Queen Elizabeth holds first in-person engagement since missing Remembrance Sunday service due to strained back

Fox News Flash top entertainment headlines November 16

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Queen Elizabeth II met with the British military’s chief of staff on Wednesday, making it her first time she was seen carrying out a face-to-face engagement since she missed the national Remembrance Sunday service due to a sprained back.

The 95-year-old was spotted chatting with Gen. Nick Carter in Windsor Castle’s Oak Room. The reigning monarch, who wore a colorful floral dress for the occasion, stood to welcome Carter, who is preparing to step down from his role as the armed forces chief at the end of November.

Concerns about Elizabeth’s health were raised last month when she spent a night in a London hospital after being admitted for medical tests, her first in eight years. Then in late October, Buckingham Palace confirmed the queen was advised by doctors to rest for at least the next two weeks and only take on light duties with zero traveling.

Those concerns intensified after the queen pulled out at the last minute from Sunday’s national Remembrance service. Buckingham Palace officials, who had said it was the monarch’s “first intention” to make the event, announced on Sunday that she decided she had to miss the ceremony because she sprained her back.

Queen Elizabeth II receives General Sir Nick Carter, Chief of the Defence Staff, during an audience in the Oak Room at Windsor Castle on November 17, 2021 in Windsor, England. General Sir Nick is relinquishing his role as the Chief of Defence Staff at the end of this month.
(Photo by Steve Parsons – Pool/Getty Images)

On Tuesday, Elizabeth canceled her appearance at the Church of England’s national assembly, marking it the first time she has missed the General Synod in its 51-year history, People magazine reported.

Her youngest son, Prince Edward, represented the monarch in her absence. Still, the queen shared a reflective message, including a nod to her late husband Prince Philip, who passed away in April of this year at age 99.

“It is hard to believe that it is over 50 years since Prince Philip and I attended the very first meeting of the General Synod,” said Elizabeth in a statement, as quoted by the outlet. “None of us can slow the passage of time.”

Elizabeth also praised the church for offering “hope” during the coronavirus pandemic.

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II used a cane during a royal engagement in October.
(Arthur Edwards/Pool Photo via AP)

“Of course, in our richly diverse modern society, the well-being of the nation depends on the contribution of people of all faiths, and of none,” said Elizabeth. “But for people of faith, the last few years have been particularly hard, with unprecedented restrictions in accessing the comfort and reassurance of public worship. For many, it has been a time of anxiety, of grief, and of weariness.”

“Yet the Gospel has brought hope, as it has done throughout the ages; and the Church has adapted and continued its ministry, often in new ways — such as digital forms of worship,” the queen shared.

The outlet noted that the meeting takes place every five years to coincide with the diocesan elections.

“Your Graces and members of the Synod, the next five years will not always be straightforward,” said Elizabeth. “Like every new Synod, you have inherited weighty responsibilities with many issues to address, reports to debate, and difficult decisions to make. You may have to consider proposals on governance, on conduct, on the use of resources, and on other issues; and on a vision for the future of the Church.”

The queen, seen here with her son Prince Charles, has long enjoyed robust health and is said to hate having people make a fuss.
(Photo by Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty Images)

“In some areas, there will, of course, be differing views and my hope is that you will be strengthened with the certainty of the love of God, as you work together and draw on the Church’s tradition of unity in fellowship for the tasks ahead,” she added.

The queen has long enjoyed robust health and is said to hate having people make a fuss. But she has reluctantly accepted advice to cut back on her blistering schedule in recent weeks.

She canceled a trip to mark 100 years since the creation of Northern Ireland on Oct. 20. That was followed only days later by the announcement that she would not appear at the U.N. climate conference in Glasgow — a great disappointment to Britain’s Conservative government, which was hoping to stress the importance of the two-week meeting to save the Earth from uncontrollable global warming.

In addition to using a walking cane, Elizabeth was also reportedly advised by doctors to give up cocktails and horse riding.

Queen Elizabeth II honored her late husband, Prince Philip, this month. The Duke of Edinburgh passed away in April of this year at age 99.
(AP/Scott Heppell)

Still, that hasn’t stopped the royal from keeping busy. She was recently seen making a jovial video call with The Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry. The queen was also spotted driving solo around the grounds of Windsor Castle.

Elizabeth, Britain’s longest-lived and longest-reigning monarch, is due to celebrate her Platinum Jubilee — 70 years on the throne — next year.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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