Saturday, November 24, 2012

Christ the King

The last Sunday of the Liturgical Year is celebrated as the feast of Christ the King. Before we begin the new ecclesiastical year with the first Sunday of Advent, we gather up in one glorious pean of gratitude, the memory of all the blessings that our loving Lord has bestowed on us, and praise Him for His greatness, wisdom, power, and beauty.

People who live in a country ruled by a monarchy probably have an easier time relating to this feast than we do. In our democratic society even our highest ranking officials are just ordinary men and women who happen, this year, to be in a position of authority. But where a nation is governed by a king, the people look on their monarch as somewhat different. He was born to rule. He has that right by birth, by his blood line. He is expected to be wise, moral, kind, a good example to his people.

So we have to really work at conceiving the notion of a perfect ruler. As we think of all the good qualities he should have we must imagine someone infinitely more majestic and perfect, more powerful, wise, beautiful, loving. Then we begin to get a sense of Christ the King.

When an earthly king is in his throne room or audience hall he, and his queen beside him, follow all the proper protocol. Words and gestures are all planned and the script followed exactly. It is a glorious time with their people and the royal couple enjoy it as much as do their subjects. However back in the privacy of their apartments they enjoy the freedom of spontaneous intimacy and love.

So too, we thrill to be with our Lord and King, Jesus, in the beautiful celebration of the Liturgy when we join in praising and thanking Him through music, flowers, incense, scripture readings and homilies. Then we have our private prayer time when we speak heart to heart, tell Him of our love, receive His love, ask for favors and offer ourselves to His service. Let us not miss these moments of intimacy and love for this is what we were created for.

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