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Britain's queen reflects on a year of celebration

By CNN Staff
December 26, 2012 -- Updated 0935 GMT (1735 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The queen's Christmas message calls for service to others
  • She mentions her Diamond Jubilee and the London Olympics as highlights of 2012
  • "This past year has been one of great celebration for many," the queen says
  • Queen Elizabeth prays that Christ's example and teaching inspire service

(CNN) -- Britain's Queen Elizabeth II reflected on a year of personal and Olympic celebration in a Christmas message Tuesday that emphasized serving others.

"This past year has been one of great celebration for many," the 86-year-old monarch said in a videotaped message, reflecting on her Diamond Jubilee, which she called "especially memorable for me and my family."

She added: "It was humbling that so many chose to mark the anniversary of a duty which passed to me 60 years ago."

Photos: Diamond Jubilee celebrations

A look back at the Queen's Jubilee year

Her message also cited "a splendid summer of sport" with the London Olympic and Paralympic Games, which she called inspiring and filled with excitement and drama.

Queen Elizabeth II watches the recording of her Christmas message with producer John McAndrew and director John Bennett (R). The speech will be broadcast to the Commonwealth in 3D for the first time in the White Drawing Room of Buckingham Palace. Queen Elizabeth II watches the recording of her Christmas message with producer John McAndrew and director John Bennett (R). The speech will be broadcast to the Commonwealth in 3D for the first time in the White Drawing Room of Buckingham Palace.
UK royal Christmas preparations 2012
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Photos: Royals\' Christmas preps Photos: Royals' Christmas preps

The queen noted that Christmas celebrates God sending his only son "to serve, not to be served."

"He restored love and service to the center of our lives in the person of Jesus Christ," she said. "It is my prayer this Christmas Day that his example and teaching will continue to bring people together to give the best of themselves in the service of others."

Prince William: 30 years in photos

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