Sixty Joyless De-Britished Uncrowned Commonpoor Years (1949-2009)

Elizabeth II Vice-Regal Saint: Remembering Paul Comtois (1895–1966), Lt.-Governor of Québec
Britannic Inheritance: Britain's proud legacy. What legacy will America leave?
English Debate: Daniel Hannan revels in making mince meat of Gordon Brown
Crazy Canucks: British MP banned from Canada on national security grounds
Happy St. Patrick's: Will Ireland ever return to the Commonwealth?
Voyage Through the Commonwealth: World cruise around the faded bits of pink.
No Queen for the Green: The Green Party of Canada votes to dispense with monarchy.
"Sir Edward Kennedy": The Queen has awarded the senator an honorary Knighthood.
President Obama: Hates Britain, but is keen to meet the Queen?
The Princess Royal: Princess Anne "outstanding" in Australia.
H.M.S. Victory: In 1744, 1000 sailors went down with a cargo of gold.
Queen's Commonwealth: Britain is letting the Commonwealth die.
Justice Kirby: His support for monarchy almost lost him appointment to High Court
Royal Military Academy: Sandhurst abolishes the Apostles' Creed.
Air Marshal Alec Maisner, R.I.P. Half Polish, half German and 100% British.
Cherie Blair: Not a vain, self regarding, shallow thinking viper after all.
Harry Potter: Celebrated rich kid thinks the Royals should not be celebrated
The Royal Jelly: A new king has been coronated, and his subjects are in a merry mood
Victoria Cross: Australian TROOPER MARK DONALDSON awarded the VC
Godless Buses: Royal Navy veteran, Ron Heather, refuses to drive his bus
Labour's Class War: To expunge those with the slightest pretensions to gentility
100 Top English Novels of All Time: The Essential Fictional Library
BIG BEN: Celebrating 150 Years of the Clock Tower

Monday, 25 December 2006

The Queen's Royal Christmas Podcast

Full text of Her Majesty's Christmas message to the Commonwealth

"I have lived long enough to know that things never remain quite the same for very long.

One of the things that has not changed all that much for me is the celebration of Christmas.

It remains a time when I try to put aside the anxieties of the moment and remember that Christ was born to bring peace and tolerance to a troubled world.

The birth of Jesus naturally turns our thoughts to all new-born children and what the future holds for them.

The birth of a baby brings great happiness - but then the business of growing up begins.

It is a process that starts within the protection and care of parents and other members of the family - including the older generation.

Dedicated teachers, friends and voluntary workers like these here at Southwark Cathedral have much to contribute.

As with any team, there is strength in combination: what grandparent has not wished for the best possible upbringing for their grandchildren or felt an enormous sense of pride at their achievements?

But, despite the many community projects like this one, the pressures of modern life sometimes seem to be weakening the links which have traditionally kept us together as families and communities.

As children grow up and develop their own sense of confidence and independence in the ever-changing technological environment, there is always the danger of a real divide opening up between young and old, based on unfamiliarity, ignorance or misunderstanding.

It is worth bearing in mind that all of our faith communities encourage the bridging of that divide.

The wisdom and experience of the great religions point to the need to nurture and guide the young, and to encourage respect for the elderly.

Christ himself told his disciples to let the children come to him, and Saint Paul reminded parents to be gentle with their children, and children to appreciate their parents.

The scriptures and traditions of the other faiths enshrine the same fundamental guidance.

It is very easy to concentrate on the differences between the religious faiths and to forget what they have in common - people of different faiths are bound together by the need to help the younger generation to become considerate and active citizens.

And there is another cause for hope that we can do better in the future at bridging the generation gap. As older people remain more active for longer, the opportunities to look for new ways to bring young and old together are multiplying.

As I look back on these past 12 months, marked in particular for me by the very generous response to my 80th birthday, I especially value the opportunities I have had to meet young people. I am impressed by their energy and vitality, and by their ambition to learn and to travel.

It makes me wonder what contribution older people can make to help them realise their ambitions.

I am reminded of a lady of about my age who was asked by an earnest, little granddaughter the other day: "Granny, can you remember the Stone Age?"

Whilst that may be going a bit far, the older generation are able to give a sense of context, as well as the wisdom of experience which can be invaluable.

Such advice and comfort are probably needed more often than younger people admit or older people recognise.

I hope that this is something that all of us, young or old, can reflect on at this special time of year.

For Christians, Christmas marks the birth of our Saviour, but it is also a wonderful occasion to bring the generations together in a shared festival of peace, tolerance and goodwill.

I wish you all a very happy Christmas together."


Anonymous said...

Pod Save the Queen!

Younghusband said...

Her 80th birthday speech was the first 'podcast' I ever downloaded. And so far only... still trying to download the Christmas speech...

Younghusband said...

On Sunday, the Queen sent a separate Christmas message to British troops overseas saying "Our country asks a lot of you and your families." I would have preferred it if she had used this occasion to have addressed ALL troops who serve under her rather than again singling out only the British. Why ignore the Aussies in Iraq or Canadians in Afghanistan or Fijians etc.?

The Monarchist said...

Because of the dual Commander-in-Chief role shared by the Queen and the Governors General. I think Buckingham Palace has basically been told by way of past precedent by Commonwealth Realm governments that the GG and not the Queen will speak to overseas troops, unless specifically invited to do so.

The Monarchist said...

In other words, it's not the Queen's fault.

Larry said...

A very good speech by Canada's Queen this Christmas. A blessed 2006-Christmas!.