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The Coronation of King Charles is just a few weeks away, with preparations for the historic ceremony well underway.
Following the renovation of the King’s Coronation Chair, the holy oil which will be used to anoint King Charles during the coronation on 6 May has been made sacred in Jerusalem.
The sacred oil will be used as part of the ceremony on 6 May, during which His Majesty will also receive the orb, coronation ring and sceptre, and will be crowned with the majestic St Edward’s Crown and blessed during the historic ceremony.
Camilla will also be anointed with holy oil and crowned, just as the Queen Mother was when she was crowned Queen in 1937.
However, far from any regular oil, the sacred oil has been created using olives harvested from two groves on the Mount of Olives, at the Monastery of Mary Magdalene and the Monastery of the Ascension, and will be used to anoint the King during the ceremony.
The olives were pressed just outside Bethlehem and the oil has been perfumed with sesame, rose, jasmine, cinnamon, neroli, benzoin and amber as well as orange blossom.
The oil is based on what was used at the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, the formula of which has been used for hundreds of years.
A ceremony took place in The Church of the Holy Sepulchre on Friday (3 March), with the holy oil consecrated by the Patriarch of Jerusalem, His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos III, and the Anglican Archbishop in Jerusalem, The Most Reverend Hosam Naoum.
Mr Naoum said he had “felt a deep sense of spiritual experience” during the ceremony.
The archbishop added: “So what has been happening today, I think there is that thread, that this – the consecration of the oil for the enthronement and the coronation – it brings about something of a deep and profound meaning.
“Both to King Charles, to the church and Jerusalem, to the Holy Land and I think to the whole world.”
The King has strong links with the Holy Land because his grandmother Princess Alice, who harboured a Jewish family in Greece during the Second World War, is buried at the Russian Orthodox church of St Mary Magdalene in Jerusalem.
He last visited her tomb in 2020 during a visit to Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories and laid flowers.
Rooted in longstanding traditions and pageantry, the Coronation in May will still retain many of the iconic elements that have been part of every coronation dating back almost 1000 years.
However Buckingham Palace has since revealed it will also "reflect the monarch’s role today and look towards the future”, something Charles himself has been passionate about as he bids to modernise the monarchy.
In keeping with the time honoured tradition of coronations in years gone by, King Charles will formally be crowned at Westminster Abbey with the service conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
The Abbey has witnessed 38 coronations during its lifetime, with the oldest dating back to William the Conqueror on December 25, 1066.
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