Queen Elizabeth II honors victims of terror in annual Christmas address


Queen Elizabeth II honors victims of terror in annual Christmas address

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - In this undated image supplied by Sky News, Queen Elizabeth II sits at a desk in the 1844 Room at Buckingham Palace, as she records her Christmas Day broadcast to the Commonwealth at Buckingham Palace, London. (Photo by Sky News via Getty Images)

Queen Elizabeth II gave her traditional annual Christmas address Monday, touching on the fact that many were likely viewing her on their smartphones and computer devices rather than on their television screens as was done 60 years ago.

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The video started with a children’s choir singing “God Save the Queen” before the queen appeared to share her message.

She spoke of the extremist attacks that have touched England throughout the past year, including the attacks in Manchester and London.

She hailed the “powerful identities” of many of whom she met and visited with after the attacks.

The queen, her husband Prince Philip and family members attended a church service Monday near Elizabeth’s country estate in Sandringham. They mingled with locals who came to watch them arrive.

In this year's Queen's Christmas Broadcast 2017, Her Majesty has talked about the theme of "home" and wished everyone a very happy Christmas. You can watch the full speech on our website - by following the link in our bio. "We think of our homes as places of warmth, familiarity and love; of shared stories and memories, which is perhaps why at this time of year so many return to where they grew up," Her Majesty said. "There is a timeless simplicity to the pull of home. "For many, the idea of “home” reaches beyond a physical building – to a home town or city.  This Christmas, I think of London and Manchester, whose powerful identities shone through over the past twelve months in the face of appalling attacks," The Queen said. The Queen also added... "Today we celebrate Christmas, which itself is sometimes described as a festival of the home.  Families travel long distances to be together. "Volunteers and charities, as well as many churches, arrange meals for the homeless and those who would otherwise be alone on Christmas Day.  We remember the birth of Jesus Christ whose only sanctuary was a stable in Bethlehem.  He knew rejection, hardship and persecution; and yet it is Jesus Christ’s generous love and example which has inspired me through good times and bad. "Whatever your own experiences this year; wherever and however you are watching,  I wish you a peaceful and very happy Christmas." #Christmas2017 #ChristmasDay2017 #QueensSpeech

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The royal family had a private lunch scheduled afterward. This is the first Christmas the family will be joined by Prince Harry’s fiancee, American actress Meghan Markle.

Elizabeth and Philip missed last year’s service because they had the flu.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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