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Charles, King and Martyr

January 30, 2013

Q: How many people have been officially canonized in the Anglican Communion since the Reformation and break with the See of Rome?

A: One.

King Charles I, by Daniel Mytens (1631)

King Charles I, by Daniel Mytens (1631)

King Charles I, Saint Charles Stuart, was officially added to the Kalendar of the Book of Common Prayer by a convocation of Canterbury and York on 29 May 1660, twelve years after his execution.

Charles was a devoted episcopalian, refusing to budge or compromise with the Puritans on the structure of the Church of England and preferring to die than to abandon the Church as he inherited it and remove the office of Bishop and the Apostolic Succession.

An account of the Execution of King Charles, 30 January 1648.

O Lord we offer unto thee all praise and thanks for the glory of Thy grace that shined forth in Thine anointed servant Charles; and we beseech Thee to give us all grace that by a careful studious imitation of this Thy blessed Saint and Martyr, that we may be made worthy to receive benefit by his prayers, which he, in communion with the Church Catholic, offers up unto Thee for that part of it here Militant, through thy Son, our Blessed Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen. (“Private Forms of Prayer,” 1660, The Rt. Rev. Brian Duppa, Bishop of Salisbury and Winchester.)

King Charles’ Meditations Upon His Death, the final section of his spiritual autobiography, the Eikon Basilike,  courtesy of Project Canterbury.

I go from a corruptible, to an incorruptible Crown; where no disturbance can be, no disturbance in the World.

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