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Service held in Armagh ahead of King's Coronation

[Press center8] time:2023-06-02 02:42:52 source:BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation) author:Press center5 click:25order

A service of thanksgiving in preparation for the Coronation of King Charles III has been held in St Patrick's Church of Ireland Cathedral in Armagh city.

Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland John McDowell gave the sermon.

He will present the Sovereign's Orb at the coronation service in Westminster Abbey on Saturday.

Archbishop Eamon Martin, the leader of the Catholic Church in Ireland, also took part in Wednesday night's service.

Archbishop McDowell told the congregation that King Charles had "shown himself to be a friend of Northern Ireland."

"Indeed of Ireland north and south - with a very detailed knowledge of our affairs, and more importantly, we have a place close to his heart."

Archbishop Martin said he was grateful to have been invited to participate in the service.

"The dean and the archbishop invited me to come along to represent the Catholic community here in Armagh and in the wider region, just to offer prayers and our thoughts for King Charles on Saturday," he told BBC News NI.

"I'm also very privileged to be able to attend the Coronation myself with the other church leaders here from the island of Ireland and it's a very special moment."

The Dean of Armagh the Very Reverend Shane Forster said the event brought people from across the community together to mark a "significant moment in history".

"After Her late Majesty's reign of 70 years, it's a whole new beginning," he said.

"Most people don't remember a coronation - perhaps they have seen photos or some grainy footage of it.

"It's a very different world that we are in so it is an opportunity for people to come together and to reflect."

During the service the cathedral choir sang a number of pieces sung at previous coronation services.

Northern Ireland Secretary Chris Heaton-Harris and US Consul-General Paul Narain were present.

Church and civic representatives from across Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council also attended.

(editor-in-charge:Press center3)

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