This is me, Eccles

This is me, Eccles
This is me, Eccles

Sunday, 20 May 2018

How to preach a Royal Wedding sermon

Some day you may be invited to preach the sermon at a royal wedding, at which some lesser piece of royalty is joined in holy matrimony with a celebrity. There are not many unattached princes of marriageable age around at present, but who knows, Prince Andrew may have hit it off with Oprah Winfrey. So be prepared!

Michael Curry preaching

Don't be discouraged if someone looks the other way and turns off his hearing aid.

"Why me?" you ask. "Why can't Welby do it himself? All right, he's a great bore. But how about Nurse Sarah Mullally, the bishopess of London? Ten minutes of politically correct waffle, that will go straight to the heart, won't it?"

No. For whatever reason, the lot has fallen on you. An estimated 2 billion people will be listening in, so you must DUMB DOWN. No learned discourse on the spirituality of the lesser kings of Judah, or the precise translation of some particular word in the synoptic gospels. No, they want SEX

I'm sorry. They want LOVE. Statistically, it has been shown that nearly 30% of people who get married are actually in love. Now, no C.S.-Lewisite subtleties about "Four loves" - Storge, Philia, Agape, Eros. Just bundle them all together and dig out some quotations about Love.

Obviously Jesus talked a lot about Love, and you can mention this. But don't forget to bring in some more important theologians such as Martin Luther King, and - if you like - Groucho Marx and Tommy Cooper ("Heard the one about two aerials meeting on a roof, falling in love, and getting married? The ceremony was rubbish but the reception was brilliant.")

Tommy Cooper

The ideal preacher, but sadly no longer with us.

After about 5 minutes of LOVE we can move onto another theme. Two ideas in one sermon may seem a little excessive, but let's use FIRE as well. Without fire there would have been no industrial revolution. Without fire, there would have been no cars to bring you to church. Without fire the fire brigade would be unemployed. Keep going.

Somewhere about now you can throw in some Biblical reference. Maybe to Balm in Gilead (also taken up by Edgar Allan Poe in "The Raven"?). Of course this will be over the heads of the non-religious.

Austen Ivereigh goes balmy

When Mr Catholic Voices went a little balmy.

If you have any say in the wedding hymns, you can get them to sing that old Gospel Song "Stan Balmy", which seems to consist of this magic phrase repeated 946 times. This is what we call liturgical coherence.

Oh, slip in a reference to Teilhard de Chardin, even if you do call him "Tired Day Chardan". This will go down well with your celebrity audience, who will mostly think he's a fashion-designer.

Anyway, finish off now. Get back to LOVE, and hope that the happy couple haven't already got tired of each other. Money can't buy me love. Love is a many-splendoured thing. Thirty-love (one for Serena Williams there).... There is power in LOVE, which is why it is like FIRE.

Brighton pavilion

A new palace for the Duke of Sus-sus-sus-sex.

See, easy, wasn't it?

20 comments:

  1. Yesterday's shenanigans raise at least two important questions:

    1. Have all the members of that choir now been rounded up and charged with murdering 'Stand By Me'?

    2. Has Her Madge been told it's now safe to remove those earplugs from the royal lugholes?

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  2. White people now feel the need to bring in as many people of color as possible to make themselves legitimate. The only really racist people I have ever met in my entire life have been really wealthy white people. Luckily I"m not around them that often. Most people, before President Obama ruled, were not racist, but post-Obama, many people are racist, white and black. White people reject their heritage, they've been just so guilted about it for so long, they have abandoned it and feel that if they just bring in some black folks, nobody will notice they are white and blame them for it.
    An English royal wedding is no longer like an English royal wedding. Heck I can hear sermons for the everyman like that in any American town or city. I heard 10 seconds of this one, heard St. Martin Luther King invoked and said, I'm out.
    Meghan Markle is half black. The minister was flown allll the way in from the states and he's black. England is having an identity crisis, but no worries, the new arrivals have no such identity crisis.

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  3. "Prince Andrew may have hit it off with Oprah so be prepared." Lol!

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    1. So when she becomes President, the first Gentleman could be Prince Andy! Then they change that law about "native born" and voila, America is healed! I wonder how he would get along with VP de Generes.

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  4. no no no no yes

    I would have liked to see the council at Dibley discussing and planning the arrangements.

    If only Geraldine had been the celebrant !

    Oh, for an Alice and Geraldine joke !

    (and even Reg Dwight was there !)

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  5. I really loved that reference to "Tired Day Chardin". For me, that's today's chuckle of the day!

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  6. Sad that this is no joke. Here we have and adulterous wedding that the whole world thinks is wonderful . Except God.

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    1. Was the first marriage of HRH the Duchess of Sussex in the Church? I doubt it, since her first husband was Jewish. Also, she was not baptized until she was preparing to enter the Royal Family. I believe that the Pauline Privilege would apply in this case.

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    2. First marriage was on a beach and took 15 mins

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    3. Has the Archbishop of Canterbury the power to allow an Anglican to exercise the Pauline privilege. Surely such a matter requires the authority of the Holy See? I hope that I am wrong.

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    4. The first marriage is both valid (and ratified) given that neither party was a Catholic, but non-sacramental as neither were baptised.

      The Archbishop of Canterbury would need to put himself and the entire English church under the authority of the Roman Pontiff and then apply to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to examine the individual case and, if it is warranted, to submit the petition to the Supreme Pontiff requesting the favour.

      As part of the examination of this individual case Meghan's first husband would need to be questioned as to whether he would wish to stay married to her!

      Perhaps the Archbishop (and all the bishops) would be willing to be one with Rome once again over the matter of a marriage of a Royal Highness named Harry!

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    5. I think the Archbishop of Canterbury has the power to allow Anglicans to do whatever they want. At least retrospectively or under force majeure

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  7. Give him points Eccles. The Blues Brothers rattle the Windsors. All that talk of lifelong fidelity got Mrs. Parker Bowles hiding under her candy floss cartwheel.

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  8. Almost regret not having listened to Bishop Curry's sermon-- missed a gem, evidently. TdC is what perhaps passes for 'ecumenism' in the Episcopal Church.

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  9. Mrs. Trevor Engelson remains the wife of Trevor, as he is still very much alive. There is another word for the relationship between the prince and Mrs. Engelson. You can find out what is is in Matthew 5 and 19.

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  10. There was nothing about marriage because the preacher thinks that two people of the same sex can be married to one another.

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    Replies
    1. Having to sit through the entirety of Michael Curry's speech would have been bad for my tikka.

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  11. William was smart enough to marry into a family. He's going to have be the example for his younger brother, since no one else in the Windsor family (except Uncle Edward and the Queen) understands fidelity.
    It is hard to think for one moment that Harry and Meghan had actually ever previously been part of any religious or cultural occasions from which they were familiar with the choir, ministers, soloists. How often have they worshipped in the Coptic Church ? All sound and fury signifying nothing.
    How very sad for the bride's mother, for whom I see nothing for her to be proud of, nor has she "acquired" inlaws who will have anything to do with her in the future.

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  12. Everybody has nice things to say about the bride's mother, and lovely woman she may be. But if Meghan Markle was not baptized, the woman failed her primary responsibility to her own child and jeopardized the child's soul.

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