In a more sedate manner, although no less glorious, at St Andrew’s on Sunday evening celebrations were also afoot this time nothing to do with animals, but rather an Evensong to mark the Queen’s Jubilee.
Although it was Evensong not a Coronation with Communion, as I happen to have a copy of the service which was used on 2nd June 1953, we used parts of it for the service, we would have used more parts of it had I thought to look at it before all the music choices had been made and music ordered – that will have to wait for the Sapphire celebration!
One of the great things about the service was again the number of people who were not members of St Andrew’s who came along, a small group of them having seen it in the local paper.
John Mansefield was the Poet Laureate at the time of the Queen’s Coronation and wrote these verses for the occasion, they really do speak of another time:
This Lady whom we crown was born
When buds were green upon the thorn
And earliest cowslips showed;
When still unseen by mortal eye
One cuckoo tolled his “Here am I,”
And over little glints of sky,
In rain-pools whence the trickles flowed,
The small snipe clattered wing.
The swallows were upon the road,
Nought but the cherry-blossom snowed,
The promise was on all fields sowed
Of Earth’s beginning Spring.
Now that we crown her as our Queen
May love keep all her pathways green,
May sunlight bless her days;
May the fair Spring of her beginning
Ripen to all things worth the winning,
The very surest of our praise
That mortal men attempt,
May this old land revive and be
Again a star set in the sea,
A Kingdom fit for such as she
With glories yet undreamt.