75th Anniversary of VJ Day – UK

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Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, on the 75th anniversary of VJ Day (“Victory over Japan Day,” marking the conclusion of hostilities in World War Two), celebrated in the UK – and many other parts of the world – today. The National WW II Museum in New Orleans notes,

“Finally recognizing that victory was impossible, the Japanese government accepted Allied surrender terms without qualifications on August 14, 1945. That same day, President Harry S. Truman announced from the White House that the Japanese acceptance met the terms laid down at the Potsdam Conference for unconditional surrender. As soon as the news of Japan’s surrender was announced on August 14, celebrations erupted across the United States. The United Kingdom announced that its official V-J Day would be the next day, August 15, 1945, and Americans exuberantly joined in that day’s merriment, too.”

So while the official commemoration in the U.S. is celebrated in the United States on the day formal surrender documents were signed aboard the USS Missouri (BB-63) in Tokyo Bay – September 2, 1945 – there is nothing wrong with marking the occasion today! Or yesterday, for that matter…

Mini Trooping the Colour 2020 will be held at Windsor for Queen’s official birthday | The Crown Chronicles

Source: Mini Trooping the Colour 2020 will be held at Windsor for Queen’s official birthday | The Crown Chronicles

“After the coronavirus pandemic put paid to this year’s Trooping the Colour, it has been confirmed a private and scaled-back version of the celebration will be held at Windsor [this] weekend.

“Trooping the Colour marks The Queen’s official birthday on the second Saturday of June, and is a parade of thousands of soldiers and hundreds of horses, marching and music. It is one of the highlights in Her Majesty’s calendar, so the mini version of the ceremony is sure to bring a smile to The Queen’s face!

‘There will be a small, brief military ceremony at Windsor Castle to mark The Queen’s official birthday,’ a palace spokesperson has said.

“The Queen cancelled the event at the end of March due to safety fears, and of course, the lockdown.”

 

‘We’ll meet again’ – Queen recalls WWII song in bid to lift nation in lockdown | UK News | Sky News

Source: ‘We’ll meet again’ – Queen recalls WWII song in bid to lift nation in lockdown | UK News | Sky News

The Queen’s address to the nation, the Commonwealth, and the world!

Her Majesty has outdone herself, yet again. In only the 5th such address in the 68 years of her reign, Queen Elizabeth II speaks with her characteristic mix of absolute graciousness, steely determination, and lifelong devotion to her people and her duty. As Sky News reports,

“The Queen has drawn on her experience of wartime spirit to call on the country to ‘remain united and resolute’ to overcome the coronavirus crisis. In an historic address to the nation recorded inside Windsor Castle, the monarch said: ‘Together we are tackling this disease and I want to reassure you that if we remain united and resolute, then we will overcome it.’

“In a deeply moving and personal message, Her Majesty reflected on how difficult it is for many spending time apart during the coronavirus pandemic. ‘We should take comfort that while we may have more still to endure, better days will return: we will be with our friends again; we will be with our families again; we will meet again,’ she said…

“‘While we have faced challenges before, this one is different. This time we join with all nations across the globe in a common endeavour, using the great advances of science and our instinctive compassion to heal. We will succeed – and that success will belong to every one of us.'”

Her Majesty is, as always, an inspiration. God save The Queen!


UPDATE: Reports are that Britons have “flocked to Twitter” to express their support of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, following her extraordinary address.

Screenshot_2020-04-05 Queen praised by Britons as monarch issues moving coronavirus rallying call - REACTION

The Express noted that Her Majesty “provided a deeply personal address as the UK desperately fights the accelerating coronavirus outbreak,” as she asserted that “those who come after us will say that the Britons of this generation were as strong as any,” and “that the attributes of self-discipline, of quiet, good-humoured resolve and of fellow feeling still characterise this country.”

“The monarch acknowledged the ‘grief’ some have experienced, the ‘financial difficulties’ many face, and the ‘enormous changes’ the country is enduring during the current nationwide lockdown to tackle the spread of coronavirus. She added in the future everyone will be able to feel ‘pride’ in how they rose to the challenge.”

I say again: God save The Queen! God bless Her Majesty, and keep her in health and safety.

 

Her Majesty The Queen will address the UK and Commonwealth on Sunday

Screenshot_2020-04-03 (7) The Royal Family - Posts

“On Sunday 5th April at 8pm (BST)‬ [3:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time] ‪Her Majesty The Queen will address the UK and the Commonwealth in a televised broadcast.‬ As well as television and radio, The Queen’s address will be shown on The Royal Family’s social media channels.”

