A very happy, most enjoyable birthday Ma’am.
I recall not only mother’s parents and her brother, who lived close by, but neighbours too had called at our house when I was five years old. And they were all crammed into our lounge!! Dad had recently been up at the roof to nail a weird metal frame by the gutter and point it to the sky, then trail and fix a wire down to small boxes on the skirting boards in the front and rear sitting rooms. Next he went to his workbench in the cellar and fixed another wire onto a water piper! This puzzled me and dad said it’s necessary to ‘earth’ the whole lot if any lightning hits the aerial : the electricity would go into the ground and not damage the house and the big, new, wooden-varnished box with knobs on.
With everyone seated in our larger lounge on 2nd June 1953, he drew the curtains to shut out daylight and turned a knob on that box in the far corner. Its shiny light-grey mirror then turned into a black-and-white picture of crowds in a street somewhere in far-away London.
We were about to watch the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, a princess 20 years older than this little chap in his first year at primary school. Little did I know it was the first such occasion to be televised live and watched by 27 million, over half the population. Good job they wouldn’t fit into our house!
It was an amazing and enjoyable occasion to which was added a neighbourhood party. Nationally, it marked a welcome turning point after over a decade of death, destruction, privation and real economic austerity. I didn’t succumb to becoming a monarchist but I’ve come to admire her majesty as a stalwart Christian whose faith makes a special mark as an evangelist.
Believers and non-believers alike, have much to learn from the Queen’s example of duty to God and nation. This low-cost book about the reality and practicalities of her walk with Jesus is well-worth your careful study. (For details and to buy visit CPO website.)
In view of my above remarks I note the chapter on the Coronation, in particular on ‘The Secret Ceremony’. This moment of the ceremony was too sacred to be televised because it was when the Archbishop of Canterbury anointed her as Queen. It reads in part.:
‘In that commitment, she follows the example of Christ who was also anointed, as the word ‘Christ’ means, and set apart not to be served but to serve and, in his case, sacrifice his life so we can have life which lasts forever. Royal biographer William Shawcross wrote:
‘When Queen Elizabeth was crowned in 1953 she found, like her mother before her, an almost sacrificial quality at the heart of the service…It was the moment when the holy oil was applied to her, rather than her crowning with St Edward’s crown of solid gold, that was of supreme importance for the Queen. Indeed it was the most solemn and important moment of her entire life.’
May the Lord continue to bless her and move mightily in this nation and commonwealth. May Your Spirit move mightily, that this anniversary year becomes a turning point in our history where we repent and once again become a Christian and consecrated people in Holy Revival…
‘Archbishop Cranmer’ blogs in The Queen’s 90th: Happy Birthday Ma’am.:
‘God has saved her and she has lived long. The first two invocations of the National Anthem have been and are still being fulfilled. Her Majesty The Queen’s 90th Birthday is a cause of national celebration and personal joy. It is also a time for reflection and gratitude. Never in the history of British Monarchy has one reigned so old or so long. Nor, perhaps, has one seen so much social change and sweeping transition, at least in the absence of war and glorious revolution. And rarely has one been so devoted to Christ in the service of peace and reconciliation...’