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Queen’s Christmas message pays tribute to ‘beloved’ Philip

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Posted: Monday, December 27, 2021. 10:26 am CST.

By Aaron Humes: Spending her first Christmas without him, Queen Elizabeth II used her annual Christmas message to in part pay tribute to her late ‘beloved’ husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, according to the BBC.

The Queen stated, “Christmas can be hard for those who have lost loved ones. This year especially I understand why,” adding that she felt his presence over the festive period.

She noted of the Duke, who died in April aged 99 days before her actual birthday: “That mischievous, inquiring twinkle was as bright at the end as when I first set eyes on him…But life of course consists of final partings as well as first meetings. And as much as I and my family miss him, I know he would want us to enjoy Christmas…”

The framed photograph in view during the broadcast was taken during their diamond wedding anniversary in 2007 – and the Queen was wearing the same sapphire brooch that appears in the photograph, which she also wore on her honeymoon in 1947.

This week Buckingham Palace announced plans for a service of thanksgiving for the life of Prince Philip, to be held at Westminster Abbey in the spring.

The other primary theme of the annual broadcast was of “passing the baton” to the next generation, in a year when the 95-year-old monarch has had her own health problems. The Queen praised the work of Prince Charles and Prince William at the COP26 climate change summit and their commitment to the “stewardship of the environment”.

She looked ahead to the Platinum Jubilee next year, marking 70 years of her reign, which she hoped would bring a “sense of togetherness” and a chance to take stock of the “enormous changes” over those decades.

The Christmas broadcast, recorded in Windsor Castle, was the Queen’s most extensive appearance since having to withdraw from a series of events during the autumn.

There were glimpses of the royal family at events during the year, but there was no mentions of Prince Andrew, Prince Harry or Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, all news makers during the year for, in the case of the former, alleged sexual assault and for the two latter, speaking out against perceived mistreatment by the Royal Family and staff.

As a precaution against rising levels of the Omicron variant, the Queen is staying in Windsor Castle, rather than spending Christmas as usual on her Sandringham estate.

Members of her family have been with her on Christmas Day, including the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall.

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