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Queen’s Bermuda service: CEN 12.04.09 p 1. December 10, 2009

Posted by geoconger in Bermuda, Church of England Newspaper.

The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh attended a service of thanksgiving on Nov 25 at Holy Trinity Cathedral in Hamilton to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the settlement of Bermuda.

On the second day of their three-day tour of Bermuda, the Royal couple joined 500 worshippers, local dignitaries and Foreign Secretary David Miliband at a 45-minute choral morning prayer service at the island’s Anglican Cathedral.

The Bishop of Bermuda, the Rt. Rev. Patrick White spoke of the island’s troubled racial history and the church’s tacit support for the slave trade. The church’s support and financial reliance on the labour of slaves was a “dark time” in its history, he observed.

“But where was the church. There in the middle still baptising, burying and so on but not rising above and challenging the process of slavery in any significant way at first.”

Bermuda’s history as having been founded as a commercial venture could be seen today in the materialism and consumerism many of its residents pursued, the bishop said. The lack of spiritual values was contributing to a violence prone younger generation, and a reawakening of racial tensions, Dr. White told the congregation.

The Queen’s first visit to Bermuda took place in 1953. Following the ceremony the Queen toured the naval dockyards, and a state dinner was held at government house at the end of the day. The Royal couple will travel on to Trinidad at the conclusion of their state visit.

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