JESUS CHRIST : OUR TRUE KING
Homily for the solenimity of Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, year b
Dan 7: 13-14
Rev 1: 5-8
John 18: 33b-37
Beloved in Christ, today marks the end of the Church’s liturgical year and from next week our attention will turn to the season of advent and our preparation for the coming of Christ. Today, also we celebrate the solenimity of Jesus Christ, the universal king with our focus directed towards the kingdom of heaven, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God as the sovereign Lord of all creation. This celebration thus addresses the greatness of God as well as the dignity he has given to his people. I have therefore chosen ” JESUS CHRIST : OUR TRUE KING” as our theme.
Beloved, it was Pope Pius X1 who instituted this feast on 11th December, 1925 for the universal church in his encyclical “QUAS PRIMAS”. During this period, many Christians (including Catholics )were doubting the authority and the existence of Christ as well as the power of the church to continue the authority of Christ. It was the era of the rise of non -Christian dictatorship and their attempt to assert authority over the church -respect for Christ and the church was waning.
Consequently, Pope Pius X1 wanted this feast to achieve the following three things :
1. That nations would see that the church has the right to freedom, and immunity from the state (Quas Primas, 32)
2. That leaders and nations would see that they are bound to give respect to Christ (Quas Primas, 31)
3. That the faithful would gain strength and courage from the celebration of this feast, since it reminds us that Christ must reign in our hearts, minds,wills, and bodies (Quas Primas, 33).
Beloved, this celebration is a response to the growing threats of communism, secularism, materialism, relativism and all the other ‘isms’ you have, that seek to make man and not God , as the most powerful force in the world. God cannot be eliminated from the life of man; for He is the foundation and the centre of every human life.
My dear friend, though historically Pope Pius X1 fixed this celebration to the last Sunday of October (sunday that preceeds the feast of All Saints ) and titled it “feast of our Lord Jesus Christ, the king; today thanks to Pope Paul V1 we celebrate it on the last Sunday of the liturgical year and we refer to it as “Solemnity of Jesus Christ, King of the Universe.
Beloved, the kingship of Jesus rests not upon the amount of force he brings but upon who He is. Hence , the kingship of Christ is glorious and demanding; for just as Christ bore witness to the truth, lived by it and died for it ,we too by our baptism are called to speak, live and spread the truth in a world that is constantly asking us to restrict our faith in God.
My dear friend , this call for restrictions cannot be embraced because the kingdom of Christ dwells within our hearts and not on a map and the cross is its defining landmark. For this reason, the kingdom of Christ is supreme,universal, eternal and spiritual. I therefore encourage you on this day to pray like the good thief; JESUS, REMEMBER ME , WHEN YOU COME INTO YOUR KINGDON.
This has been a Fr. Dolphyne’s presentation for www.padredolphyne.WordPress.com as we celebrate the solenimity of Christ the king, year b.
Kindly share this homily with your friends and May God richly bless you.