King Charles’ coronation to include invitation to public to swear allegiance

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King Charles’ coronation on Saturday will include an invitation to the public to swear allegiance to the monarch and to his heirs and successors, the Archbishop of Canterbury’s office said, as it published the liturgy to be used for the event.

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The invitation to people to make their homage by participating in a “chorus of millions of voices” was listed among the new elements of an ancient ceremony in a statement from Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby’s office.

That part of the liturgy reads: “All who so desire, in the Abbey, and elsewhere, say together: I swear that I will pay true allegiance to Your Majesty, and to your heirs and successors according to law. So help me God.”

In other firsts, the service will include other languages associated with the British Isles – a prayer in Welsh and a hymn in Welsh, Scottish Gaelic and Irish Gaelic -, and female bishops will be able to participate, the statement said.

Charles, who became monarch of the United Kingdom and 14 other realms on the death of his mother Queen Elizabeth in September, is due to be crowned on May 6 at London’s Westminster Abbey in a ceremony full of pomp, pageantry and religious significance.

“This Coronation celebrates the traditions of over 1000 years,” Welby said on Twitter. “It also features new and revised texts and other elements, and the participation of people of all ages and many faiths and backgrounds – as we look forward together with hope.”

The new parts will reflect the theme of serving others and represent and celebrate the country’s diversity, with members of other faiths set to play an active role in the service for the first time, Welby’s office said.

In the latest details it has released on the event, Buckingham Palace said on Saturday Charles will wear robes of crimson and purple silk velvet that were once worn by his grandfather King George VI at his own coronation in 1937.

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