It’s been months since the world mourned Queen Elizabeth’s passing. The next royal event on the calendar will happen this week when the planet will pause to watch the anointing of her son as King Charles 3.0.
Important people from around the world will be there, and politicians too. Unfortunately some celebrities will be absent, including such notables as: Elton John, Adele, the Spice Girls, and Winston Churchill. Meghan Markle and Will Smith weren’t invited.
The British are a complicated bunch so I’m guessing you are still confused about some of the royal details since the Queen’s death. That’s where I come in. I am qualified to answer your questions about English royalty because my sister took one of those Ancestry DNA tests that confirmed she is really, really Englishy. That makes me really Englishy too because I don’t want to pay for my own test.
Which leads to the Q&A session I had recently that included both questions and answers. It was with an imaginary person I had met and I have copied our conversation, verbatim and word for word, as memory serves.
But enough about my qualifications. Let’s talk royalty!
Q. Hey Brian, were you a Queen watcher?
A. To be honest, I didn’t know they were touring.
Q. No, the Queen.
A. Yes, there will never be another band like them.
Q. No, I mean did you like Queen Elizabeth II?
A. Of course! Anybody who loved dogs, Bentleys, and precision wardrobes was alright in my books. Mostly I admired her independent spirit – she avoided trendy hairstyles for decades.
Q. Is it true she died at home?
A: Yes, not really. But kind of. Though not so much. Let me explain…
Most people think Buckingham Palace was the Queen’s home but she didn’t have a home … she had many homes, plural. The royal word for ‘home’ is better translated as ‘castle’ and Elizabeth had many of them. All of the Queen’s homes were big, old, immaculate castles on big, old, immaculate estates maintained by big, old, immaculate staff.
Buckingham Palace was the Queen’s main home castle in the sense that it was her headquarters castle but she spent a lot of time at her country home castle of Windsor Castle. Not to be confused with her holiday home castle at Sandringham Estate. Which was a castle.
Her Irish home castle was Hillsborough Castle. Her Scottish home castle was a castle located in Holyrood but her favourite castle was the Scottish summer home at Balmoral. This was the castle where she passed away. Castle.
The good news is that Charles should be able to find a cozy home castle where he can hang his crown.
Q. So the Queen of England actually died in Scotland?
A. Yes, although Scotland and England are both the same, except they’re not. Mind you, the Scots are going to vote on their independence so there’s a good chance they’ll choose to change and become Scottish like they are now. Scotland is different from both of the Irelands, which are also different but the same. Wales is another place.
Q. That’s complicated.
A. Being complicated is a British thing, although it’s complicated. I mean, these people drive on the wrong side of the road, speak dialects the rest of us can’t understand, and think mushy peas are a vegetable when we all know they’re a starch.
The countries in the British Commonwealth don’t actually have much in common, however they are united by two things: the monarchy and pubs. Although they could live without the monarchy if they had to.
Q. Why do they have royalty?
A. They have royalty because God is invisible and people need to trust something they can see.
Q. What are some of the important tasks of royalty?
A. A big task for a king or queen is to reign. Reigning involves a wide variety of ceremonial activities like signing their name, walking slowly and appearing interested.
But the primary purpose of royalty is to continue being royalty. They exist as an important reminder that anyone can be rich and famous without either skills or personality.
Q. I noticed that the reigning monarch has a Royal Sceptre. What is its purpose?
A. The holder of the Sceptre has governmental responsibilities that other people are responsible to carry out. The monarch also has a golden Orb which means they have religious responsibilities that other people are responsible to carry out. Objects like sceptres and orbs are highly valued in fantasies and fairy tales.
Q. Was the Queen a christian?
A. She was the head of the Church of England.
Q. Was she a christian?
A. She was known as a Defender of the Faith.
Q. Was she a christian?
A. She was an Anglican.
Q. But was she a christian?
A. Facebook said she was.
Q. Praise God.
Q. Will Charles be a good king?
A. I hope so, but it’s hard to tell what is more important – the monarch, the institution, or the people who pay their way. He needs our prayers because bloodlines are no guarantee of integrity.
Q. I have heard that the deceased evangelist Billy Graham and his family are considered evangelical royalty.
A. That’s true but there are plenty of other christian leaders who have their own empires.
Q. Are you more qualified to talk about evangelical royalty than you are about British royalty?
A. Equally qualified, I’d say, because they are also part of my heritage. I was an evangelical before worship teams and coffee in the vestibule; back when songs had four verses and Bibles were written by Shakespeare.
Q. Did you like Billy Graham?
A. Yeah, I liked Billy. I had to admire someone who made a living travelling around the world preaching at people he didn’t know. Like Greta Thunberg does today.
