Chaplain Debbie Flach writes:
Looking around in church, it’s clear that we come from diverse backgrounds and Christian traditions, and few of us are UK nationals. That’s a cause for celebration here at Christ Church, but it’s also a reason to ask, “Why are we celebrating the coronation of the King of the United Kingdom?”
King Charles III is not only King of the united Kingdom, but also Head of the Commonwealth. This is an important symbolic and unifying role. As Head, His Majesty personally reinforces the links by which the Commonwealth joins people together from around the world.
You will have heard that His Majesty the King is the Supreme Governor of the Church of England. The King appoints archbishops, bishops and deans of cathedrals on the advice of the Prime Minister. The Church is led by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York and 106 other Bishops. They provide guidance and direction to the churches across the country and make decisions on the Church in society. The General Synod is an assembly of bishops, clergy and laity, and creates the laws of the Church.
King Charles, like previous monarchs going back to Henry VIII, is the “Defender of the Faith”.
If you have seen some UK coins, you will see “Fid Def” (the latin abbreviation) alongside the head of the monarch.
I’ve shared some links at the end of this blog so that you can find more details if you are interested.
The Coronation Service
At the service, which includes anointing with holy oil and a Eucharist, the King will promise to serve faithfully, to rule with justice and mercy, and to maintain the Church of England.
The Archbishops have written about the coronation, and this is what they say:
The Coronation will be a historic moment in the life of our nation, a time to reflect on our history, celebrate who we are and look to our future.
At its centre is a Christian service in which His Majesty will be anointed as King. It will be rooted in longstanding tradition and Christian symbolism.
We pray that this might be a moment for the nation and many round the world to encounter the person of Jesus Christ, the servant King, and hear His call to each of us to serve others.
Our church is part of the Diocese in Europe, which is one of the Dioceses of the Church of England. We are delighted to share this special occasion with you; please join us for a special Coronation service on 7 May 2023, followed by a reception.
The Commonwealth https://www.royal.uk/commonwealth#chapter-wrapper-0
TF1 Saturday 6 May
The Rev’d Canon William Gulliford, Director of Ordinands in the Diocese in Europe, will be commentating for French TV Station TF1, on 6 May, for the Coronation of King Charles III. In preparation for this, and after a long interest in the Coronation, he has put together a study guide to introduce the origins and significance of the Coronation. His hour-long talk explains something of the history of the rite, and draws on the scholarship of a range of experts, Biblical Scholars, Liturgists and Sociologists, to help those who will witness the first coronation for seventy years, enter into its mysteries, beauty and significance.
A new podcast called ‘The Crown Uncovered on the Coronation’ has been launched.
Each episode explores different aspects of the history, theological background and contemporary significance of the Coronation. The series focuses on the Church of England inheritance of the rite and what that means in a pluralistic society.
It is hosted by William Gulliford, Director of Ordinands in the Diocese in Europe and Vicar of St Mark’s, Regent’s Park and the Vicar of St John’s Wood, the Revd Dr Anders Bergquist.