God Save the King

The Queen has died, aged 96. The palace released the following notice from her heir and successor King Charles III:

The death of my beloved Mother, Her Majesty The Queen, is a moment the greatest sadness for me and all members of my family.

We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished Sovereign and a much-loved Mother. I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the Realms and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world.

During this period of mourning and change, my family and I will be comforted and sustained by our knowledge of the respect and deep affection in which The Queen was so widely held.

Official guidance for prayer and liturgy has been given by the Church of England. The collects below are suitable for private devotion:

1 – A prayer of thanksgiving

Eternal God, our heavenly Father, we bless your holy name for all that you have given us in and through the life of your servant Queen Elizabeth.
We give you thanks: for her love of family and her gift of friendship; for her devotion to this nation and the nations of the Commonwealth;
for her grace, dignity and courtesy;
and for her generosity and love of life.We praise you for: the courage that she showed in testing times; the depth and of her Christian faith;
and the witness she bore to it in word and deed.Accept our thanks and praise, we pray,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

2 – A prayer of commendation

God our creator and redeemer,
by your power Christ conquered death
and returned to you in glory.
Confident of his victory
and claiming his promises,
we entrust your servant Elizabeth into your keeping
in the name of Jesus our Lord,
who, though he died, is now alive
and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God now and for ever.  Amen.

3 – A prayer for those who mourn

Father of all mercies and God of all consolation,
you pursue us with untiring love
and dispel the shadow of death with the bright dawn of life.
Give courage to the Royal Family in their loss and sorrow.
Be their refuge and strength, O Lord;
reassure them of your continuing love
and lift them from the depths of grief
into the peace and light of your presence.
Your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ,
by dying has destroyed our death,
and by rising, restored our life.
Your Holy Spirit, our comforter,
speaks for us in groans too deep for words.
Come alongside your people,
remind them of your eternal presence
and give them your comfort and strength. Amen.

4 – A prayer for the new King

Lord God,
you provide for your people by your power,
and rule over them in love:
Grant to your servant our King
the Spirit of wisdom and discernment,
that being devoted to you with his whole heart, he may so wisely govern,
that in his time we may live in safety and in peace;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

I revered Her Majesty deeply and emotionally. Earlier this year I wrote a short encomium on the occasion of her Platinum Jubilee. It must now serve as eulogy. The Queen is dead, long live The King.


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