Editorial: The Coronation & Prayer for King Charles, Queen Camilla, Bishops, & Each Other


The Coronation & Prayer for King Charles, Queen Camilla, Bishops, & Each Other

Tomorrow the nation and many portions of the world will be tuned in to see the coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla.  It is an apostolic command to pray for him—one that since Common Worship has made all common worship uncommon—gets ignored and not just by staunch anti-monarchists.

What is the Apostolic command? 

“I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.” (1 Timothy 2:1-3)

The Book of Common Prayer puts it this way;

In the Service for Morning Prayer

O LORD, our heavenly Father, high and mighty, King of kings, Lord of lords, the only Ruler of princes, who dost from thy throne behold all the dwellers upon earth: Most heartily we beseech thee with thy favour to behold our most gracious Sovereign Lord, King CHARLES; and so replenish him with the grace of thy Holy Spirit, that he may alway incline to thy will, and walk in thy way. Endue him plenteously with heavenly gifts; grant him in health and wealth long to live; strengthen him that he may vanquish and overcome all his enemies; and finally after this life he may attain everlasting joy and felicity; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

In the Prayer for Christ’s Church Militant in the BCP Order for Holy Communion

ALMIGHTY and everliving God, who by thy holy Apostle hast taught us to make prayers and supplications, and to give thanks, for all men: We humbly beseech thee most mercifully to receive these our prayers, which we offer unto thy Divine Majesty; beseeching thee to inspire continually the universal Church with the spirit of truth, unity, and concord: And grant, that all they that do confess thy holy Name may agree in the truth of thy holy Word, and live in unity, and godly love. We beseech thee also to save and defend all Christian Kings, Princes, and Governors; and specially thy servant CHARLES our King; that under him we may be godly and quietly governed: And grant unto his whole Council, and to all that are put in authority under him, that they may truly and indifferently minister justice, to the punishment of wickedness and vice, and to the maintenance of thy true religion, and virtue.

Prayer for Our Bishops, Clergy, & Each Other

Recent events have shown the nation and the world that the vast majority of the Bishops of the Church of England, the Church in Wales, and the Scottish Episcopal Church are not keen on keeping that portion of their consecration vows that calls them to promise to “banish and drive away all strange and erroneous doctrine.”

The second half of that long prayer in the service for Holy Communion that begins with a petition on behalf of the King and all those who serve under him also calls on us to pray for our bishops, clergy, and each other.

“Give grace, O heavenly Father, to all Bishops and Curates, that they may both by their life and doctrine set forth thy true and lively Word, and rightly and duly administer thy holy Sacraments: And to all thy people give thy heavenly grace; and specially to this congregation here present; that, with meek heart and due reverence, they may hear, and receive thy holy Word; truly serving thee in holiness and righteousness all the days of their life. And we most humbly beseech thee of thy goodness, O Lord, to comfort and succour all them, who in this transitory life are in trouble, sorrow, need, sickness, or any other adversity. And we also bless thy holy Name for all thy servants departed this life in thy faith and fear; beseeching thee to give us grace so to follow their good examples, that with them we may be partakers of thy heavenly kingdom: Grant this, O Father, for Jesus Christ’s sake, our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen.”

It will be a good thing to pray these prayers not only just tomorrow. Insist your clergy use them in public worship and resolve yourselves to do so privately.