Queen Elizabeth II, the longest-reigning monarch in British historical past, has died on the age of 96.
All through the course of her unprecedented reign, Queen Elizabeth II spoke ceaselessly about her private Christian religion. Delivering her first Christmas Tackle in 1952, a practice began by her grandfather, King George V, the Queen requested prayer for her upcoming coronation.
“I wish to ask you all, no matter your faith could also be, to wish for me on that day,” she stated, “to wish that God could give me knowledge and power to hold out the solemn guarantees I shall be making, and that I could faithfully serve Him and also you, all the times of my life.”
As one of many world’s most recognizable and celebrated leaders for greater than seven a long time after that Christmas, the Queen demonstrated how one can maintain one’s Christian religion private, non-public, inclusive, and compassionate whereas serving in a world, public position underneath intense scrutiny from just about each sector.
Queen Elizabeth II inherited spiritual duties because the Defender of the Religion and Supreme Governor of the Church of England, titles vested within the reigning British monarch since Henry VIII renounced the Papacy in 1534. At her coronation in 1953, Her Majesty took an oath to “preserve and protect inviolably the settlement of the Church of England, and the doctrine worship, self-discipline, and authorities thereof, as by regulation established in England.”
Her duties included appointing archbishops, bishops, and deans of the Church of England as suggested by the prime minister. In 1970, she grew to become the primary sovereign to inaugurate and handle the church’s Common Synod in particular person, a apply she continued each 5 years after diocesan elections.
Three weeks after her coronation, the Queen adopted historic precedent and swore to keep up the Church of Scotland, honoring her obligation to “protect the settlement of the true Protestant faith as established by the legal guidelines made in Scotland.” The Church of Scotland is Presbyterian and acknowledges solely Jesus Christ as “King and Head of the Church,” leading to Her Majesty’s lack of official title and participation as an everyday member.
Greater than custom
However the Queen’s religion was greater than the product of well mannered deference to historic custom. All through her reign, she articulated the significance of her religion and advisable it to her topics.
“For me the teachings of Christ and my very own private accountability earlier than God present a framework through which I attempt to lead my life,” she said in 2000. “I, like so a lot of you, have drawn nice consolation in tough instances from Christ’s phrases and instance.”
In 2002 the Queen endured a painful yr of private losses with the deaths of her sister, Princess Margaret, and the Queen Mom. In her annual Christmas handle that yr, she spoke of how her religion had sustained her.
“I do know simply how a lot I rely by myself religion to information me by means of the nice instances and the dangerous,” she said. “Every day is a brand new starting. I do know that the one technique to stay my life is to attempt to do what is correct, to take the lengthy view, to present of my greatest in all that the day brings, and to place my belief in God.”
The Queen constantly prolonged her affect to acknowledge and have fun spiritual variety and tolerance in the UK, the Commonwealth of Nations, and all through the world. Her Majesty’s Christmas and Commonwealth Day messages typically addressed the theme of interfaith concord and respectful tolerance. Leaders of assorted faiths and denominations recurrently attended royal ceremonies, together with weddings and companies of thanksgiving, on the invitation of the Queen and her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh.
Celebrating her Diamond Jubilee in 2012, the Queen attended a multifaith reception at Lambeth Palace, hosted by the Archbishop of Canterbury, that includes the leaders of eight faiths in the UK together with Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, and Hinduism. At this occasion, the Queen stated, “Religion performs a key position within the identification of thousands and thousands of individuals, offering not solely a system of perception but additionally a way of belonging. It might probably act as a spur for social motion. Certainly, spiritual teams have a proud monitor document of serving to these within the biggest want, together with the sick, the aged, the lonely and the deprived. They remind us of the duties we’ve got past ourselves.”
The Queen’s efforts had been acknowledged in 2007 by the Three-Faiths Discussion board, a company devoted to constructing understanding and lasting relationships between individuals of all faiths and beliefs. It offered Her Majesty with the Sternberg Interfaith Gold Medallion, awarded to people who’ve helped promote peace and tolerance amongst individuals of various faiths.
