Sunday, July 5, 2009

Second World War Veteran Port Elizabeth

Private collection

To use this image quote: Our Christian Heritage/ 0194/2009

Mount Road Power Station Port Elizabeth History Archive Port Elizabeth
Original Source PE Library

Diaz First Day Cover Port Elizabeth

Tram Port Elizabeth History Archives Port Elizabeth
original source PE Library

HM Queen Victoria Port Elizabeth

To use this image quote: Our Christian Heritage/ 7906/2009

Theatre Whites Road Port Elizabeth

To use this image quote: Our Christian Heritage/ 4082/2009

Bank Note Port Elizabeth

HM Queen Victoria Port Elizabeth

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Movie 'The Young Victoria' Port Elizabeth


NOBLE PURSUIT: “Loving Albert (Rupert Friend) was Victoria’s (Emily Blunt) greatest achievement,’ said Blunt.

Victoria’s Real Secret

A new film about Queen Victoria’s abusive childhood and exceptional rise to power reveals the true monarch for the first time, writes Barry Ronge

Popular history has not been kind to Queen Victoria. The only royal utterance attributed to her is “We are not amused” and she is remembered mainly for being reclusive, obsessively traditional and rather dull.

Real history, however, reminds us that she reigned for 60 years, over the most powerful, rich and vast empire in the history of the England monarchy. She did so with a firm hand and with the love and support of her people.

This elegant, robust biography brushes away the caricatures and tells the story of her dramatic ascent of the throne when she was just 18 years old, and focuses on her idyllic love match to the dashing Prince Albert. It’s a timely and gorgeously told tale that offers a fresh account of Victoria’s dramatic ascent to the throne.

What gives this film the added twist of topicality is that it was the brainchild of Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York. She shares a producer’s credit on the film, along with the Oscar-winning movie-mogul, Martin Scorsese. It’s an interesting project and it’s not hard to imagine why Fergie became so interested in this story.

She, like the late Princess Diana, was catapulted into the web of protocol and royal ritual when they married the young princes, Andrew and Charles. The two girls constantly overstepped the limits of royal tradition, and both their marriages ended in divorce.

Fergie became fascinated by the complicated early life of Victoria, and the romantic tale of her passionate love for Prince Albert. She gained access to the royal archives and wrote two books on Victoria and Prince Albert. In doing so, she was given unlimited access to Victoria’s diaries at Windsor Castle and that’s where she got the idea for a film.

Fergie passed on all her research to screenwriter Julian Fellowes, who had won an Oscar for writing Gosford Park, and he was highly praised for his scripts for Separate Lies and Vanity Fair.

Fergie was very hands-on during the script phase, but she did not want this film to be construed as her oblique comment about her life in the House of Windsor. “We could

have minimized the history and made a film about a dysfunctional family who just happened to be dukes and duchesses, and kings and queens,” said Fellowes. “But I’m not a believer in modernizing the story too much.

“If you do, you lose the context in which these characters must act and respond. We cannot impose our current perceptions about personal freedom and individual responsibility on characters who lived in a culture totally different from our own. The audience has to understand how limited were the choices open to Victoria. If they don’t recognize that, they will judge all the characters by current attitudes and that would warp the story and its meaning.”

The smart move, said Fellowes, was to find a director who was not awestruck by the weight and density of royal history. “We chose French director Jean Marc Vallee,” said Fellowes, “because his point of view is not steeped in British history. He did not grow up with the ponderous stereotype of Queen Victoria that a British writer might have retained,” said Fellowes.

COURT IN THE ACT: Emily Blunt stars in The Young Victoria.

“Vallee brought a fresh approach and he shoots very emotionally. He had wonderful tactics that were not just pretty, they helped to create the feeling that all eyes were on Victoria, and that she was being watched, all the time, by everyone, and from every single angle. He also shot quickly so that events moved very fast and never felt stuffy or boring.”

The film’s great coup, of course, is the casting of Emily Blunt, one of the most interesting young actresses of this time. She admits that she knew almost nothing about Victyoria. “I had the same clich├ęd opinion; that she was old, in mourning, sour-faced and repressed,” she said, “and I was amazed by what I found as I started researching the role.”

The story is genuinely dramatic. Victoria was never considered to be a contender to the throne but a bizarre series of deaths and mishaps wiped out all the other direct heirs to the throne of the reigning King William IV. So when Victoria was still a child, her mother, the mercenary, ambitious Duchess of Kent, played in the film by Miranda Richardson, started pushing her daughter into court life.

