Diocese of Portsmouth

His Majesty King Charles III

The Coronation

HM the King will be crowned in a formal Coronation service on May 6 in Westminster Abbey. This is not something that any of us who are younger than 70 have experienced before, so it will be a special occasion. The Royal Family have announced plans for a special weekend of activities that will include shared community lunches and activities to help inspire community spirit. The full timetable is as follows:

  • Saturday 6th May: The Coronation service, Westminster Abbey.
    Churches are welcome to broadcast this service in their buildings. No special licence is needed, so long as you don't charge a fee.
  • Sunday 7th May: The Coronation Big Lunch.
    ommunities, churches and local organisations are invited to share food and celebrate this historic occasion together. In many towns and cities, this may mean closing roads for street parties. Contact your local council for details of that. Or your church could host such a celebration in its building or grounds. 
  • Sunday 7th May: Formal civic services of thanksgiving in our churches.
    Those we know about are listed below. Do let us know if you are planning to hold one.
  • Monday 8th May (Bank Holiday): The Big Help Out
    A day of volunteering and service to highlight the amazing voluntary work that happens all year round. A great opportunity for your church to showcase its care for the local community, with activities that aim to make a difference.

Do consider how your church can make best use these opportunities. And do let us know your plans, so we can help to publicise them.

Upcoming Events

More events

National Church of England resources

  • Information pack. This will help your church to plan activities across the whole weekend, and can be downloaded from here.
  • Resources for Prayer and Worship. There are a series of prayers and liturgical resources designed to help our churches to pray for the King and reflect on themes explored in the Coronation service. You can download them from here. It includes a guidance leaflet for churches, as well as orders of service for Communion, commemorative services of thanksgiving and services of the word.
  • Publicity toolkit. You can download various official logos, posters and web banners from this page, some of which you can customise with details of your church’s activities.
  • Resources to promote community activities. You can discover more about how to use the Coronation weekend to promote your church’s community activities here.

The main page to find Coronation resources on the national C of E website is churchofengland.org/coronation. You may also be interested in signing up for a national C of E webinar about the Coronation weekend. It happens on March 9, and there are details here.

Pray for the King

The national Church of England is producing a book giving you the chance to pray for the King as he prepares for his Coronation. This provides 28 different Bible readings, reflections and prayers, one for each day between Easter Sunday and the day of the Coronation itself. These will be available via Church House Publishing (£1.50 each, £1 for a pack of 50), and digital versions will also be available. You can order them here.

Ring for the King

The Central Council of Church Bell Ringers (CCCBR) has given its bell ringers some advice about ringing church bells to mark the Coronation. Entitled Ring for the King, you can find out more information here.

Sing for the King

The Royal School of Church Music (RSCM) is offering an open invitation for all choirs to sing to celebrate the Coronation. Joanna Forbes L’Estrange, acclaimed singer and composer, has been commissioned by the RSCM to compose a new coronation anthem for this project: The Mountains Shall Bring Peace which is available now. Find out more, and register your choir's involvement, here.

HM the King

Our new King is Charles III, whose accession to the throne was confirmed in a centuries-old ceremony at St James’ Palace on September 10, after the sad death of Queen Elizabeth II. The Proclamation in St James’ Palace was followed by a series of similar Proclamations in counties, cities and towns across the UK – continuing the ancient tradition by which news about a new monarch was spread by word of mouth. HM the King is now Defender of the Faith and the Supreme Governor of the Church of England. Among other things, he will appoint bishops and other senior clergy in the Church, on the advice of the Prime Minister.

Proclamation of the new King

Local Proclamations of the new King took place in Portsmouth, Havant, Fareham, Gosport, Petersfield and Newport on the afternoon of Sunday 11th September. Bishop Jonathan and the Dean of Portsmouth were present for the Proclamation in Guildhall Square, Portsmouth, with other senior clergy attended other Proclamations across our diocese.

The Lord Mayor of Portsmouth, Cllr Hugh Mason, reads the Proclamation in Guildhall Square, Portsmouth
Bishop Jonathan and the Dean of Portsmouth attended the Proclamation in Guildhall Square

Letter to King Charles

Read a letter from Bishop Jonathan to King Charles III, on his accession to the throne (click to enlarge):

A letter from Bishop Jonathan to King Charles III on his accession to the throne