Happy Victoria Day!

Today is probably my favourite secular holiday.  On the third Monday in May Canadians celebrate the reign of Queen Victoria, the granddaughter of King George III.

Victoria was the daughter of Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of King George III. Both the Duke of Kent and King George III died in 1820, and Victoria was raised under close supervision by her German-born mother Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld. She inherited the throne at the age of 18, after her father’s three elder brothers had all died, leaving no surviving legitimate children. The United Kingdom was already an established constitutional monarchy, in which the sovereign held relatively little direct political power. Privately, Victoria attempted to influence government policy and ministerial appointments; publicly, she became a national icon who was identified with strict standards of personal morality.

Putting aside the fact that England renounced the True Faith when King Henry VIII insisted on receiving a divorce from his wife, and when his faithful barrister Thomas More refused he persecuted him terribly, I quite like the Monarchy.  It would be all the better if the next Monarch reverted to the True Faith, and left the Church of England [Anglican Church or Episcopal Church] to die on the vine.

The Catholic Church has long taught that Monarchy is the best form of government, followed by Aristocracy, and then Democracy.  St. Thomas Aquinas taught that a blend of all three is likely best.  I think here in Canada, along with Great Britain and the other Commonwealth states have the closest to that commingling.  We have the Monarch who’s able to assert herself (through dissolving Parliament or allowing a new government to be formed from an existing elected Parliament) if need be in a time of crisis.  We have the Aristocracy in the Senate, the upper Chamber which is meant to be a House of “Sober Second Thought”, and we have the democracy in our elections where we choose for ourselves the men or women who represent us in Parliament, which is supposed to be a safeguard of our liberty, not a threat to it as it tends to be today.

Its unfortunate that the two dominant national political parties (Liberal and Tory) are both effectively Republican at this point, and only pay lip service to the Monarchy as a relic of the past that isn’t relevent to the present or the future.   I would warn that given the climate we live in today, the Monarchy might become more relevant and necessary in our politics than we realize.

But amidst the apparent chaos and unruliness that seems so pervasive in our culture, lets remember who the real King is.  He doesn’t seem well known anymore, and his adherents have not done well proclaiming him and making converts of their neighbours.  His name is Jesus Christ, he is the Son of God, the second person of the Blessed Trinity.  He who created the world ultimately governs it.   His governing style is benevolent, his justice is merciful, and he truly serves those who toil in the garden in his name.

God Save the Queen, and make her a convert to the Catholic Church.  Our Lady of Walsingham, Ora Pro Nobis.

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We need clear blue water.

Sorry, its not a post about our water quality which deserves a post for itself.  This is about the Conservative Party of Canada leadership race.  I want to share an interview that was done by Mark Steyn with Maxime Bernier.

Affectionately known as “Mad Max” by some of his supporters, he’s running a principled campaign based on mostly fiscal ideas that some people would label “Republican”, “laissez faire”, “trickle down economics”, or something like that.  In his own words, his campaign is about freedom, personal responsibility, fairness, and respect.

If you want the government out of your life, and you want to pay less tax, and be more responsible for your welfare, then Max Bernier is your guy.  He won’t rank at the top of my ballot for reasons to do with life and marriage (stop marching in Pride parades Max!!), but he’ll be close!!

As I said in the title, and as Mark Steyn said at the end of the interview, keep putting clear blue water between the Conservative Party and the Liberal Party of Canada.  We’re never going to accomplish anything by trying to out-liberal the Liberal Party.

A Right to Arms.

This is wonderful documentary about our Canadian history and our historic right to bear arms and defend ourselves against intruders or even a hostile, tyrannical government.  Its quite amusing that our rebellions against our English rulers in the 19th century aren’t talked about much in our public education.  You wouldn’t want the truth to get out about such dangerous topics as liberty and self-defense.

Who’s Alfred?

Some of you might be wondering, who’s Alfred?  Alfred is Alfred the Great, King of Wessex from r.871-899.  Alfred is one of only two Kings to receive the epithet of “Great”, along with Cnut, the Scandinavian .   He successfully defeated the Vikings at Edington to preserve his Kingdom, the only Kingdom in England that the Vikings hadn’t taken up to that point.  After the Vikings were defeated at Edington, one of the terms of the cease-fire was that Guthrum – the Viking King – had to convert to Christianity.  So weeks later after the victory, Guthrum and twenty-nine of his men were baptised into the Faith.

Alfred was baptised in Rome by Pope Leo IV.  He was more known for his intellect than having a warrior character.  He wasn’t particularly strong physically, and was thought to have suffered from Crohn’s disease from a young age.  Alfred had a reputation as a gracious and learned man who encouraged education, reformed his military and legal system, and improved the quality of life for his people.

King Alfred the Great is probably most famous for a legend that’s often told about how when he was on the run from the Vikings, he took refuge in the home of a peasant woman (who likely didn’t know who he was), and was asked to watch the cakes that she was baking by the fire.  Consumed by his own troubles and thoughts, he mistakenly allowed them to burn, which brought scorn down on him from the woman.