Christ the King: Will reign in our lives forever
I found myself in a situation recently that I haven't experienced in quite a while - standing in a long line at the bank.
I was conducting business that required help from a teller. I mused that if not for e-checks, credit cards, direct deposit, and online banking, the lines at banks would probably be much longer.
There was a time when transferring funds meant literally carrying one's hard currency from one place to another - a slower, more laborious task. But because we have short memories we often consider mere waiting in bank lines an inconvenience.
Christ the King
2 Samuel 5:1-3
(Sunday, Nov. 25, 2007)
Psalm 122:1-2, 3-4, 4-5
The second reading for the feast of Christ the King mentions transfer of something more precious than gold as a reminder that the kingdom of God's "beloved Son" is not simply some abstract principle or imaginary place where Christ alone dwells. The reign of Christ is a state of real and profound transformation that he willingly shares with you and me. Even more significantly, our transfer from the "power of darkness" takes place through the blood of Christ which reconciles everything to himself. It is through Christ's efforts, not ours, that this "transaction" takes place, encompassing all of creation.
The Gospel of Luke uses the exchange between the two thieves at Calvary to underscore the point that even when Christ's kingship isn't obvious to the human observer, it is in fact present.
For Luke's first-century community of believers - innocents suffering the persecution reserved for criminals - it was an essential reminder that Christ already had suffered these things and yet maintained his lordship over all. The Gospel and Paul's letter to the Colossians, when read together, give us the big picture of Christ's kingship throughout eternity, from before the creation of the universe to the moment of our death and far beyond to the end of time.
What circumstances in your life right now obscure the fact that Christ reigns over all things?
What can you do this week to remind yourself and others in need of hope of the "bigger picture"?
The church places this feast at the end of the liturgical year just before Advent to instill in us the hope that the same Christ who has always reigned will continue to reign both in our hearts and in human history despite all appearances to the contrary. Now that's something to meditate on while standing in line at the bank!
This column is offered in cooperation with the North Texas Catholic of Fort Worth, Texas.
This week's readings
Week of Nov. 25 - Dec. 1, 2007
Sunday, November 25, 2007
The Solemnity of Christ the King
Reading I: 2 Sm 5:1-3
Reading II: Col 1:12-20
Gospel: Lk 23:35-43
Monday, November 26, 2007
Reading I: Dn 1:1-6, 8-20
Gospel: Lk 21:1-4
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Reading I: Dn 2:31-45
Gospel: Lk 21:5-11
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Reading I: Dn 5:1-6, 13-14, 16-17, 23-28
Gospel: Lk 21:12-19
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Reading I: Dn 6:12-28
Gospel: Lk 21:20-28
Friday, November 30, 2007
Feast of Saint Andrew, Apostle
Reading I: Romans 10:9-18
Gospel: Mt 4:18-22
Saturday, December 1, 2007
Reading I: Dn 7:15-27
Gospel: Lk 21:34-36
Pope's Prayer Intentions
November General Intention
Respect for Life. That medical researchers and legislators may have a deep respect for human life from its beginning to its natural conclusion.
November Mission Intention
Peace in Korea. That the spirit of reconciliation and peace may grow in the Korean Peninsula.
A Prayer in Autumn for Country Living
GOOD and generous Lord, You have once more brought the year full circle, through planting and growing and ripening to harvest time, and autumn.
We thank You for the sun and the wind, the rain and the dew, the minerals of the earth and all the plants that grow and all the beasts and birds of farm and field. We marvel at Your wonderful ways of bringing food from the earth for the good of us all.
Dear God, help us to use Your rich gifts as You want us to. Teach us to share them with our neighbors when they are in need. Make us see, in the marvelous succession of seasons and in the growth and ripening of our crops, the merciful, generous hand of Your divine providence.
Help us to realize, too, that if we keep Your commandments and live according to the inspirations of Your grace, we shall also reap a plentiful harvest in the autumn of our lifetime: a harvest that we will be able to enjoy for ever and ever, where no rust can destroy, nor blight spoil any least part of it.
Prayer courtesy of the National Catholic Rural Life Conference