The Queen's Coronation, a timely reminder....
The coronation of Queen Elizabeth II took place on 2 June 1953 in a profoundly Christian ceremony which derives from the imperial coronation ritual of the Holy Roman Emperors dating back to the coronation of Blessed Emperor Charlemagne by Pope St Leo III on Christmas Day 800 AD, and, indeed, beyond.
The addition, mid-way through the ceremony, of a short Protestant promise to uphold the Church of England, its doctrine and discipline, does not detract from the fact that the remainder of the ceremony is profoundly Christian and entirely borrowed from the Roman Catholic Imperial and Royal Coronation ritual, albeit Anglicans still, for the most part, refuse to admit this.
It was no accident that the fourth nobleman to swear fealty and allegiance to her Majesty, after her husband, HRH Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, her uncle, HRH the Duke of Gloucester, and her cousin, HRH the Duke of Kent, was his Grace, Bernard, the Duke of Norfolk, Earl Marshal of England and the principal Roman Catholic nobleman of the realm.
The Catholic Duke of Norfolk was (and still is), as Earl Marshal of England, the principal officer of state responsible for the ceremonies of every Coronation.
See if you can spot his oath of fealty being given in the recording at the bottom of this post.
The surrounding military ritual, ceremony and glamour, coming from all parts of the British Empire and Commonwealth, adds wonderfully, powerfully and movingly to this great Christian Coronation and reminds one of the fact that the coronations of Holy Roman Emperors similarly had a surrounding military ritual, ceremony and glamour, coming from all parts of the Christian Roman Empire and Commonwealth, from a wide range of races, creeds and cultures.
The ancient Roman Christian Empire and the British Empire have this in common and utterly defy and totally demolish the fatuous, and mendacious, claims that they were racist hegemonies based upon "white supremacism" or some such other fatuous nonsense. Both Roman Emperor and British monarch ruled for all their peoples of whatever race, colour or creed, BUT remained themselves Christian monarchs at the head of a Christian empire.
With the US Presidential Inauguration in prospect for January 2017, it is timely to remind ourselves of what the inauguration of a true Head of State and Christian monarch and ruler looks like.
Because of the secularism of the US Founding Fathers, the USA is a forcedly secular state, albeit most Americans are Christians of one sort of another, and thus the Presidential inauguration has an unfortunately secular flavour to it.
By contrast, the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II was an unashamedly Christian celebration and a very sacred and solemn ceremony, moreover, reflecting some of the deepest symbols of the Christian Faith, even despite the addition of a Protestant promise to uphold the Church of England, its doctrine and discipline.
Here is the full recording of the Coronation and surrounding ceremony, ritual and splendour for all to enjoy:
"Zadok the Priest, and Nathan the Prophet, anointed Solomon King. And all the people rejoiced, and said: God save the King! Long live the King! May the King live for ever. Amen! Alleluia!"
1 Kings 1:38–40
God save the Queen!