Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Saturday June 11, 2016
Britain expresses ‘profound gratitude’ for Queen Elizabeth as 90th birthday celebrations kick off
Britain celebrated Queen Elizabeth II’s 90th birthday and her service to the country Friday with solemn pomp, pageantry and prayer at St. Paul’s Cathedral ahead of a weekend of festivities.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, set the tone by reminding Britain of the queen’s long life and dedicated service. In essence, he said the nation was lucky because Elizabeth only became queen by chance.
“We look back on Your Majesty’s 90 years in the life of our nation with deep wonder and profound gratitude,” he said. “Through war and hardship, through turmoil and change, we have been fearfully and wonderfully sustained.”
Gov. Gen. David Johnston is among thousands of people gathered in London for the celebrations.
He and 14 other governors general had lunch with the Queen following the service St. Paul’s Cathedral.
He says one of the topics discussed was the usefulness of having apolitical heads of state.
Johnston says the strength of a constitutional monarchy lies in the stability and serenity it brings, allowing countries to avoid extremes.
The celebration has been a lengthy affair, starting with her real birthday in April. The monarch’s official birthday is traditionally celebrated in June when Britain’s weather can be more favourable. (Source: Toronto Star)