Songs of Praise joins Her Majesty The Queen to celebrate 150 years of the Christian charity, Scripture Union. This is the first time since the programme began in 1961 that Her Majesty The Queen has been filmed in a Songs of Praise congregation. Katherine Jenkins hosts the episode, which focuses on a special anniversary service at St Mary’s Church, Islington. Back in 1867, a Christian called Josiah Spiers began teaching the Bible to children in Islington and his passion for making the Christian faith accessible to the young started a movement that grew into Scripture Union. The organisation now operates in over 100 countries around the world, with the simple biblical message ‘God is Love’ remaining central to its mission. For the 150th anniversary service, The Queen joins 300 invited guests to enjoy hymns old and new, including a brand new composition for the occasion by celebrated British hymn writer Bishop Timothy Dudley Smith. Katherine Jenkins also meets the National Director of Scripture Union Tim Hastie-Smith to hear how the charity is making the Bible accessible to children today through everything from holiday camps to computer games. In keeping with the episode’s theme of young people and faith, Pam Rhodes talks to Douglas Gresham, the stepson of CS Lewis, to discover more about the writer’s strong Christian faith and how it influenced his children’s books, which remain as popular as ever around the world.
If you missed the programme, catch up on the BBC iPlayer.