Billy Graham was the first in his royal line. He had strong beliefs but evolved in his faith; made mistakes but tried to correct them; was conservative but with progressive passages. Ultimately he was flawed but sincere. Like Greta Thunberg.
Q. Didn’t Billy’s son Franklin assume royal duties as chair of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA)?
A. Franklin inherited the kingdom after his father and Franklin’s son Will appears to be next in succession. Passing the throne to the first-born child is a custom observed by monarchies and Baptists.
Q. Doesn’t he also lead a well known charity?
A. Yes, BGEA pays him well but Samaritan’s Purse is the organization where he earns his primary full-time salary. He also spends a lot of energy advocating for a more fundamentalist christian kingdom.
Q. Why do we have fundamentalist royalty?
A. We have fundamentalist royalty because God is invisible and people need to trust in someone they can see and who will tell them what to think. These days, many evangelicals either identify as fundamentalists or are transitioning.
Q. How many fundamentalist kingdoms are there and what are they like?
A. There are many separate kingdoms. When Jesus invented christianity¹, none of his disciples thought to patent the idea so there have been cheap imitations ever since.
Fundamentalists are a stricter version of evangelicals but with a lower re-birth rate. Their goal is to take us back to a time when science and history didn’t clutter people’s thinking with new ideas.
They believe society was better in the good old days: back when men had jobs and wives had cookbooks; back when christian music didn’t have an offbeat; back when people could have names like Dick or Virginia without being teased.
Q. What do royal fundamentalists do?
A. Fundamentalist royalty preach on television, appear with celebrities, tell us how to vote, and keep ghostwriters employed.
You can recognize them by their need to Be Against Stuff. Being Against Stuff is the business model favoured by fundamentalists and freedom convoys to stir up their base and raise money. They do this by Being Against Suff like sex, socialism, evolution, and sexy socialists who have evolved.
But the primary purpose of royalty is to continue being royalty. They exist as an important reminder that anyone can be rich and famous regardless of their personality – as long as they are rich and famous enough to stay rich and famous.
Q. Can you give an example?
A. Most royal fundamentalists apply their own meanings to expressions like: woke progressives, liberal left, LGBT activists, godless socialists, dangerous CRT, etc. They use these tropes to make fearful proclamations about groups they already don’t like.
For example, a year ago Franklin Graham wrote a condemnation of “progressive christianity” in Decision magazine where he criticized christians who are on the left of his rightness. A few months later he repeated himself by offering a free resource called, “Progressive Christianity Can Lead You to Hell.”
Naturally I asked for the “Progressive Christianity Can Lead You to Hell” free resource because: 1) it was free; 2) I was curious; 3) I’m always looking for ways to not go to hell.²
Q. Hell is a formidable warning.
A. Yes, and formidable is a big word.
Q. What did you learn from it?
Q. What is a progressive christian?
A. I don’t have a dictionary handy but I’m pretty sure a ‘progressive’ is someone who moves forward and a ‘christian’ is somebody who follows Jesus. I have no idea why he’s afraid of Jesus followers who move forward.
Q. Are you a progressive?
A. Probably. Everybody is somebody else’s progressive. Even conservatives are progressive – they just change so slowly nobody notices.
Q. But isn’t it healthy for fundamentalist royals to have a lot of influence?
A. Yes, they think so. Fundamentalists are able to improve on Jesus’ teachings by condemning things he didn’t talk about, using strategies he never used.
Q. What if fundamentalists didn’t tell people what to believe, but accepted them no matter what they believed?
A. Fundamentalist royalty would be out of work and the Religious Industrial Complex would collapse. There would be no more cheezy christian tee shirts or bumper stickers, no more bad christian books and movies, christian music would stop sounding the same, and the value of private jets would crash.
Christianity would die if it couldn’t raise money to pay professionals to preach about the free gift of salvation. Worst of all, we’d have to tell people about Jesus ourselves, from our hearts, and I don’t think anybody wants that.
Q. Are fundamentalists christian?
A. They go to church.
Q. Are they christian?
A. They are evangelical.
Q. Are they christian?
A. They believe the Bible.
Q. But are they christian?
A. Facebook says they are.
Q. Praise God.
Q. Going forward, will royal fundamentalists be faithful leaders?
A. I hope so. But it’s hard to tell what is more important – the monarch, the institution, or the people who pay their way. They need our prayers because bloodlines are no guarantee of integrity.
~ ~ ~
¹ Yes nerds, I know he didn’t invent a religion – work with me.
² It wasn’t helpful. I didn’t see anything hell-worthy to avoid. It seems to be intended for people who don’t know what progressive means. At least BGEA likes me – they’ve been sending me emails ever since.