Christ the King
This Sunday is the Solemnity of Christ the King, and it brings an end to Ordinary Time in this Church calendar year. It is never referred to as the 34th Sunday in Ordinary Time, even though it begins the 34th (and final) week of Ordinary Time. Next Sunday is the First Sunday (and beginning) of Advent and the new liturgical year. In Advent, we prepare for the two comings of Christ. His first as a baby in Bethlehem, and then His second…when He returns as a King in glory, at the end of time for our final judgment. Today’s celebration of Jesus’ Kingship is meant to help prepare us for that final, and critically important, coming of Christ.
Although this feast exalts the royal and divine attributes of Christ, we hear Ezekiel, in the first reading, prophesy the coming of a Messiah who will live as a humble servant, focusing his efforts on seeking out the lost, the strays, the injured and the sick. And then in our Gospel, we hear that Messiah, Jesus, humbly explain to his followers that He is glorified and honored when we emulate Him and follow His example by looking out for and attending to the needs of our brothers and sisters in need, and that whatsoever we do (or do not do) for one of these least ones, we do (or refuse to do) for Him.
His Blessed Mother Mary, along with the Angel of Portugal, advised us at Fatima, that her Son, whose most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity is truly present in all the tabernacles of the world. rather than being glorified, has been greatly offended. He has been offended, not only by the reluctance that mankind has shown for caring for one another, but also by the outrages, sacrilegious and indifference that have been directed to His Real Presence. We hear over and over in the parables of Jesus, about Kings who have retaliated against those who offended and expressed indifference towards their Majesty.
I would like to propose a response for us as a parish to, as a family of faith, pray and perform acts in reparation for the myriad sins by which Christ our King is offended. And let us make it a point to sincerely acknowledge the gift of His Real Presence in our church. As you know, we are trying hard as a parish to answer Mary’s call for us to make sacrifices, to pray for poor sinners and pray in reparation for the outrageous sins by which Christ our King is offended. His Magnificent Presence is always there in our beautiful gold Tabernacle, and three times monthly (soon to be four) we honor that gift of His Presence with a 24-hour exposition in our beautiful new gold monstrance. Please consider, if you are not already participating, joining our Eucharistic Adoration “Society of Adorers.” The benefits are out of this world. Please call or visit after any Mass, either Carole Borz (our Adoration Chairwoman) or myself, to convey your interest in joining in the holiest of endeavors at our parish.
This final Feast, honoring Christ the King, in this final week of Ordinary Time, transitions us to the “preparatory and patient-waiting mind-set” that the liturgy of Advent presents for us. This is a time for humble, expectant, quasi-penitential waiting (and for moderation in things temporal), for both the coming celebration of the Savior’s birth, and for the coming of His Glorious appearance on the last day.
Jesus is a King like no other. The only crown our King ever wore was made of thorns and brambles. And, as we conclude the season of Ordinary Time, and move into Advent, let us also make an accounting of our Stewardship, before our King comes. Are we supportive of our parish church financially as well as volunteering with our time and talent? Are we generous, and are we caring, with regard to the least of our brothers and sisters? Have we truly been loyal subjects to our King? Do we truly treat Christ as a Sovereign over us, or have we been unconsciously treating Him more like a “servant” who is there only to answer our requests and to do our will?
Our Annual Stewardship of Treasure renewal is being scheduled for early December. Please pray and discern your commitment. Our parish continues to grow in numbers of families, however the much needed loyal financial support has not been growing, and has in fact been falling off a bit. My desire for each of these appeals is that everyone, every family, will simply make a pledge in the amount determined by your ability to make a sacrificial gift. The size does not matter. The sacrifice is what does matter. For if every family would prayerfully discern and pledge to give something, no matter how small, we would be in excellent shape. Excellent shape spiritually as well as financially. For our response is really a spiritual faith-based response to Jesus’ call to be disciples.
Let us pray that with the coming of Advent, the Jesus will lead us, and guide us, in our ways of service, helping us to show our love for God (as he has requested) by how we love and serve one another, especially the least among us.
Peace and prayers,