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Who we are

He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6.8


Watching the Coronation Concert last night, I was enveloped in a warm glow of reassurance about the British and Commonwealth community of nations. For all the hardship and despair brought on by Covid and the cost of living crisis and despite the stultifying effect of social media and the vain celebrity culture that it has spawned, one was aware of deeper values shining through. There was much talk of unity in diversity, love and respect... and, in his brief yet heart-felt and polished tribute to his father, Prince William mentioned that word again: service!


Another thing struck me - and that was the influence of the monarchy and the authority of the man at the helm, King Charles. This was a skilfully executed demonstration of soft power. Parliament might make the laws and take the decisions which affect our everyday lives but here was a revelation of who sets the tone for the greater context in which we operate. And the insights into the King's lesser known achievements, interests and abilities, which were introduced by a galaxy of well-known characters and peppered throughout the evening, left us in no doubt that here was a leader who has earned his spurs.


If I was a republican I would be waking up in the uneasy realisation that my aspirations for constitutional change had been dealt a blow by the weekend's proceedings. At the same time monarchists should not be complacent. King Charles's authority is hard won. It is built on the legendary status of his mother, his own lifetime of devotion to good causes and service to the nation and commonwealth and, crucially, to the accountability he acknowledges - and expressed so evidently in his coronation - to a much higher authority: the King of kings and Lord of lords, Jesus Christ.

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