The ambition of the Duchess of York was not selfless. She was the mistress of an unscrupulous noble-man, Sir John Conroy. They were plotting to ensure that when old King William died, the Duchess of Kent would be appointed Regent until Victoria “came of age”.

“It was a selfish power-grab and Victoria was necessary to their schemes”.

That would have made Sir John Conroy and the Duchess of Kent the virtual rulers of England. It was a nakedly ambitious and selfish power-grab and young Victoria was necessary to their schemes.

The crucial issue was that when Victoria turned 18, she was eligible to ascend the throne and could legitimately reign as Queen of England. Victoria turned 18 years old on May 27 1837. Just one month later, the reigning King William IV died and Victoria was woken at dawn to be told that she was Queen of England, an enormous responsibility for any 18 year old, and a rare thing for a woman in Britain.

Between the death of Queen Elizabeth I in 1603 and Victoria’s ascent to the throne, there had been only one other Queen of England, Queen Anne (1702 – 1714).

Anne’s reign was uneventful, largely because she fell pregnant 18 times during her marriage. She was keen on horses and perhaps the single feature of her royal legacy was that she founded the legendary Ascot race meeting.

England was ruled by just three queens in three centuries. That tradition meant that this 18-year-old girl was up against an arrogant, close-knit, male-dominated government. The powerful men, who managed England at the time, assumed that Victoria would be a pliable, pretty figurehead who would rubber stamp whatever they ordered her to do.

They did not reckon on the fact that Victoria was strong-willed and highly intelligent, and she desperately yearned to be free of her domineering mother.

As Fellowes observed: “If someone had said to me, `Do you know about Queen Victoria?’, I probably would have said, `Yes’, but I soon realized how little I actually knew about her early years. I didn’t realize at all that she had survived all this emotional battering in order to take control of her own life and I was immediately fascinated by that,” he said. “most people don’t know the drama of her succession to the throne, or that she was essentially the victim of an abusive childhood.”

Blunt’s response was similar.

“As I did my research,” she said, “I was amazed by her cruelly isolated childhood. She was never allowed any friends. Anyone who was going to meet her had to be interrogated before they were introduced. She led a secluded life and wasn’t even allowed her own bedroom. She had to sleep in the same room as her mother till she was 18,” said Blunt. “She was never allowed to walk down a staircase on her own. Her hand had to be held by her mother or some devoted servant, for fear that she would fall and die of her wounds.

“Victoria knew that this was not genuine concern for her welfare. It must have been awful, to never have any private space or time, to be always in the company of scheming adults. No wonder she was still playing with dolls when she was 15.

“But when she turned 18, and her mother no longer had any legal control of her life, Victoria made her stubborn burst for freedom. She was finally independent of everyone and wanted to test her strength. It must have been frightening to put a young girl who had lived largely in her imagination, or under the thumb of her grasping mother, in that position.

“The saving grace,” Blunt continued, “was that she fell passionately in love with the handsome Prince Albert, who was a modern thinker, a reformist. He truly loved Victoria and respected that his wife had been crowned queen. Albert was quite happy to be her consort, but he never presumed to act as the king.

“In a sense, loving Albert was Victoria’s greatest achievement. He came in with his very Teutonic ways and tempered some of Victoria’s emotion. They became this very successful couple. But she wouldn’t have been the success she was without him.”

The story of how their romance built an empire makes one of the year’s most elegant movies………

Article transcribed from: SUNDAY TIMES June 28, 2009
“Lifestyle” Newspaper Insert
Page 12
Pictures from the same article Page 12

Article by Barry Ronge

Carnarvon Castle Enters Harbour 1956 Port Elizabeth

The Trumpeting Place Stone Jerusalem Israel

Warwickshire Enters PE Harbour Algoa Bay Port Elizabeth History Archive Port Elizabeth
Original Source PE Library

'For GOD so Loved the World' Port Elizabeth

The heavens declare the glory of the LORD

The picture above is one of the marvels of the 20th century. Taken by the “Apollo Mission to the Moon” it is the first glimpse of earth seen free from the constraints of gravity, all thanks to NASA.

