I went to church with the Queen today. At this morning’s Easter service at the magnificent Aarhus Cathedral, Queen Margrethe II was present, along with the Prince Consort, and the Crown Prince Couple, Frederik and Mary. (The little Prince Christian was not there.) This is not unusual; she nearly always attends church when she’s in Aarhus, but this was actually the first time I saw either of them in person, sitting no more than 10 metres away.
The cathedral was full, as it probably would be on any Easter Sunday, Queen or not. And it was a beautiful service with a good sermon. Christian Thodberg (who also wed the Crown Prince Couple and christened Prince Christian) made it clear that nothing we may do or say has any meaning without the fact that Jesus rose from the grave. The greeting “The Lord is Risen,” still used in the Eastern Church, expresses not only faith in Jesus, but hope that the conquest of death is real for each and every individual.
I enjoy living in a Monarchy where the Queen is actually a personal Christian; this is a well-known fact. I also noted that Princess Mary bowed her head during prayers and sang along on the hymns, as did everyone. Whether this is just a formality I cannot tell and probably should not wonder too much about. But the royal family still do convey that perfect blend of calm, unpretentiousness, and dignity. I don’t see myself turning Republican anytime soon.
When the Queen joins the congregation for Eucharist she underlines that before God we are all equal. We are all dependent on grace. All have sinned, and none of us can conquer death, except through Jesus Christ. The Lord is Risen. Happy Easter.