Duke, Duke, Duke, Duke of…Cambridge
Prince William and Kate Middleton were married today – 3am in my time-zone. I didn’t stay up to watch, but have been catching news clips since I got up this morning.
It’s exciting news! It captures peoples’ imagination. There were hundreds of thousands of people gathered in London to catch a glimpse of the royals in-person. There were supposed to be two billion people who tuned in to watch the ceremony on TV and on the internet. (This is a fair jump from the 750 million who were supposed to have watched William’s parents, Diana and Charles, wed some thirty years ago.)
I would imagine that people pay attention for a variety of reasons. Many may scoff at tradition, when it comes to things like religion, or the monarchy, or parliamentary procedure, and yet it’s something of a ‘glue’ in our culture that can’t be denied. I liked Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams’ reflections on the wedding in the lead-up to the great event. He comments that, in the wedding of William and Kate, they represent something that we all long for, and perhaps even invite something of each of us that we hold as ideals: commitment, generosity, faithfulness.
And as I looked over the order-of-service for the ceremony, I could find elements that were familiar to me and my tradition – hymns, prayers, words that conveyed commitment and intention, and affirmed a set of beliefs which would be lived out.
In the messy-ness of election time, here in Canada, where words are spoken, but not always with sincerity, or jabs are made in order to put down another’s character in the race to gain a position of influence, this ceremony was a breather and moment of celebration and happiness in which many around the world came together to share.
The Royal Wedding was a moment of union between a couple, and perhaps also a moment that drew many others – of different backgrounds and views – together in ways that aren’t often possible. …perhaps a moment of clarity and hope we can all work towards in more of our living.
And, by the way, the royal couple are now to be known as “Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.”