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Coronation service changed last-minute after pledge of allegiance to King Charles sparks outrage

Coronation service changed last-minute after pledge of allegiance to King Charles sparks outrage

The Church of England has changed the wording after heavy backlash.

In the build up to King Charles III's coronation, the Church of England has made a last minute adjustment in response to public backlash.

Originally, it was announced that the Archbishop of Canterbury would, for the first time ever, invite members of the public to join in on Saturday's (6 May) service by swearing allegiance to the new monarch as an 'Homage of the People'.

But after news of this new addition sparked heavy backlash from Britons, the church decided to change up the wording.

The public will no longer be invited to pledge allegiance to King Charles III.
Ian Shaw / Alamy

Not only did the public heavily criticise the new segment of the coronation ceremony, but allies close to the king were just as unimpressed.

Broadcaster and prominent friend of the king, Jonathan Dimbleby, had said that the idea was 'ill-advised' and not something that Charles would have wanted.

Speaking to the Today Programme, Mr Dimbleby had said: "I can't think of anything he would find more abhorrent.

"He’s never wanted to be revered. He’s never wanted anyone to pay homage to him except in mock terms as a joke."

He also mentioned: "He wants, I think, to feel the people will share in the event and I don’t quite know how this might have happened."

So, on the eve of the coronation, it was decided that the Homage of the People would be altered.

A close friend of the monarch has said that he wouldn't want the pledge.
PA Images/Alamy

Instead, the Archbishop of Canterbury will simply invite people to 'offer their support' simply say 'God save King Charles', rather than pledge their allegiance.

Now Saturday's Homage of the People will go as follows, according to a revised text of the liturgy for the coronation, published by Lambeth Palace:

The Archbishop of Canterbury will say: "I now invite those who wish to offer their support to do so, with a moment of private reflection, by joining in saying ‘God save King Charles’ at the end, or, for those with the words before them, to recite them in full."

The full pledge, for those who are still up for going along with it, reads: "I swear that I will pay true allegiance to Your Majesty, and to your heirs and successors according to law. So help me God."

It was decided that today's 'Home of the People' would replace the traditional Homage of Peers, in which peers who were present at the coronation service would kneel and make a personal pledge to the new monarch.

King Charles III's coronation will be broadcast live on Saturday.
Xinhua / Alamy Stock Photo

Speaking about the 'exciting' new addition to the ceremony last week, a spokesperson for Lambeth Palace had said: "Our hope is at that point, when the Archbishop invites people to join in, that people wherever they are, if they’re watching at home on their own, watching the telly, will say it out loud - this sense of a great cry around the nation and around the world of support for the King."

You can watch King Charles III's coronation service - and decide whether or not you'd like to pledge your allegiance to him - in a live television broadcast direct from Westminster Abbey at 11am.

Featured Image Credit: Ian Shaw / Alamy Stock Photo GRANT ROONEY PREMIUM / Alamy Stock Photo

Topics: King Charles III, News, Royal Family, UK News, Coronation