An American bishop invoked the words of Martin Luther King Jr. during a soaring sermon at the wedding of the U.K.'s Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on Saturday.

"The late Dr. Martin Luther King once said and I quote: 'We must discover the power of love, the power, the redemptive power of love. And when we do that, we will make of this whole world a new world. But love, love is the only way," Bishop Michael Curry said.

"There's power in love. Don't underestimate it. Don't even oversentimentalize it. There is power, power in love."

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The sermon from the Chicago-born bishop was a break from tradition for a royal wedding. Curry was invited to speak by Harry and Markle, an American actress. 

Throughout the sermon, Curry addressed the audience as "brothers and sisters," and peppered his address with historical references and allusions to the African-American spiritual "Down by the Riverside."

"When love is the way, we will lay down our swords and shields down by the riverside to study war no more," he said. 

The sermon drew praise from civil rights activists back in the U.S., including the Rev. Al Sharpton and Bernice King, the youngest daughter of Martin Luther King Jr. 

"Bless you, Bishop Michael Curry," Bernice King wrote on Twitter. 

"Blessings to Megan and Harry in their marriage journey that has now begun," Sharpton tweeted. "Gratitude to Bishop Curry for a stirring message and quoting MLK."