MU: ‘Victoria and Abdul’ film provides insight into cultural changes today
Mothers’ Union and Damaris Media, the PR and Communications Agency which provides film accompaniments and resources for church and community groups, have teamed up to provide a companion booklet to ‘Victoria and Abdul’, Judi Dench’s latest film. It is especially appropriate for MU to be involved as Queen Victoria was Mothers’ Union’s first Royal Patron.
The film is released on 15th September and a downloadable booklet is available on Mothers’ Union’s website mothersunion.org/VictoriaAndAbdul
Daniel McAllister, Mothers’ Union’s Head of Fundraising and Communications said,
“With Victoria and Abdul’s release, I am excited that members, churches and the wider public will not only be entertained, but will be able to access a tool, through the booklet, which highlights the enormous policy and culture change issues we face around the world today.”
The film is an historical drama revealing the extraordinary true story of an unexpected friendship in the later years of Queen Victoria’s (Academy Award winner Judi Dench) remarkable rule. When Abdul Karim (Ali Fazal), a young clerk, travels from India to participate in the Queen’s Golden Jubilee, he is surprised to find favour with the Queen herself. As the Queen questions the constrictions of her long-held position, the two forge an unlikely and devoted alliance with a loyalty to one another that her household and inner circle all attempt to destroy. As the friendship deepens, the Queen begins to see a changing world through new eyes and joyfully reclaims her humanity.
The issues addressed within the film of breaking down barriers and welcoming the stranger will be reflected upon from a biblical perspective in the booklet. Throughout the movement’s 140 year history, Mothers’ Union has spoken out against injustice and advocated for policy change at all levels. Mothers’ Union believes the themes running through “Victoria & Abdul” are as relevant today as they were then.
Remembering Herts TA soldiers at Passchendaele 100 years on
To mark the hundredth anniversary of The Battle of Passchendale, St. Alban’s Church, Warners End, Hemel Hempstead held a special Sunday Morning Service. The Hertfordshire chairman of the Royal Anglian Regiment Association, Major Bill O’Connor T.D. related the events of the fateful morning 100 years ago.
Alongside the Five hundred men of the First Battalion, the Hertfordshire Regiment were volunteer Territorials from Hertfordshire towns and villages, drawn from the farm yards of Gaddesden, the Cress beds of Boxmoor and, in large numbers, from the paper mills of Apsley. Together, they advanced across open ground towards the enemy positions at the start of the battle, through machine gun and artillery fire. Within 2 hours over a quarter of their number had been killed, including their Commanding Officer. Of the remainder, only 130 were unwounded. With not a single officer left standing, it fell to the Battalion’s Padre and the Regimental Sergeant Major to tend the wounded and to prepare the survivors for a possible German counter-attack.
And so the congregation paid tribute to the Territorials of the Hertfordshire Regiment, part-time volunteers. People called them the ‘Saturday Night Soldiers’, but it was on a Tuesday morning that they went forth for King and Country one hundred years ago.
The Vicar of Warners End and Gadebridge, the Rev’d Pete Stevenson, read from Lawrence Binyon’s evocative poem “For the Fallen”. After a minute’s silence, the service continued with the singing of the Regimental Hymn ‘Who Would True Valour See.’
Mr Stevenson said afterwards that it was right and fitting to pay tribute to the memory of those young Territorial Army soldiers who fought so bravely in such appalling circumstances a century ago. (With thanks to W O Connor)