The world and, in particular, the people of Belgium lost an extraordinary servant King. Today marks the twenty-third anniversary of the shockingly early passing of King Baudouin I of the Belgians on 31 July 1993. He died of a massive heart attack while on vacation at the royal couple’s compound, Villa Astrida, in Motril, Southern Spain.
In 1964, British Pathé took footage during King Baudouin and Queen Fabiola’s official state visit to the Empire of Japan. Enjoy lovely Crown Princess Michiko – always chic and beautiful. There is a charming true story that unites King Baudouin with then Crown Prince Akohito. During a diplomatic stop-over for the King in Japan, Crown Prince Akihito requested to speak to Baudouin privately.
This generated much nervous buzz in the Belgian embassy, as it was highly unusual. Akihito requested Baudouin’s help getting his letters to Michiko in Europe, since she was supposedly sent there to separate the two. Baudouin took all of the letters Akihito had been trying to get the Japanese diplomatic corps to deliver to Europe in the pouches and the King delivered them himself to Michiko.
Additionally, he spoke to the Emperor on the behalf of Akihito and Michiko, helping pave the way for a beautiful marriage of the now Emperor and Empress of Japan. That is why Akihito and Michiko felt quite close to Baudouin and Fabiola and undoubtedly why Michiko paid her respects at Fabiola’s funeral in December 2014.
This footage is the sole property of British Pathé and they retain all legal rights. It is only presented here within the YouTube Plugin.
There once was a young man who exactly resembled young King Baudouin of the Belgians and this is what happened next…
21 November 1951 a small group of students is about to be talked about in the whole of Belgium. They rent a limousine and driver and distribute the roles of palace ministers, officers, King, and so on… Their target is none other than the Institute d’Heverlee, Sacred Heart – as the saying goes home of “eleven thousand virgins.” There they will be welcomed with open arms by a community of Sisters and the “King” will shamelessly visit the institute only to be discovered by a suspicious Bishop to end this epic student prank.
Baudouin and Fabiola had very clear and refined spiritual philosophies that combined to form a powerful love and caring for the Belgian people. As a shepherd king, Baudouin was known for the deep spiritual spring which bubbled up within his daily life embodying his personal dedication to his people, which dictated his daily aims and activities. He explained to a fellow pilgrim his purpose in being king was:
” to love his country, to pray for his country, and to suffer for his country. ” ¹
Paramount within him was his belief in the FIAT prayer that we ‘Always and everywhere be witnesses to the Lord.’ This dovetails exactly with Queen Fabiola’s remembrance card which states her simple and profound example to us all, reminding us to, Always say YES to God. May we always give thanks for those faithful pilgrims who have gone before us for their example to us as God’s children.
¹ from “Baudouin, King of the Belgians: The Hidden Life” by Cardinal Suenens.
Spanish castanets bring fire to the funeral of Spaniard Belgian Queen Fabiola
The castanets of Coro Rociero, the Vilvoorde clatter to the strains of “Olé Olé” rang out in the Cathedral of Saint Michael and Gudula during the funeral of beloved Belgian Queen Fabiola. The Spanish branch of the Queen Fabiola’s family sang along with the folk troupe, which was dressed in traditional costume. Queen Mathilde let her tears flow freely. For many, this was the emotional pinnacle of Fabiola’s funeral.
I’ve always been a casual student of royal history and particularly certain families which spark my interest. Recently I’ve been philosophically reflecting upon biblical and historical teachings on righteousness. There are some people that truly seem to live out Romans 6 as slaves to sin, but King Baudouin of Belgium certainly wasn’t one. He was a slave to righteousness. God reckoned him righteous and he was, indeed, a righteous man. And, when it came time to choose his queen, he likewise chose a righteous woman. This is where two of my interests intersected. The more I studied Baudouin and Fabiola, the more I was inspired by their lives, their words, their smiles. I had some rather good (I hope you agree) posts on some royal forums and didn’t want to lose track of any of that information, so I decided to start this blog. There is a companion YouTube Playlist and Pinterest board where I try to bring something NEW, not just the same pictures and the same subjective ideas. I hope you enjoy this blog. It is meant to inspire as I have been inspired by these two righteous souls.