When I heard the news that the Queen had died I, like the nation as a whole, felt an immediate sense of loss. That was quickly followed by a range of other emotions and thoughts. As we begin to process what has happened, I offer these thoughts for prayer and reflection.
- To pray for our nation during a time of grief and change. The Queen has led through considerable amounts of change – the grief people will feel about her will be symbolic about our tie to the past as well as to the woman she was.
- We think of those closest to the Queen and pray for her family and household as they mourn.
- The Queen was a woman of deep Christian faith. Her speech each Christmas was arguably the most listened to Christmas sermon each year. She preached the hope of Christ born to our world. She recognised her calling and followed that with unwavering humility. She also had a good sense of humour – do you remember the opening ceremony to the 2012 Olympics!
- As Baptists we have advocated a separation between church and state, we offer a position of holding the state to account especially on issues such as religious freedom. Nevertheless, I recognise that the Queen has led from a position of humble public service and give thanks for her significant contribution to our nation.
We thank you for the life of your servant Elizabeth;
for her faithfulness to your gospel
through her words, example and humble service.
We remember with gratitude her gentle diplomacy,
her wise leadership and guidance in a changing world,
and the glimpses into her sense of humour.
She has been a gracious and godly Queen,
and so we commend her back to you:
May she rest in peace and rise in glory.
We pray too for the Royal Family
as they grieve over the loss of a mother, grandmother, great grandmother,
especially for Charles as he becomes King,
and we lift up to you all in this country and across the commonwealth
in this time of national mourning and change.
Bless us with your peace, we pray,
today and always,
General Secretary of our Baptist Union