Saturday, October 9, 2010

Royal News Roundup

On Thursday the newly appointed representative of HM the Queen of Canada welcomed His Highness the Aga Khan, 49th Hereditary Imam of the Shia Ismaili Muslims to Rideau Hall in Ottawa who came to Canada for the inaugural board meeting of the Global Centre for Pluralism. Meanwhile, Prince William made news by saving a life on his very first mission as a search and rescue pilot, transporting a man from a gas platform in the Irish Sea who was having heart problems to the hospital. On Sunday HRH the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall were in India to open the Commonwealth Games on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen. The event took place amidst heightened security due to rumored threats and after a great deal of hectic work over concerns that all the venues and accommodations would not be completed in time.

HH Pope Benedict XVI was in one of my favorite parts of Italy this week, visiting the city of Palermo on Sunday where he denounced organized crime and called upon the estimated 300,000 assembled Sicilians to show courage in opposition to the “road of death” represented by the mafia but instead to find solace in the “big family” of the Church. The Pontiff called on the youth of Sicily to be unafraid of evil of become saints, pointing to the 18-year-old Chiara Badano, an Italian girl who was recently beatified in Rome as an example. Such saints, said the Pope, may not always make the news, “but they are the force and the future of Sicily!” In other news on a slightly monarchist front a film is set to be released next year that is to be an historical epic of the Cristero rebellion in Mexico, a war in which Catholics rose up against a radical-leftist, Masonic and anti-clerical government. Eva Longoria and Peter O’Toole will be featured in the film as is Andy Garcia who will play the Cristero general who once said he thought he was the reincarnation of monarchist general Miguel Miramon who was executed alongside Emperor Maximilian on the Hill of Bells. The battle cry of the Cristeros was “Long live Christ the King”.

HM Queen Sirikit of Thailand was released from hospital in Bangkok on Monday after a four-day stay for treatment of a rapid heart rate. The Palace said the treatment was successful but, as is customary, did not go into details about the health of the Queen. In a reversal of their usual roles HM King Bhumibol visited his wife in the hospital. The revered King has been hospitalized himself for a year now, at the moment going through physical therapy according to some sources. The Queen, once released herself, was immediately back at the side of her beloved husband. Also a rarity in the Far East these days, on Friday HIH Crown Princess Masako of Japan attended her first public function since January at a cultural event in Tokyo alongside her husband HIH Crown Prince Naruhito. We certainly wish her all the best but after so many years have passed now I think it is safe to say the Crown Princess has shown a clear difficulty in, shall we say, adjusting to royal life. In India HM King Jigme Khesar Wangchuk of Bhutan was at the University of Calcutta to accept an honorary degree and to encourage students to strive to serve humanity rather than embrace materialism.

On Tuesday HM King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden and the Royal Family were out amidst the pomp and ceremony of the official opening of the Riksdag, the Swedish Parliament. The King, Queen, Crown Princess and her Prince consort were all on hand for the event. The King thanked those assembled for their support of the wedding of his daughter this summer. Across the border in Norway HM King Harald V also officially opened parliament on Saturday and gave his usual speech on the agenda of the government in the upcoming term. To the south, on Tuesday, HM Queen Margrethe II of Denmark opened the parliament in that kingdom. Crown Prince Frederick and Crown Princess Mary attended and were loudly cheered with a great deal of media attention going to the Crown Princess and her present condition.

It has been a busy week for the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Grand Duchess Maria Teresa has been in Barcelona, Spain as chairwoman of the International Meeting for Peace accompanied by her son Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume. Recent meetings have dealt with relations between religious groups and believers and non-believers. The big news however was the celebrations on Friday marking the tenth anniversary of the abdication of Grand Duke Jean and the accession of Grand Duke Henri as sovereign of Luxembourg. In an interview looking back at his decade on the throne the Grand Duke said that the family was central to Luxembourg and that his greatest priority was integrating foreigners into the country considering that the population has changed dramatically in recent years with 50% now being non-native Luxembourgers. The Grand Duke said they must not face this issue with selfishness. The Mad Monarchist extends heartfelt congratulations to the Grand Duke and the people of Luxembourg on this occasion and wishes His Royal Highness many more years on the throne.

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