Jainism Represented at the Royal Wedding
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Posted by: Pooja Jain
29th April 2011, the day of Royal Wedding of His Highness Prince William of Wales with Miss Catherine Middleton at Westminster Abbey was a Historic Event. It was also a day when for the first time the leaders of Major Nine Faiths, namely Christian, Baha’i, Buddhist, Hindu, Islam, Jain, Jewish, Sikh and Zoroastrian were invited by her Majesty the Queen to the wedding Service at Westminster Abbey along with the Royal Families, Government Senior Ministers, Celebrities and other important persons.
Dr Natubhai Shah, Chair/CEO of Jain Network (www.jainnetwork.com) was invited to the wedding cermony to represent the Jains. To read his first hand account of the wedding please click on the links below.
Royal Wedding Invitiation
In Picture: Dr Natubhai Shah at the Royal Wedding
By Dr Natubhai shah
29th April 2011, the day of Royal Wedding of His Highness
Prince William of Wales with Miss Catherine Middleton at Westminster Abbey was
a Historic Event that brought Joy and Happiness to the people of Britain and
many throughout the world. It was also a day when for the first time the leaders
of Major Nine Faiths, namely Christian, Baha’i, Buddhist, Hindu, Islam, Jain,
Jewish, Sikh and Zoroastrian were invited by her Majesty the Queen to the
wedding Service at Westminster Abbey along with the Royal Families, Government
Senior Ministers, Celebrities and other important persons.
I was delighted to attend this unforgettable ceremony as a Jain. The
whole programme was meticulously organised. Rather going to the Abbey in car, I
travelled by public transport. When the people knew that I was attending the ceremony,
some people in the train touched me and took photographs. At Westminster tube
station, I was received by a police cadet and escorted to the place of security
check. I was received by a clergy
volunteer at the Abbey and escorted to my seat by 9-15am.
At the Westminster Abbey, the Clergy came in magnificent gold
ecclesiastical robes, choir boys in red robes and white collars, guests in
lounge suits and national dresses, ladies in beautiful dresses and unique hats.
We realised that we were sitting with the British Royal Family, Middleton
family and friends, Diplomatic Corps, Foreign Dignitaries, Foreign Royal
Families, Cabinet, Service Chiefs, Faith Representatives, Celebrities and other
guests. It was spectacular scene that will cherish in one’s memory for ever.
The procession of the Queen, the Clergy and the Bride; the music and the
atmosphere were magnificent. The service was serene, sacred and dignified. It
was in simple language. The Dean of Westminster, the Archbishop of Canterbury,
the Bishop of London and the Bride’s Father spoke and used the words praying
for the spiritual and physical happiness for the couple. The words included
advice to the couple: presenting their
bodies as living sacrifice to the God; genuine love to one another, hold fast
what is good and hate what is evil; rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering,
persevere in prayer; contribute to the needs of the saints, hospitality to
strangers; compassion and forgiveness, humility and living in harmony with one
another. The words echoed the Jain way
We were given prominent seats, just behind
the Archbishops and were invited for a reception by the Dean of Westminster
after the ceremony.
We will never forget the experience of attending
this ceremony. The invitation to attend the Royal Wedding has brought Jain
awareness to the wider world and I feel honoured and humbled to witness this
unique ceremony as a Jain representative. This was a genuine, modern wedding we
can all recognise, and a happy couple whose individuality was undimmed by the
pomp and magnificence of the grand royal event. It has won the hearts of
millions people and made the Britain proud.
We pray for the happiness
and bliss for the everlasting wedded life to this Royal Couple, our future King
and Queen. We also thank Her Majesty, the Queen to invite us for this occasion