King Charles: Ali Miraj reveals sheer emotion at monarch's Christmas message - 'I welled up'

The political commentator heaped praise on the monarch following his first Christmas broadcast

Published Last updated

Ali Miraj has admitted that King Charles III’s Christmas speech caused him to “well up”.

The political commentator heaped praise on the monarch following his first Christmas broadcast, saying the King “struck the tone perfectly” with his message.

Charles spoke on the cost-of-living crisis as Brits struggle with increasing costs of various aspects of life such as energy and fuel.

Mr Miraj, reacting to Charles taking on the responsibility of delivering the Christmas message following the death of Queen Elizabeth II, said: “He really struck the tone perfectly.

“He wanted to tap into that sense of it being really difficult right now with the cost-of-living crisis, he mentioned a time of great anxiety and hardship.

“He also gave a nod to the public services, the ambulances and the NHS, teachers, army etc.

“I also think he wanted to show he’s a defender of faith in general. Not just the faith.

“This is something that’s very important to him, he mentioned different religious groups in the country and what they’ve done to help with the cost-of-living crisis.

“You could really see the baton passing from his late mother to him. He really stamped his impression on this speech, and I thought it was quite emotional actually.

“To be honest with you, I did well up. I watched it twice. It was quite a moment.”

King Charles spoke on a variety of issues in his Christmas broadcast.
King Charles spoke on a variety of issues in his Christmas broadcast.

Charles spoke about the “great anxiety and hardship” experienced by many trying to “pay their bills and keep their families fed and warm” during his televised message, which featured footage of a food bank and other scenes of meals being distributed to the homeless.

The country is grappling with an economic crisis due in part to the war in Ukraine and the monarch also praised volunteers, paying tribute to the “wonderfully kind people” who donated food or their time.

Charles delivered his historic Christmas broadcast standing in the quire of St George’s Chapel, mirroring the late Queen’s 1999 festive address, and it followed his mother’s well-established template, a personal reflection on the year, touching on current issues and with a Christian framework.

But the King also recognised other faiths, highlighting how religious communities were helping those in financial difficulties and, like Christians, believed in the “power of light overcoming darkness”.

The central theme was a celebration of “selfless dedication”, a value embodied by Queen Elizabeth and reflected in the actions of many, from the emergency services to public spirited individuals, which helped to build and strengthen communities.

The pre-recorded message began with Charles reflecting on how he was standing “so close to where my beloved mother, the late Queen, is laid to rest with my dear father” in the King George VI Memorial Chapel, and he thanked the public for the “love and sympathy” expressed in cards and messages of condolence.

He also described how the festive period was a “poignant time” for bereaved families, adding “We feel their absence at every familiar turn of the season and remember them in each cherished tradition”.

Charles said he shared the late Queen’s “faith in people” who can touch the lives of others with “goodness and compassion”, something he described as the “essence of our community and the very foundation of our society”.

These qualities were reflected in the “selfless dedication” of the armed forces, health and social care professionals, teachers and all those who work in public service.

His words come as the nation faces a series of strikes by public sector workers, including nurses, ambulance workers and Border Force staff.

Charles added: “And at this time of great anxiety and hardship, be it for those around the world facing conflict, famine or natural disaster, or for those at home finding ways to pay their bills and keep their families fed and warm, we see it in the humanity of people throughout our nations and the Commonwealth who so readily respond to the plight of others.

“I particularly want to pay tribute to all those wonderfully kind people who so generously give food or donations, or that most precious commodity of all, their time, to support those around them in greatest need, together with the many charitable organizations which do such extraordinary work in the most difficult circumstances.”

Footage was shown of the armed forces and emergency services at work, from soldiers carrying sandbags to a speeding ambulance, followed by doctors and nurses on a ward and care workers in a home.