Church leaders from multiple denominations and bodies are calling on Christians to pray for King Charles III as he battles an undisclosed form of cancer that was discovered during treatment for an enlarged prostate.
King Charles, 75, has “commenced a schedule of regular treatments” and has postponed “public-facing duties” during this time, Buckingham Palace said.
“His Majesty will continue to undertake State business and official paperwork as usual,” the statement said.
King Charles chose to make his diagnosis public in order “to prevent speculation and in the hope it may assist public understanding for all those around the world who are affected by cancer,” the statement said.
Faith leaders throughout the United Kingdom and the world called on Christians to lift King Charles up in prayer.
“I’m praying for the King and his family -- for God’s comfort and strength in the weeks and months to come. I wish His Majesty a swift and full recovery,” said Justin Welby, the archbishop of Canterbury and the senior bishop of the Church of England.
I’m praying for the King and his family - for God’s comfort and strength in the weeks and months to come. I wish His Majesty a swift and full recovery.— Archbishop of Canterbury (@JustinWelby) February 6, 2024
Stephen Cottrell, the archbishop of York, echoed Welby’s thoughts.
“Please join me in praying for His Majesty the King and all the Royal Family,” Cottrell said. “May he and all who suffer with cancer know the healing presence of God’s love.”
The Evangelical Alliance in the United Kingdom posted a prayer for King Charles on its website.
“Gracious God, we pray for King Charles,” the Evangelical Alliance prayer said. “In this time of sadness and sorrow, we pray that he might know your presence with him. Grant to him time to reflect and rest, and may he know your peace. We thank you for him and we ask that as you were with his mother, so might you lead and bless him. We thank you for the gifts you have given him and the years of public service he has already given.
“May he have wisdom in his decision-making; enable him to lead well and give him advisors of insight and integrity. Give him the energy he needs and may he be a voice for hope and justice. May he run the race well and point others to the love of God. Lord, bless King Charles. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster of the Catholic Church, said he was “saddened to learn that His Majesty King Charles is now facing a time of treatment for cancer.”
“On behalf of the entire Catholic Community in England and Wales, I offer His Majesty our warmest wishes and assurance of steadfast prayers for his full and speedy recovery,” the cardinal said. “God bless the King.”
The Buckingham Palace statement said King Charles had “commenced a schedule of regular treatments, during which time he has been advised by doctors to postpone public-facing duties.”
“The King is grateful to his medical team for their swift intervention, which was made possible thanks to his recent hospital procedure,” the statement said. “He remains wholly positive about his treatment and looks forward to returning to full public duty as soon as possible.”
Image credit: ©Getty Images/Dan Kitwood / Staff
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.
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