Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Kamehameha and Emma of Hawaii

King Kamehameha IV and his wife Emma were Christian rulers who encouraged the building of Christian schools and hospitals, and who contributed greatly to the spread of Christianity among the Hawaiian people.

The King was worried by the growth of American political influence, directly connected with the work of American missionaries, many of whom openly favored annexation of the islands by the United States. He accordingly invited the Church of England to send missionaries and to establish a presence in Hawaii. (While touring England as a prince, he had attended worship services, and had been favorably impressed.) But, although the King's support of the Church of England was perhaps politically motivated, his support of Christianity was not. He and his wife were earnest in their devotion to both the material and the spiritual welfare of their people. The King personally translated the Book of Common Prayer and much of the Hymnal into Hawaiian.

Their only son died in 1863, and the King died, apparently of grief, on 30 November 1864. The Queen devoted the remainder of her life to charitable endeavors (Queen's Hospital, the largest civilian hospital in Hawaii, is largely her doing). She died in 1885.

Propers for King Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma of Hawaii

The Collect.

O Sovereign God, who raised up (King) Kamehameha (IV) and (Queen) Emma to be rulers in Hawaii, and didst inspire and enable them to be diligent in good works for the welfare of their people and the good of thy Church: Receive our thanks for their witness to the Gospel; and grant that we, with them, may attain to the crown of glory that fadeth not away; through Jesus Christ our Savior and Redeemer, who with thee and the Holy Ghost liveth and reigneth, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Epistle - Acts 17:22-31.

The Holy Gospel - St.Matthew 25:31-40.

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