CHRIST THE KING
Here we are at the feast of Christ the King which marks the end of the liturgical year as well as the end of the year of faith. We stop today and think about the kingship of Christ the Lord and we also think about the faith that he left us which we have been celebrating in a particular way over the last twelve months. The goal for this Year of Faith has been to conform our lives to Jesus Christ, and to not only learn the Faith but to live faith in the world where we are.
The Feast of Christ the King was established by Pope Pius XI in 1925 as an antidote to secularism, a way of life which leaves God out of man’s thinking and living life as if God did not exist. The feast is intended to proclaim in a striking and effective manner Christ’s royalty over individuals, families, society, governments, and nations. The way to serve Christ our King is to work for the coming of his kingdom. In working for the relief of the deprived, the oppressed and the outcast we are serving Christ in person, because he fully identifies himself with all those in need. Those in the gospel reading who were excluded from God’s kingdom were guilty of the sin of omission. It was the sin of the priest and the Levite who passed by on the other side the side farthest from the battered body of the traveler.
The disciple of Christ the King cannot afford the luxury of saying “I keep myself to myself” or “I do nobody any harm.” To be deaf to the cries of the oppressed is to be deaf to Christ. To be blind to the agony of those about us is to be blind to Christ. To take Christ as our Shepherd involves becoming a shepherd to Christ present to us in the sufferings and deprivations of others.
As we conclude the liturgical year, are you with Christ? Is your life an open sacrifice in a demonstration of love? As we conclude this year, we too embrace the cross and walk in the victory of the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. What began as a humble event—the birth of the Messiah—has changed the world. As we conclude the Year of Faith, let’s not forget the beautiful truths that we have learned, but let’s continue to learn more about them, celebrate them, live them, and pass them on. It is our prayer that when people look at us, they will say, “Christ is King.”