One presumes that this will be in regard to the ongoing coronavirus situation. It is sad that Her Majesty has had to deal with so many crises and controversies in recent years, and now this. She’s 93 years old, for goodness sake! But as the comment above aptly noted, she is an inspiration to us all. God save The Queen! Health and long life to Her Majesty.

 

Announcement regarding changes to The Queen’s diary | The Royal Family

The British Monarchy

As a sensible precaution and for practical reasons in the current circumstances, a number of changes are being made to The Queen’s diary.

Source: Announcement regarding changes to The Queen’s diary | The Royal Family

As the saying goes, “things are getting real.” Her Majesty’s schedule is being rearranged in a manner suitable to precautions regarding the global coronavirus pandemic. Praying for the preservation in good health of Her Majesty, Prince Philip, and the rest of the Royal Family, as well as all the people of Britain and the United Kingdom. Indeed, all the people of the world!

A Prayer “In the time of any common Plague or Sickness,” from The Book of Common Prayer 1662:

O ALMIGHTY God, who in thy wrath did send a plague upon thine own people in the wilderness, for their obstinate rebellion against Moses and Aaron; and also, in the time of king David, didst slay with the plague of Pestilence threescore and ten thousand, and yet remembering thy mercy didst save the rest; Have pity upon us miserable sinners, who now are visited with great sickness and mortality; that like as thou didst then accept of an atonement, and didst command the destroying Angel to cease from punishing, so it may now please thee to withdraw from us this plague and grievous sickness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The competing ethics of duty -v- self-interest misread by Harry and Meghan | Gavin Ashenden

Source: The competing ethics of duty -v- self-interest misread by Harry and Meghan | Gavin Ashenden

As reported by the BBC and posted on their Instagram page,

“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex” – the above-mentioned Harry and Meghan – “have announced they will step back as ‘senior’ royals and work to become financially independent.

“In a statement, Prince Harry and Meghan also said they plan to split their time between the UK and North America…

“In their unexpected statement on Wednesday, also posted on their Instagram page, the couple said they made the decision ‘after many months of reflection and internal discussions.'”

Here’s an excerpt of that Instagam post:

After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution. We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen.

“It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment. We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honour our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth, and our patronages.

To which Gavin Ashenden, the former Queen’s Chaplain who became a Continuing Anglican Bishop, and more recently “swam the Tiber” to Rome, responds (accurately, in my opinion):

“The announcement from Harry and Meghan will cause a variety of responses from the public. One of them will be sadness. There is a tragic element to the blinkeredness and immaturity that mistakes a bid for independence as ‘carving a progressive role.’

“It isn’t that at all of course. In reality it is choosing between two competing philosophies or ethics.

“One, which the monarchy is founded on and depends on, is a Christian one in which doing one’s duty on behalf of others takes priority over self-interest. The other is a concentration on self-interest and self expression (however it is justified) at the expense of self-sacrifice and duty.”

Indeed. There could hardly be more difference between their proclamation and that of Harry’s grandmother, Her Majesty The Queen, then Princess Elizabeth, in 1947, when she promised her people,

I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service and the service of our great imperial family to which we all belong.”

That is the very definition of self-sacrifice and duty, and Her Majesty has lived it, as she promised, all her life long. Her devotion to her people, her realms, and the Commonwealth is unquestionable, as is her sense of duty. A shame it has not run true, through the generations.

Thankfully, HRH Prince William and Katherine, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (Prince William being second in line to the Throne following his father, HRH Charles Prince of Wales), seem rather more solid than the Sussexes. I hope and pray that proves to be the case!


N.B. – Also from the BBC article:

“Former Buckingham Palace press officer Dickie Arbiter suggested the decision showed Prince Harry’s ‘heart ruling his head.'”

I would say that is a pretty good condensation of the saga of Harry and Meghan, in general.

By royal disappointment: Meghan and Harry’s behaviour is undermining the monarchy | The Spectator

What must the Queen think of the younger royals’ actions?

Source: By royal disappointment: Meghan and Harry’s behaviour is undermining the monarchy | The Spectator

“Yet there is a feeling that, while the Queen deserves our respect, certain other members of her family should try harder. Much harder. There is a turbulence in the air, a contagion of bad behaviour that taints the good deeds and hard work of other royals, causing understandable resentment. These miscreants could do worse than follow the example of the Queen; this force of nature in pastel separates who has never put a foot wrong nor allowed selfish needs or creature comforts to impede her sense of duty.”

