Coronation Day

 
Dear Friends,

The United Reformed Church offers this reflection and prayer for this day when Their Majesties, The King and Queen, will be crowned.  

with every good wish

Andy

The Rev’d Andy Braunston
Minister for Digital Worship

Coronation Day Reflection
 
At this time of national rejoicing, the United Reformed Church prays that Almighty God will bless Their Majesties The King and Queen as they are crowned at Westminster Abbey and grant them every happiness in their new roles. 
 
At the heart of today’s Coronation is a service where the King will be anointed in a rite going back to the earliest days of the, English, monarchy.  The Church of England, as the Established English Church, has the honour, and burden, of presiding – with other denominations, and religious traditions, getting cameo parts.  In a typically British piece of ritual much pomp and ceremony will take place to anoint and crown someone to a purely symbolic office with no real independent power.  Such authority that the King has can only be exercised with the advice, and consent, of the government.  Such guidance and advice that the King may give to ministers is necessarily private and, of course, can easily be ignored.   
 
The URC stands in a tradition of British Christianity which was, at best, rather ambivalent about the monarchy.  Our spiritual ancestors welcomed the Commonwealth in the Civil War era and argued, after all, for the execution of Charles I!  Passages in the Old Testament which showed God warning against the Jewish people establishing a monarchy were used as guidance in the Civil War era and the identification of the monarchy with the Church of England added another layer of complexity to our history.   Thankfully, the turmoil of those years is long behind us and, in a much more secular age, differences between Christian denominations are less acute.  The URC, and its antecedents, were – and are – eager to play a key part in the civic life of our nations; each year we continue a long tradition of sending an Address To The Throne from our General Assembly where we comment on the issues of the day, presumably in the hope that His Majesty will send those comments on to various government departments. 
 
In our contemporary society, and certainly within our congregations, there are a variety of views on the monarchy, yet we can unite in wishing Their Majesties The King and Queen well today.  We pray that they will feel God’s presence as they are anointed and throughout His Majesty’s reign.  We hope that they will use their office well and use their voices at the centre for those on the margins of our bitterly divided society.  We pray that His Majesty The King reminds us of the importance of spirituality and religion in the lives of our nations.  Above all, the URC commends their Majesties, The King and Queen, to God’s care and protection. 
 
Prayer 
 
Eternal God, 
You order and govern our world and all that is therein, 
bless, we pray, Charles and Camilla today 
as they are crowned and anointed, 
that amid the pomp and ritual, 
they may feel your loving presence, 
that they may fulfil the roles prescribed for them, 
and that we may, in this kingdom, be better governed, 
and always reminded of your eternal Kingdom which is to come.  Amen. 

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