This is the view GOD had in mind when He created the cosmos, everything right down to the finest detail; the moon just far enough from earth so that the ocean would wax and wane harmoniously, the earth just far enough from the sun so that the earth would neither freeze or die from excessive over exposure from the radiation from the sun. It is, however, also the microscopic detail in GOD’s plan for the human race, fallen from grace. It is a plan birthed in the mercy of our Creator, “For GOD so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes on Him should not perish, but have eternal LIFE”. (John 3:16). This eternal LIFE is offered to humanity as a free gift only to those who willingly accept it. The gift of eternal LIFE is made possible in the person JESUS CHRIST as “there is no other name under heaven by which men can be saved…..”

We all know our life is finite: “All men are like the flowers of the field their glory fades and they are gone…”. After this comes the judgment, either to an afterlife ushering in the joy of eternal LIFE in the presence of GOD, or an eternal judgment in Hell which the Bible describes as the second Death, from which there is no escape. Hell is a place of torment, a literal eternal separation from a wonderful awesome GOD. Many reject this truth but it is as real as the law of gravity.

The Bible states that “ALL have sinned and have fallen short of the glory of GOD”. This biblical statement means that every man ever born has sinned against GOD by missing His Holy standard and perfection, the reason for which we will be judged. Man says, “No GOD”, not wanting GOD’s will but His own. This was Adam’s original sin in the Garden of Eden.

A mental picture can be made where Old Testament priests would lay their hands on a goat without spot or blemish to simulate the transference of the sin of Israel onto the sacrificial animal. It would then be chased into the desert to die, and with it the sin of the people. This typology is a forerunner of the Messiah Who would be the ultimate Sacrificial Lamb. JESUS died on a Cross for our Sin, we the guilty - JESUS the Righteous - JESUS the Perfect One – JESUS the Sinless – JESUS without blemish – JESUS our GOD and KING.

GOD LOVES the people of the WORLD so HE made a way for us to escape the coming judgment.

GOD’s WORD is clear:

• All of Humanity has sinned against GOD our FATHER.
• We cannot get to GOD by our own feeble attempts but GOD has come down to us in the form of His Son.
• We have to accept that we are sinners and therefore deserve GOD’s punishment.
• We have to accept GOD’s way of salvation and not some other way, or religious activity.
• JESUS died on the Cross for our sin, but we have to accept His sacrifice for us to be acceptable to our FATHER in heaven.
• We have to confess with our mouth that JESUS is LORD with a contrite heart, giving testimony to the word of our lips.
• We have to turn from our wicked ways.

Say this prayer and mean it with your whole heart:

Thank You FATHER for Your SON, JESUS CHRIST. Thank You that HE died for me on the Cross at Calvary, a horrible and unjust death, to give me eternal LIFE. I’m sorry for my SIN and I now turn to follow YOU as an obedient child. Thank You that YOU are a Friend to me, even ONE who sticks closer than a brother. Thank You for LOVING me so much and for YOUR promise that You will be with me till the end of the age.


The Glory of the Kingdom of GOD Port Elizabeth

St. John’s Church Havelock Street Algoa Bay Port Elizabeth History Archive PE Library

As a Christian, after being saved by GOD, I was always fascinated at the colourful personalities and exceptional character of the local church preachers. These are the men and women who came from our communities and who had been honed by GOD over their Christian lifetime to be the face of JESUS to people like me. These are servants of GOD in the true sense who’s lives are sometimes no less remarkable than kings.

One of my favourite times in the Christian community has been to visit other churches where I have enjoyed listening to the exposition of the Word experiencing first hand the power of the HOLY SPIRIT. Sometimes getting stuck in one parish can cloud one’s overall experience of GOD’s dynamic kingdom on earth. GOD has called myriads of men and women to start ministries on every corner of the earth; an outreach to sailors such as the harbour missions in Port Elizabeth, ministries to the destitute such as Jerusalem Ministries started from the cosy home of the Walmer suburb, an evangelical foot washing ministry, such as the one started by the Godly man Dave Cape to the cities of the world and many others….., all for the purpose of bringing people into the Kingdom and giving glory to JESUS CHRIST. These “Lights” of the Kingdom, as they are described by John the Apostle, can be likened to the many precious stones we collect as wealth objects. These “Voices of the Kingdom” remind me of Topaz, Emeralds, Diamonds, Sapphires, Rubies, Jasper, Amethyst, Beryl….a never ending kaleidoscope of beauty, colour and light emanating from the Word of GOD.

“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give some of the hidden manna to eat. And I will give him a white stone, and on the stone, a new name written which no one knows except him who receives it” Revelation 2:17