Sande Ramage

The Royal Wedding: What's love got to do with it?

By Sande Ramage
April 29, 2011

Only three hours sleep. That'll teach me to twitter endlessly about royal nuptials while quaffing bubbly. Tragic behaviour, but I had to do something to make it through another repeat of 'The Royals at the Abbey'.

While all eyes were on Katie's posh designer number, I couldn't help but notice Will's fancy uniform and the preponderance of military clobber clanking about the place.

Ironic, isn't it, that an itinerant Jewish mystic who preached a message of radical love, even to the point of loving your enemies, should be associated with a church saturated with military memorabilia.

Jesus would have groaned when the Roman Emperor Constantine made Christianity a state religion and got priests running about blessing the machinery of war, which military chaplains are still doing today.

The wedding ceremony probably caused him some restlessness too, but the military flyover, sealing the commitment of church and state, would have had him twirling in complete frustration.

A royal wedding is not much about love; although it's clear Wills and Kate are head over heels for each other. Unfortunately though, they're bit players in a bigger drama that not so subtly embeds the idea that there are people with power, and people without. And the people with the power have a theistic, power hungry God on their side.

This is light years away from the teachings of the vulnerable man who was executed by the Romans. Despite that 'The Royals at the Abbey', with the full co-operation of the church, keep trying to blend two irreconcilable concepts.

No wonder people get fed up with the hypocrisy of religion even while two billion of us got sucked in and watched the show again.


(c) Sande Ramage, from Wairarapa, New Zealand, is an Anglican priest who explores spirituality in a way that is "not restricted by institutional religion". She is an Ekklesia partner. This article is republished with grateful acknowledgements from her blog: Sande can also be followed on Twitter at:

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