Minister's Moment: A Revolutionary Document
A Revolutionary Document
A few years ago I had the opportunity to visit the English village of Bury St. Edmunds—so-named because St. Edmund is buried there. While there we toured the ruins of a medieval abbey, once one of the largest in all Europe. Little remains of the church walls except for a place near the altar. Embedded in this section of wall is a plaque listing the names of several nobles. In 1215 these men took an oath at that altar, vowing to confront King John about his treatment of the nobility, a confrontation that took place near Runnymeade. Out of that event came the Magna Charta, the document that is the basis of English law (and, to a great extent, U.S. law), and the nearest thing England has to a written constitution.