The Archbishop of Canterbury has revealed that Meghan Markle’s divorce has been treated by the Church of England like any other similar situation.
Expressing his excitement ahead of the royal wedding this spring, the Most Reverend Justin Welby said that official procedures have been undertaken by the church in preparation for the big day.
“It’s not a problem,” the most senior clergyman in the Church of England said. “The Church of England has clear rules with dealing with that and we’ve dealt with that.
“We went through that as anyone would who will officiate at a wedding where someone has been separated and a partner is still living.”
Welby will officiate Harry and Meghan’s wedding, which takes place at Windsor Castle on 19 May. The former American actress, who has been confirmed as a Protestant, will also be asked about “past hurts” to ensure mistakes have been healed.
The ceremony will be consistent with the guidelines of the General Synod, the Church of England’s legislative body, which agreed in 2002 to allow ”remarriage in church of divorced people whose former partners were still alive.”
Asked about his views on having the first mixed-race member of the royal family, the Archbishop said: “The wedding is going to be wonderful. I’m looking forward to it enormously.
“I think one of the places I started when I was writing [the Re-imagining Britain book] was the excitement of living in a much more diverse country than the one I grew up in 45, 50 years ago, and what a gift that can be rather than a threat.”
As announced by Kensington Palace earlier in the month, the Dean of Windsor, The Rt Revd. David Conner will be in charge of conducting the marriage service at St George’s Chapel. The Archbishop of Canterbury will then officiate the service as the couple make their marriage vows.