This year we celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Reigning for 70 years, she is Britain’s longest-serving monarch. Born on 21 April 1926 in London, Elizabeth was the first child of the late Duke and Duchess of York. Since she was third in line to the throne, it was not expected that her father (George VI) would become King or that she would become Queen.
Princess Elizabeth married Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh, in Westminster Abbey on 20 November 1947. She had to collect clothing coupons for her wedding dress, as the nation was still on rationing after the war!
They had four children, eight grandchildren and eleven great-grandchildren, and were together for 73 years, until his death last year. During her reign, there have been 15 prime ministers from Sir Winston Churchill to Boris Johnson, and nearly 200 prime ministers in the wider Commonwealth!
Elizabeth took up the position of Queen of the United Kingdom on the 6 February 1952, at the age of just 25, following the death of her father, King George VI.
Elizabeth was crowned Queen in Westminster Abbey the following year on 2 June 1953. She was presented with a Bible, and was told, as in all previous coronations since 1689, ‘We present you with this book, the most valuable thing that this world affords. Here is wisdom; this is the royal law; these are the lively oracles of God.’ She continues the royal line of United Kingdom monarchs which began in 1603 with King James I.
‘Forgiveness lies at the heart of the Christian faith. It can heal broken families, it can restore friendships and it can reconcile divided communities. It is in forgiveness that we feel the power of God’s love.’ - Queen Elizabeth II