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Why Did King Charles Sit Apart from Royal Family during Easter Service?

King Charles III attended the Easter service at St. George’s Chapel recently but sat away from the Royal Family. This makes people wonder: Why was he sitting separately, and what does this mean for royal traditions in the future?

Fans worried about the King’s health after seeing his photos. But his nephew has shared some information about how the King is doing.

Britain’s King Charles III reacts as he leaves St. George’s Chapel, in Windsor Castle, after attending the Easter Mattins Service, on March 31, 2024. (Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS / AFP) (Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP via Getty Images)

In a significant public appearance since his cancer treatment began, King Charles III attended the traditional Easter Matins service at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle.

The King made his way to the chapel with Queen Camilla. This was his first public appearance since he began cancer treatment two months ago.

The gathered crowd warmly greeted the couple as they waved before entering through the Galilee Porch. The 75-year-old monarch was seen smiling and waving at well-wishers. He arrived in his maroon state Bentley limousine, making a “gentle” return to public life.

The extended Royal Family usually comes together for this occasion. However, this year’s celebration was quieter, with fewer royals showing up.

The occasion was also marked by some significant changes in protocol, including the King seated apart from the rest of the Royal Family.

This wasn’t just a random seating choice—it was a decision influenced by recent events in his life. What led to this change? The answer ties back to the King’s personal journey over the last few months.

This year, the Easter service at St. George’s Chapel looked quite different from previous years. Usually, Easter is a time when the whole Royal Family gathers at Windsor Castle. They attend the church service together and then enjoy a family lunch.

However, this year saw a significant scale-back of these traditions. They adopted an approach some have described as “Easter Lite.”

King Charles and Queen Camilla usually arrive with the family and walk into the chapel together. This time, the two of them came by car alone. This was different from the usual group walk into the chapel that people expected to see.

Mike Tindall and Zara Tindall, accompanied by Mia, 9, and Lena, 4, arrive with the Prince and Princess of Wales and other members of the Royal Family to attend the Easter Sunday church service at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle on 9 April 2023 in Windsor, United Kingdom. Easter Sunday is the focal point of the Royal Family’s Easter celebrations and this will be the first without Queen Elizabeth II. (photo by Mark Kerrison/In Pictures via Getty Images)

Also, the King did not host the usual lunch after the service this year. Normally, the family has lunch together privately after the public service. Skipping this lunch was a break from tradition.

A palace source said the King’s planned attendance was a “sign of things heading the right direction.” It shows a careful move back to normal.

Sources close to the palace say the plans are about slowly getting back to the King’s usual schedule. This includes hosting more guests at the palace as summer comes.

Despite these changes, King Charles took a moment to greet the public outside the church. He maintained a connection with those who came to see him.

One significant change that stood out that day was about King Charles. He was seated separately from the rest of the Royal Family.

Royal Broadcaster Rafe Heydel-Makoo highlighted this during an interview with “GB News.” He noted that the scene of King Charles and Queen Camilla sitting separately during the service “does remind us of the queen in that very same building for the funeral of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.”

During Prince Philip’s funeral service, the world saw Queen Elizabeth II seated alone. She was adhering to social distancing protocols amidst the pandemic. The image of the solitary monarch left a lasting impression on the public as she set an example during challenging times.

As King Charles sat alone during the Easter service, many people were asking why. This question makes us think more about what the changes to this year’s Easter service mean.

Sources reveal that the decision to seat King Charles away from the rest of the family was to ensure his safety during his ongoing cancer treatment.

The King sat at the front of the altar in the chapel, in the Sovereign’s Seat. This spot kept him important in the service but showed he needed to care for his health.

Following medical advice, the Royal Family limited their numbers at St. George’s Chapel to reduce any infection risks for the King. This year, the gathering was notably smaller. It was not only to protect King Charles but also because the Prince and Princess of Wales and their children were absent.

King Charles’ recent health diagnosis has also forced him to scale back on his engagements. This includes this year’s Royal Maundy Service, which Queen Camilla attended on his behalf.

Despite his health challenges, he has not stopped sharing messages that uplift and motivate others. This leads us to a powerful moment recently.

King Charles was unable to attend the Royal Maundy Service in person. However, he shared a heartfelt message that was played at Worcester Cathedral. He spoke about the importance of service to others. This echoed the commitment he made during his Coronation Service.

Britain’s King Charles III sits on the throne wearing St Edward’s Crown during the Coronation Ceremony inside Westminster Abbey in central London on May 6, 2023. The set-piece coronation is the first in Britain in 70 years, and only the second in history to be televised. Charles will be the 40th reigning monarch to be crowned at the central London church since King William I in 1066. Outside the UK, he is also king of 14 other Commonwealth countries, including Australia, Canada and New Zealand. Camilla, his second wife, will be crowned queen alongside him and be known as Queen Camilla after the ceremony. (Photo by Jonathan Brady / POOL / AFP) (Photo by JONATHAN BRADY/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

In his message, the King emphasized, “This act of worship, here in Worcester Cathedral, reminds me of the pledge I made at the beginning of the Coronation Service – to follow Christ’s example ‘not to be served but to serve’. That I have always tried to do and continue to do, with my whole heart.”

He further expressed his hopes for the future. He stated, “It is my special prayer today that Our Lord’s example of serving one another might continue to inspire us and to strengthen all our communities.”

While King Charles focused on recovery, Queen Camilla stepped in to represent him at the service. She distributed Maundy money to pensioners for the first time.

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