and other missing children.

"May the Holy Spirit help them as they work hard to find out the truth."

Messages tied with yellow ribbon - signifying hope - had been placed at the church by local schoolchildren.

Image caption Posters urged those in attendance not to give up hope

Prayers were also due to be said for Madeleine at a church service in the Portuguese resort of Praia da Luz, where she went missing.

A sunset balloon release at a nearby beach was also planned.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Tributes were also left outside a church in Praia da Luz ahead of a planned mass

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