Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have experienced no shortage of public opinion for choosing to spend the holidays in Canada away from the royal family this year, but now, Queen Elizabeth has finally spoken up about it, which should settle the matter. In Queen Elizabeth's Christmas 2019 address, the British monarch proved to be one of the couple's most staunch supporters as she highlighted the importance of "harmony and understanding." While she didn't mention the parents-of-one by name, her reference to baby Archie was so touching, and shows that the royal family is standing together as a united front.
On Dec. 25, the long-reigning leader hinted the Sussexes — the youngest one, in particular — were on her mind as she addressed the nation with a lesson on overcoming "long-held differences and deep-seated divisions."
"Two hundred years on from the birth of my great, great grandmother, Queen Victoria, Prince Philip and I have been delighted to welcome our eighth great grandchild into our family," she said during her televised speech. "Of course, at the heart of the Christmas story lies the birth of a child: a seemingly small and insignificant step overlooked by many in Bethlehem. But in time, through his teaching and by his example, Jesus Christ would show the world how small steps taken in faith and in hope can overcome long-held differences and deep-seated divisions to bring harmony and understanding."
While Prince Harry and Markle's decision to skip out on the family's annual celebration at Sandringham has been a controversial one, it's not the first time the palace has stated the decision to spend the holiday in Canada with Markle's mom, Doria Ragland, had the Queen's complete backing.
In a statement shared back in November, a spokesperson for Buckingham Palace said:
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are looking forward to extended family time towards the end of this month. Having spent the last two Christmases at Sandringham, Their Royal Highnesses will spend the holiday this year, as a new family, with the Duchess’ mother Doria Ragland. This decision is in line with precedent set previously by other members of the Royal Family, and has the support of Her Majesty The Queen.
While the former Suits star and Prince Harry have yet to publicly comment on the negative press their decision has received, they appear to be enjoying their holidays up north. Just days after sharing an adorable digital GIF Christmas card showing the couple hanging out with baby Archie, they took to their official Instagram account to send their followers well wishes in honor of the holiday.
"Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas," the message read, alongside emojis of a Christmas tree, Santa, and a snowman.
The Palace has yet to announce the Sussex family's plans for New Year's, and they did not respond to a previous Elite Daily email inquiring about the subject. However, it wouldn't be too surprising if Markle and Prince Harry continue to eschew tradition and decide to ring in 2020 away from the royal family.