Born on April 21, 1926, Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor was the firstborn of the Duke and Duchess of York and the primary grandchild of the reigning monarch, King George V, who reportedly delighted within the considerate, well-behaved youngster recognized by household as Lilibet. Elizabeth’s father acceded to the throne in 1936 as King George VI when his brother, King Edward VIII, abdicated with a view to marry divorcée Wallis Simpson.
Because the inheritor presumptive, Elizabeth was tutored privately and served within the Auxiliary Territorial Service throughout World Struggle II. In 1947 she married Philip Mountbatten, of Greek and Danish royal lineage. Their union lasted 73 years till his demise in 2021 and produced 4 kids: Charles, Prince of Wales and inheritor obvious; Anne, Princess Royal; Andrew, Duke of York; and Edward, Earl of Wessex. Along with her kids, the Queen is survived by eight grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.
From the start of her reign, the Queen constantly cited references from Scripture, notably in her annual Christmas broadcasts.
“To what larger inspiration and counsel can we flip,” she requested, “than to the imperishable fact to be discovered on this treasure home, the Bible?”
In her 2016 handle, Her Majesty explained, “Billions of individuals now observe Christ’s educating and discover in him the guiding gentle for his or her lives. I’m considered one of them as a result of Christ’s instance helps me see the worth in doing small issues with nice love, whoever does them and no matter they themselves imagine.”
Relationship with Billy Graham
Her pal and confidant Billy Graham attested to the Queen’s love for the Bible, in addition to the power and depth of her Christian religion, in his autobiography, Simply As I Am.
“Nobody in Britain has been extra cordial towards us than Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II,” Graham wrote. “Virtually each event I’ve been together with her has been in a heat, casual setting, akin to a luncheon or dinner, both alone or with a couple of members of the family or different shut pals.”
They not often publicized their conferences or leveraged their relationship professionally, however the two loved a friendship that endured for greater than 60 years till Graham’s passing in 2018. He wrote, “I all the time discovered her very within the Bible and its message.”
The Queen’s love of the Bible and its gospel message led to her participation within the publication of a particular ebook to commemorate her ninetieth birthday. Titled The Servant Queen and the King She Serves, coauthored by Catherine Butcher and Mark Greene, this overview of Her Majesty’s Christian religion was revealed by Bible Society UK, for whom the Queen serves as patron, together with HOPE and the London Institute for Up to date Christianity.
Her Majesty personally wrote the foreword, thanking readers for his or her prayers and good needs. “I’ve been—and stay—very grateful to … God for His steadfast love. I’ve certainly seen His faithfulness,” she wrote.
The ebook was distributed to 1000’s of church buildings throughout the UK and all through many Commonwealth nations previous to the Queen’s birthday in 2016. The ebook proved so widespread that the Bible Society needed to print one other 150,000 copies to fulfill demand.
Fulfilling her vow
Half princess and half pope, each guardian and great-grandmother, diplomat and disciple, Her Majesty the Queen was the calm that carried on, stabilizing her nation and the Commonwealth throughout tumultuous durations of historic change and technological development.
“In the end, monarchy factors past itself to the majesty of God,” wrote Ian Bradley, professor on the College of St Andrews Faculty of Divinity. “It encourages the God-given human schools of reverence, loyalty and worship. It derives its true sanction and authority from above fairly than from under.”
Queen Elizabeth II was such a monarch. Bridging the twentieth and twenty first centuries, modernity and postmodernity, Her Majesty credited her private religion in God and perception in Christ as her anchor amid the various storms, each private and non-private, that she endured. To the tip, she fulfilled her sacred coronation vows to God, dwelling faithfully and serving these entrusted to her care.
Dudley Delffs is the writer of The Religion of Queen Elizabeth.