This weekend the nation will gather to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. While the world has changed out of all recognition, she has remained steadfast and consistent. A devoted servant from the start she has sacrificed her life for the benefit of others. As Prince Charles expressed it on the anniversary of her succession on 6th February, ‘The Queen’s devotion to the welfare of all her people inspires still greater admiration with each passing year’.
But it was not a foregone conclusion that she would be such a monarch. Plenty before have been despots and tyrants. Perhaps two things more than any other have shaped her life and reign and set an example for us all to follow. Firstly, at her coronation she was given a copy of the Bible with these words, ‘to keep your Majesty ever mindful of the law and the Gospel of God as the Rule for the whole life and government of Christian Princes’. Secondly, and in her own words, ‘the teachings of Christ provide a framework in which I try to lead my life… the heart of [my] faith are the concepts of service and sacrifice as shown in the life and teachings of the one who made himself nothing taking the very nature of a servant.’