This excellent if sobering essay on the sense of duty and propriety of Her Majesty The Queen, as contrasted against the behavior of certain other members of the Royal Family, devotes – as its title would indicate – a fair amount of its space to pointing out the foibles of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, a.k.a. Prince Harry and the former Meghan Markle. As well it should. Continue reading “By royal disappointment: Meghan and Harry’s behaviour is undermining the monarchy | The Spectator”

Queen tells aides of her ‘disappointment in the current political class’ | Daily Mail Online

The Queen (pictured in Scotland last week) has voiced her frustration with today's politicians and their 'inability to govern correctly', it has been claimed

The Queen (pictured in Scotland last week) has voiced her frustration with today’s politicians and their ‘inability to govern correctly,’ it has been claimed.

Source: Queen tells aides of her ‘disappointment in the current political class’ | Daily Mail Online

“The Queen has voiced her frustration with today’s politicians and their ‘inability to govern correctly’, it has been claimed. The 93-year-old monarch remains scrupulously neutral in public but is said to have told aides of her ‘disappointment in the current political class’. She made the comments in 2016 but her feelings have only intensified since then amid endless political turmoil over Brexit, sources told The Sunday Times. ‘[Her Majesty] expressed her exasperation and frustration about the quality of our political leadership, and that frustration will only have grown,’ one said. Royal aides were said to be surprised by her tone, describing the Queen as ‘really dismayed’ by the state of UK politics.”

Her Majesty is in Scotland for Royal Week

From The British Royalist Society (links added):

Her Majesty The Queen attended the Ceremony of the Keys at Holyroodhouse today.

She is symbolically offered the keys to the city by the Lord Provost and tradition dictates that the Queen then returns them, entrusting their safekeeping to Edinburgh’s elected officials.

The Queen will be residing in Scotland for Royal Week, which kicks off with a garden party at Holyroodhouse Palace.

66th Anniversary of the Coronation of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II

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👑 On this day in 1953, Her Majesty The Queen’s coronation was held at Westminster Abbey.

Source: The British Royalist Society, which writes:

“The Queen was the 39th sovereign to be crowned in the Abbey and the sixth Queen to be crowned there in her own right. The service used for the Queen’s coronation descends directly from King Edgar’s in 973.

“The Sovereign’s procession was made up of 250 people including Church leaders, Commonwealth Prime Ministers, members of the Royal Household, civil and military leaders and the Yeoman of the Guard.

“Her Majesty’s accession to the throne also set history in and of itself. Queen Mary (the Queen’s grandmother) was the first grandmother to see two Sovereigns ascend and Prince Charles was the first child to witness his mother’s coronation as Sovereign. Princess Anne did not attend the ceremony as she was considered to be too young. On a side note, Princess Marie Louise (Queen Victoria’s granddaughter) witnessed four coronations, including that of Elizabeth II.

“129 nations and territories were represented at the coronation with a whopping 8,200 guests were in attendance.

“Read more about the coronation and its importance here.”

[The Anglophilic Anglican notes that the above-linked short essay on the Coronation is quite fascinating and helpful in understanding the significance of this ceremony.]

None of them look terribly happy about it, in this picture – but considering that Her Majesty had come to the crown unexpectedly due to the premature death of her father, King George VI, that is perhaps to be expected.

Nota Bene: I am not certain of the identity of the prelate to the right of Her Majesty; but she was crowned by the Most Reverend and Right Honorable Geoffrey Francis Fisher, then Archbishop of Canterbury. Aside from the Coronation of Her Majesty, he is perhaps most famous for his assertion that

“We [meaning the Church of England, and by extension Anglicans in general] have no doctrine of our own — we only possess the Catholic doctrine of the Catholic Church enshrined in the Catholic creeds, and those creeds we hold without addition or diminution. We stand firm on that rock.”

The one to the far left, I am quite confident, is then-Bishop of Durham Arthur Michael Ramsey, who became the 100th Archbishop of Canterbury (1961 – 1974), following Fischer: one of the greatest – arguably, the greatest of the 20th century – occupants of that Primatial See. He was known as a gifted theologian, educator, and advocate of Christian unity, and the writer of many books, perhaps most notably his first: The Gospel and the Catholic Church.

Ironically and somewhat amusingly, Fisher – who had been Ramsey’s headmaster at Repton, and known him basically all his life – is said to have counseled Prime Minister Harold Macmillan against selecting Ramsey for approval by Her Majesty as Archbishop of Canterbury, commenting that

“Doctor Ramsey is a theologian, a scholar and a man of prayer. Therefore, he is entirely unsuitable as Archbishop of Canterbury.”

Macmillan reportedly responded,

“Thank you, your Grace, for your kind advice. You may have been Doctor Ramsey’s headmaster, but you were not mine.”

Ramsey was duly selected.