“It was humbling that so many chose to mark the anniversary of a duty which passed to me 60 years ago,” she said as footage showed crowds lining the River Thames in the rain earlier this year for a boat pageant. “People of all ages took the trouble to take part in various ways and in many nations.”
The queen also reflected on Britain’s hosting of the Olympic Games in 2012, praising the “skill, dedication, training and teamwork of our athletes” and singling out the volunteers who devoted themselves “to keeping others safe, supported and comforted.”
Wearing a turquoise coat and matching hat, the monarch rode to church in a Bentley, accompanied by granddaughters Beatrice and Eugenie. Her husband, Prince Philip, walked from the house to the church with other members of the royal family.
Three familiar faces were missing from the family outing. Prince William is spending the holiday with his pregnant wife Kate and his in-laws in the southern England village of Bucklebury. Prince Harry is serving with British troops in Afghanistan.
After the church service, the royals usually gather to watch the queen’s prerecorded television broadcast, a tradition that began with a radio address by King George V in 1932.
The queen has made a prerecorded Christmas broadcast on radio since 1952 and on television since 1957. She writes the speeches herself and the broadcasts mark the rare occasion on which the queen voices her own opinion without government consultation.
Her switch to 3-D was not the only technological leap for prominent British figures this Christmas.
The Archbishops of Canterbury and York chose to tweet their sermons for the first time, in order to bring Christmas to a new digital audience.
In his speech, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams said he has been inspired by meeting victims of suffering over the past decade while leading the world’s 80 million-strong Anglican Communion.
Delivering his final Christmas Day sermon from Canterbury Cathedral, Archbishop Williams also acknowledged how a vote against allowing women to become bishops has damaged the credibility of the church.
Still, he said, it was “startling” to see after the vote how many people “turned out to have a sort of investment in the church, a desire to see the church looking credible and a real sense of loss when — as they saw it — the church failed to sort its business out.”
J.J. Abrams: ‘I’d rather be in audience’ for ‘Star Wars’
“Star Trek” director J.J. Abrams said in November that he wouldn’t be taking the reins of another intergalactic franchise: Disney’s upcoming “Star Wars” extension. But a new interview in Empire Magazine reveals that Mr. Abrams initially did entertain the idea of putting his stamp on “Star Wars.”
The “Lost” creator said that he and Kathleen Kennedy, the series’s new overseer, had “very early conversations” about how he might be involved in “Star Wars: Episode VII’s” development.View Entire Story
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