Pope Francis gifts King Charles ‘true cross’ to be used in coronation ceremony - what is it?

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A gift to King Charles from the Pope is set to play a key role in the coronation ceremony, but what is it?

In just a few short weeks, King Charles and Queen Consort Camilla will be officially crowned in a coronation ceremony set to take place inside Westminster Abbey. The coronation will be the first in the UK since 1953, when King Charles’ mother, Queen Elizabeth II, ascended to the throne.

The coronation is set to include a weekend of events, including a coronation concert, bank holiday and the coronation ceremony itself. On coronation day, King Charles and Queen Camilla will travel in the Diamond Jubilee State Coach on their way to the ceremony and use the 260-year-old Gold State Coach for the return journey.

The coronation will be the largest military ceremonial operation in 70 years, featuring more than 6,000 members of the UK’s armed forces and nearly 400 armed forces. It will also feature personnel from at least 35 Commonwealth countries.

The coronation will also feature parts of ‘the true cross’, a gift sent to King Charles from Pope Francis - but what is and what role will it play?

What is the ‘true cross’ sent to King Charles by Pope Francis?

The relics of what is known as the True Cross were given to King Charles by Pope Francis, as a coronation gift. It is fragments said to be from the cross on which Jesus was crucified.

What role will the ‘true cross’ play in the coronation of King Charles? 

Fragments said to be from the cross on which Jesus was crucified will be included in a newly made Cross of Wales used at the head of the coronation procession in Westminster Abbey. The cross, made by silversmith Michael Lloyd, is inscribed with the words of St David, patron saint of Wales.

King Charles on a visit to RAF College Cranwell. (Photo: MOD)King Charles on a visit to RAF College Cranwell. (Photo: MOD)
King Charles on a visit to RAF College Cranwell. (Photo: MOD)

When is the coronation of King Charles III?

The coronation of King Charles III, will take place on Saturday, May 6. The event will be followed by a coronation concert on Sunday, May 7 and a bank holiday on Monday, May 8.

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