Christ the King
“Jesus, Remember Me When You Come Into Your Kingdom.”
This Sunday, the Church celebrates the end of this Liturgical Year (and the beginning of the next) with a relatively new feast: Christ the King. The concept of Christ as King is as old as the Gospels, but this particular feast was just introduced in the Western liturgical calendar in 1925. Pope Pius XI instituted the feast via the encyclical "Quas Primas" ‘in the context of the growing secularist nationalism that followed the fall of European kingdoms after World War I, and decided to establish the solemnity to point to a king "of whose kingdom there shall be no end.”’ (Source: Catholic News Agency, reference available upon request)
As Catholics, we ‘crown’ the end and the beginning of all things with the Kingship of Christ, recognizing and reminding ourselves that no mater what, Christ is King. No politician, no celebrity, no revolutionary, no ideology, regardless of popularity, is going to ‘save us’, much less bring about the reign of the Kingdom of God. None but the King once crowned with thorns, who chose a cross as His throne, will bring the true peace, order, and paradise that we long for.
If we wish for Christ to reign over the whole world, He must first reign in our hearts. Is Christ King of our lives? Of our homes? Of our families, our time, our morality, our finances, our priorities? This Feast of Christ the King, the ‘Liturgical New Year’ as it were, is a great time to assess this and make a firm resolution to cast out whatever false kings reign in our hearts and replace them with the One True King.
I’ll give the last word to Pope Pius XI:
“This kingdom (of Christ) is spiritual and is concerned with spiritual things …. The gospels present this kingdom as one which men prepare to enter by penance, and cannot actually enter except by faith and by baptism, which, though an external rite, signifies and produces an interior regeneration. This kingdom is opposed to none other than to that of Satan and to the power of darkness. It demands of its subjects a spirit of detachment from riches and earthly things, and a spirit of gentleness. They must hunger and thirst after justice, and more than this, they must deny themselves and carry the cross.” (Pope Pius XI, Quas Primas)
God love you,