Churches commemorate historic coronation in Sunday services

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The celebrations for the coronation of King Charles III continued in churches the length and breadth of the country on Sunday.

Many churches have planned services of prayer and thanksgiving, and special commemorative Evensongs following the King's coronation at Westminster Abbey on Saturday.

Some churches are also preparing to hold a 'Coronation Big Lunch' to share food and fun together.

Blackburn Cathedral is among them, with their Coronation Big Lunch being followed later in the day by a celebratory Choral Evensong that will also be livestreamed on its YouTube channel.

In a message released on the eve of the coronation weekend, the Bishop of Blackburn, Rt Rev Philip North, said he hoped that people would enjoy the celebrations while also reflecting on the Christian message of service that was at the heart of the King's coronation.

"Jesus taught his disciples to be servants. He did that as he washed their feet at the table of the last supper. He did it above all on the cross when he gave his life away, he made of his life a gift to others. And that's the call of a Christian, to make of our lives a gift to the world," he said. 

"King Charles III will be doing that as he's crowned, making of his life a gift as servant of nation and commonwealth. Churches around Lancashire seek to do that in their common life as they serve their neighbourhoods and their communities especially the poorest and the most vulnerable."

He added: "I hope that you and everyone across the nation, and across the globe, really enjoys this Coronation weekend and delight in the spectacle.

"But I also hope people have a chance to think a bit deeper, to think what's really going on, Charles giving away his life as servant, and inviting us to do the same."

The Church of England held a special online service on Sunday morning commemorating the coronation. The service was livestreamed from the Tower of London and led by chaplain, Canon Roger Hall.

St Paul's Cathedral will also hold a "festive" Choral Evensong in celebration of the coronation with specially selected prayers, Bible readings and celebratory works by Parry and Handel.

The Salvation Army Histon Corps in Cambridge was planning to open its doors on Sunday evening to livestream the King's Coronation Concert.

On Sunday afternoon, the Salvation Army band will be playing in the Precincts in Canterbury for an hour as part of celebrations organised by Canterbury Cathedral.

Many churches already pray for the monarch every Sunday as part of their prayers of intercession.

Churches across the UK joined in the celebrations on Saturday by livestreaming the coronation in their buildings and holding coronation-themed events like tea parties, music concerts and flower festivals.

On the Monday Bank Holiday, many Christians will be rolling up their sleeves to join the Big Help Out, a volunteering initiative organised by a coalition of charities as part of the coronation weekend and supported by churches and faith leaders.