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Prince William Accepts Flowers for Kate Middleton as He Returns to Duty After Pulling Out of Service

"He seemed touched," Karen Pollock tells PEOPLE

<p>TOBY MELVILLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images</p> Prince William receives a bouquet of flowers for his wife Kate Middleton during a visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue, in London, on February 29.

TOBY MELVILLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Prince William receives a bouquet of flowers for his wife Kate Middleton during a visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue, in London, on February 29.

Prince William’s latest engagement came with a bright bouquet for Kate Middleton as she continues her private recovery from abdominal surgery.

On Thursday, the Prince of Wales, 41, returned to royal duties with a visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue in London, where he received flowers for his wife. The Princess of Wales, 42, was also meant to visit the synagogue, with the stop planned to coincide with Holocaust Memorial Day. However, the engagement was postponed due to Princess Kate’s procedure on Jan. 16 and was reinstated as soon as was practicable, according to palace aides.

“He said he was sorry that it had to be postponed as it was meant to be around Holocaust Memorial Day, and I gave him some flowers and a card to wish her a speedy recovery and that we were thinking of her. He seemed touched,” Karen Pollock, CEO of the Holocaust Educational Trust, tells PEOPLE.

<p>TOBY MELVILLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images</p> Prince William meets with young people at the Western Marble Arch Synagogue in London, on February 29.

TOBY MELVILLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Prince William meets with young people at the Western Marble Arch Synagogue in London, on February 29.

Related: Prince William Says He and Kate Are 'Extremely Concerned' About Antisemitism Rise During Synagogue Visit

Prince William’s visit to the synagogue marked the second of two outings to recognize both the rise in antisemitism and the human suffering in the Middle East. There, he spoke with young ambassadors of the Holocaust Educational Trust who work in the community as advocates against hatred and antisemitism. The heir to the throne also met 94-year-old Holocaust survivor Renee Salt, who survived Bergen Belsen and Auschwitz, and heard about her experiences.

“For a Holocaust survivor who has been through the very worst, him being there and giving her his time and support, is saying ‘You matter, what happens matters, and the threat of antisemitism matters.’ And that is a very powerful thing,” Pollock tells PEOPLE. “That is powerful to the community which is feeling vulnerable at the moment.”

<p>TOBY MELVILLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images</p> Prince William speaks with Renee Salt, a Holocaust survivor, during a visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue, in London, on February 29.

TOBY MELVILLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Prince William speaks with Renee Salt, a Holocaust survivor, during a visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue, in London, on February 29.

Related: Why Haven't We Seen Kate Middleton Since Her Abdominal Surgery?

While she wasn’t with him, Prince William said that both he and his wife condemned the rise of antisemitism.

“Antisemitism has no place in our society...Both Catherine and I are extremely concerned about the rise of antisemitism," he said at the house of worship.

Prince William’s meaningful visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue was his first public appearance after he abruptly pulled out of a memorial service for his late godfather, King Constantine of Greece, on Tuesday due to an unspecified personal matter, a palace source said. PEOPLE understands personal matter was not related to the health of his father, King Charles, who was recently diagnosed with cancer and has postponed public-facing duties while receiving treatment.

<p>TOBY MELVILLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images</p> Rabbi Daniel Epstein shows Britain's Prince William, Prince of Wales a 17th century Torah scroll during a visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue, in London, on February 29.

TOBY MELVILLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Rabbi Daniel Epstein shows Britain's Prince William, Prince of Wales a 17th century Torah scroll during a visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue, in London, on February 29.

Amid the last-minute change of plans, which was set to see Prince William deliver a reading at the church service, the palace noted that Princess Kate is “doing well” after having surgery last month. The Princess of Wales remained in hospital following the operation, before heading home to continue her recovery. In the Jan. 17 statement announcing that Kate had had surgery the day prior, Kensington Palace said, "Based on the current medical advice, she is unlikely to return to public duties until after Easter."

On Thursday, a spokesperson for the Princess of Wales reiterated that she is “doing well” amid social media speculation about her health and whereabouts.

"We were very clear from the outset that the Princess of Wales was out until after Easter and Kensington Palace would only be providing updates when something was significant," the spokesperson said.

<p>Chris Jackson/Getty </p> Kate Middleton visits Nottingham Trent University to learn about their mental health support system on October 11, 2023 in Nottingham, England.

Chris Jackson/Getty

Kate Middleton visits Nottingham Trent University to learn about their mental health support system on October 11, 2023 in Nottingham, England.

The memorial service for King Constantine, which doubled as a royal reunion for members of the British royal family and foreign royals, was held at St. George's Chapel in Windsor Castle a few hours before Buckingham Palace shared sad news. That evening, the palace announced the "shock" death of Thomas Kingston, the husband of King Charles’ second cousin Lady Gabriella, at age 45.

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<p>Kin Cheung - WPA Pool/Getty Images</p> Prince William at the British Red Cross HQ in London on February 20.

Kin Cheung - WPA Pool/Getty Images

Prince William at the British Red Cross HQ in London on February 20.

Prince William’s visit to the synagogue came a week after he visited the British Red Cross headquarters in London to see and hear about some of the relief efforts taking place on the ground in Gaza.

Before the Red Cross trip, King Charles’ elder son released a rare statement on the crisis in the Middle East and Gaza Strip.

"I remain deeply concerned about the terrible human cost of the conflict in the Middle East since the Hamas terrorist attack on 7 October," Prince William said in a statement."Too many have been killed."

"I, like so many others, want to see an end to the fighting as soon as possible. There is a desperate need for increased humanitarian support to Gaza. It’s critical that aid gets in and the hostages are released," he added. "Sometimes it is only when faced with the sheer scale of human suffering that the importance of permanent peace is brought home."

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