Queen Elizabeth’s Christmas message to acknowledge ‘bumpy’ year

Queen Elizabeth acknowledges 'bumpy' year in annual Christmas message

LONDON — Queen Elizabeth II will admit to a bumpy year for both Britain and the royal family during her annual Christmas message.

In excerpts released by Buckingham Palace and reviewed by The Associated Press, Elizabeth says about the need for reconciliation and forgiveness, "The path, of course, is not always smooth, and may at times this year have felt quite bumpy, but small steps can make a world of difference.”

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It is believed that Elizabeth is referring not only to the country’s struggle with Brexit, but the royal family’s challenges. Prince Andrew has withdrawn from public duties over his controversial friendship with sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, and a rift between Prince William and Prince Harry has played out in the public eye. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, along with 7-month-old Archie, will spend Christmas with Markle’s mother in Los Angeles, instead of with the royal family, E News reported.

Elizabeth also is contending with the frail health of Prince Philip, 98, who has been hospitalized for the past several days.

According to The Royal Family’s Instagram account, Queen Elizabeth’s holiday message will mainly focus on the 75th anniversary of D-Day and the commemorations the country held this year.