Some friends express their republican convictions on Facebook.
I'm glad they are able to freely.
Perhaps the irony is not lost that Britain has had that kind of freedom longer than perhaps any country in the world. Certainly French dissidents fled to England in the past. That freedom was assured by our tradition of a monarchy that was not absolute, a king who was not above the law and who was answerable to his parliament.
One reason I'm thankful for the Queen is that for me she expresses something that is at the heart of the essence of what it means to be a Christian. She was born into a role, destined for a life-long responsibility that she never chose, and she has embraced that role, shouldered that responsibility with diligence and perseverance. She has not always got everything right, but she has got that one most important thing right, to bow to God's providence, to accept his plan and purpose, to accept who you are, and to run with perseverance the race marked out for you.
Bravo! How many countries are there where people can be freely thankful for a leader who has been in office for over 60 years?