The Cost of a Monarchy
How much do the Queen cost us? When you watch her rolling down the Mall in gold carriages accompanied by red-clad troops, the more cynical among us might start reflecting on the apparent cost. The institution in fact costs us £35.7 million per year, which covers the expense of maintaining the palaces, the travel and security of Her Majesty's 400 annual engagements, and the various receptions and garden parties. Lesser royals' expenditure is not paid for from the public purse, and the Queen is unsalaried.
Let's contrast that with the French presidency which costs £91 million and the Italian which costs £181.5 million. It's worth pointing out however, that some presidencies are executive rather than ceremonial, meaning they are effectively the same as monarch and prime minister rolled into one. So what about ceremonial ones? The Polish presidency costs £34 million per year, a little cheaper than our Queen. If, however, you calculate the cost by the size of the population, the £0.62 cost per head of having the Queen works out much cheaper than most other heads of state.
I'm a monarchist, but this isn't because the Queen only costs me only 62 pence each year. I know that some Christians are not supporters of our Queen. Their love of fundamental equality puts them at odds with the hereditary principle of one person being great simply because of who they are, not what they've achieved. Indeed, if I were American, I'd be a republican, proud of the fact that we sent King George's army back across the sea, making a stand for democracy. Yet in Britain, I believe in monarchy. Not the powerful, ruling monarchies of the Middle Ages, but constitutional monarchy, in which kings and queens reign, leaving the ruling to others.
I believe human monarchy is a picture of Christ. He was King long before He created the worlds or redeemed His Church. In other words, He is great because of who He is, not because of anything He had first to do. His being renders Him King. It is simply who He is. And His monarchy is greater than Britain's. He gives richly to those who call upon Him, says Paul in Romans 10. In return, He doesn't want 62p, He wants my heart.