Kate Middleton and Prince William made their Christmas debut as the Prince and Princess of Wales

Promotes The Royal Family of Wales Christmas 2022

Samir Hussein/WireImage Princess Charlotte, Kate Middleton, Prince George and Prince William

Kate Middleton and Prince William are returning to a royal family tradition this Christmas.

The couple — along with their three children, Prince George, 9, Princess Charlotte, 7, and Prince Louis, 4 — joined King Charles III, Queen Camilla and other royals in attending the holiday mass at St Mary Magdalene Church in Norfolk. Although Prince George and Princess Charlotte made their first appearances on Christmas Day in 2019, this was the first time the entire family of five took part in the holiday walk to church, with Prince Louis joining in on the fun.

It has marked the return of the traditional royal Christmas outing after the family celebrated separately for the past two years amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The outing was also the first Christmas outing for William and Kate, both in their 40s, as Prince and Princess of Wales. King Charles officially gave the titles to his eldest son and daughter-in-law just a day after Queen Elizabeth II died in September.

Related: Everything you’ve been missing in Kate Middleton and Prince William’s Christmas photoshoot — like George’s no-hole shirt!

Prince Louis Royal Birthday 2022

Prince Louis Royal Birthday 2022

Samir Hussein/WireImage Prince Louis

King Charles, 74, and Queen Camilla, 75, announced earlier that they would host Christmas at Sandringham, Queen Elizabeth’s beloved country estate in Norfolk, in keeping with longstanding family traditions.

They will also keep other traditions, such as the exchange of Christmas gifts on Christmas Eve. After church, the royals will gather at Sandringham for a lunch of roast turkey followed by steamed fruit pudding, before they all sit down to watch King Charles’ first Christmas speech at 3pm.

Kate Middleton Kids Royal Christmas 2022

Kate Middleton Kids Royal Christmas 2022

Samir Hussein/WireImage Prince George, Prince Louis, Kate Middleton and Princess Charlotte

Kate also started a new royal holiday tradition. On 15 December, she hosted her second annual Christmas Carols Concert at Westminster Abbey, which was broadcast on Christmas Eve. The event was a family affair — Princess Kate entered with Prince William, Prince George and Princess Charlotte, while King Charles and Queen Camilla also sat front row for the service.

Kate’s parents and sister were also in attendance, along with many members of the royal family.

The Abbey Choir sang traditional carols along with performances by guests including Craig David and Les Miserables Superstar Samantha Parks, and a special duet by opera singer Alfie Poe and Spice Girl Melanie C. Paddington Star Hugh Bonneville.

Princess Charlotte Kate Middleton Royal Christmas 2022

Princess Charlotte Kate Middleton Royal Christmas 2022

Daniel Leal/AFP via Getty Images Princess Charlotte and Kate Middleton

Related: Christmas Queen! See all of Kate Middleton’s flawless vacations over the years

Of course, Queen Elizabeth’s absence will be most felt during the first Christmas since her death.

“The first year is the most difficult, because it’s always the first thing you notice,” the former Queen’s crew member tells PEOPLE.

Prince William attends Christmas mass at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle

Prince William attends Christmas mass at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle

Julian Parker/British Press via Getty Prince William in 1987

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Prince William first joined the royal family for their annual Christmas outing at the age of five in 1987, when they celebrated the holiday at Windsor Castle. Dressed in a light blue trench coat and knee socks, the future monarch waved to photographers as he walked past his mother, Princess Diana.

Princess Kate made her first royal Christmas appearance in 2011, months after her spring wedding to Prince William.

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