Following Meghan Markle and Prince Harry‘s announcement that they were returning to England for Queen Elizabeth II‘s Platinum Jubilee, a photo of one of the…
The next Royal Wedding is right around the corner, and while it might not be as much of an affair as William and Harry’s were, it’s sure to be a spectacle. What religion are Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank, for one thing? And if it doesn’t take place at, say, Westminster Abbey, what does that mean? It’s unusual to think of the British Royal Family as regular, normal people, with favorite foods and real last names and even religious practices, but they’re all (presumably) true.
So, since Princess Eugenie is the Duke of York’s daughter, the Queen of England’s granddaughter, and something like ninth in line for the throne, she’s fully a member of the Royal Family. And that would make her a Protestant. If Princess Eugenie’s fiancé was not raised or baptized as a Protestant, he’ll need to do so ahead of officially joining the family. That’s something that has happened as recently as this year, when Meghan Markle officially converted from Catholicism to Protestantism. They’re not too different in terms of policy, but it’s important — and symbolic — to the British Royal Family. After all, they’re quite literally the heads of the church. And now, for a brief history lesson! Super brief, promise.
The British Royal Family have been Protestant since the mid-1500s, when King Henry VIII broke from Rome and declared himself the Head of the Church of England. At the time, it was basically just Catholicism plus divorce, because Henry (1) wanted to be able to do that and (2) wasn’t down with a guy in another city (you know, the Pope) telling him what he could and couldn’t do. When his daughter Mary came into power, she converted the entire country back to Catholicism to honor her mother — Henry’s first wife — who was a devout Catholic. She rounded up heretics and burned them at the stake. Thus, "Bloody Mary."
After Mary, the throne passed to Elizabeth I, her younger half-sister, who also wasn’t down with what happened to her mom — Anne Boleyn, Henry’s second wife — and made her subjects convert back to what people would now call Protestantism. Then England started to pass laws about it all, which ensured that the country would not be Catholic or beholden to Rome, and that the Royal Family would continue to serve as the heads of the church. And it’s basically been that way ever since, though few rulers have been as enthusiastic about it as they were during and shortly after the Renaissance.
So, in conclusion: Princess Eugenie is most definitely a Protestant. Their official website does not discuss Jack Brooksbank’s religious background in detail, but if there were any need for him to make a conversion prior to the wedding, that would surely be announced by the Kensington Royal accounts. He’s described as a "wine merchant" from a prominent UK family, and will reportedly not be taking a royal title after the wedding. Interestingly, it’s also not immediately clear whether their children would inherit titles, as they’re traditionally passed on through the male lineage.
One thing that’s for sure, though: Royal family fans can’t wait to see what the always-stylish Princess Eugenie wears to her wedding. And her older sister, too.
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