Prince Charles, first in line to the British throne, tested positive for coronavirus and is resting at the Balmoral Estate. The 71-year-old “has been displaying mild symptoms but otherwise remains in good health and has been working from home.” His wife, Camilla, the Dutchess of Cornwall, is with him. Queen Elizabeth II, who will be 94 next month, is said to be in good health. Balmoral Castle in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, is one of the queen’s personal estate houses. It has been in the family since 1852, when the property was purchased by Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria of Victorian Era fame, and the new castle was constructed by his design. It is built of granite quarried on the estate. It features a seven-story turreted clock tower. The family, with their nine children, spent time there, and Victoria spend extensive periods at Balmoral after Albert’s death. The estate covers 50,000 acres and includes plains, moors, forests (including 3,000 of old-growth Caledonian pine), mountains, valleys, lakes and streams. It is a working estate with hunting moors, forestry (10,000 tons of wood annually), farmland, cattle, ponies, and managed herds of deer. Fifty full-time and 50-100 part-time staff maintain the estate. Philip loves Balmoral and has added features such as water garden since the 1950s. Philip stays in Birkhall, a beautiful home nestled in a valley on the estate, near the river Muick. I, too, have an estate. I haven’t seen it yet, but it is under construction. As a joint-heir with Christ, I will occupy it one day. It has many advantages over Balmoral and Birkhall, three of which are that it is designed and built by God, it is eternal, and it is a free gift of God’s grace purchased by Jesus Christ. Oh, and there are no taxes. “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” (John 14:1-3).
(Friday Church News Notes, April 27, 2020, www.wayoflife.org email@example.com, 866-295-4143)