Feast of Christ the King
God’s kingdom is not one of power, of imposed authority or domination. It is a kingdom where the chief goal is to bring all people to fullness of life and humanity. It is the kingdom of the Beatitudes, of the great reversal of worldly values where those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted; where those who are first will be last, and those who are last will be first; where those sitting at the table of the eternal banquet will be welcomed from all the ends of the earth and include people we would least expect – people who are poor, or lame, or blind – those who seemingly have had nothing to offer the world. On this feast of Christ the King we might reflect on the barriers that sometimes prevent us from opening our hearts to those who come to our lands in need of our protection and care, who bring with them great gifts of resilience and hope and richness of languages and cultures. They may appear to have nothing to offer, but being hospitable to them can change our lives and lead us to the welcome that truly matters: the welcome into the hospitality of God’s reign that lasts forever.
Fr. Sacha Bermudez-Goldman, SJ
Thy kingdom come!
Reflect on the nature of the kingdom described by Jesus. Think of the implications of such a world order. Compare it to the political and religious values we see among those in our own country with the power to rule. What can you do to bring about the reign of God?
Pilate said to Jesus,
“Are you the King of the Jews?”
Jesus answered, “Do you say this on your own
or have others told you about me?”
Pilate answered, “I am not a Jew, am I?
Your own nation and the chief priests handed you over to me.
What have you done?”
Jesus answered, “My kingdom does not belong to this world.”
Among us, who is above must be in service of the others. This doesn’t mean we have to wash each other’s feet every day, but we must help one another.
The kingdom is not an exclusive, well-trimmed suburb with snobbish rules about who can live there. No, it is for a larger, homelier, less self-conscious caste of people who understand they are sinners because they have experienced the yaw and pitch of moral struggle.
The gospel is realistic, not idealistic. It does not bring new teaching; it brings a new reality.
Justice is what love looks like in public.
The Kingdom of God will always remain transcendent, but it appears as a judgement on a given form of society and as a norm for a coming one.
The Kingdom of God is not a matter of getting individuals to heaven, but of transforming the life on earth into the harmony of heaven.
What makes the temptation of power so seemingly irresistible? Maybe it is that power offers an easy substitute for the hard task of love. It seems easier to be God than to love God, easier to control people than to love people, easier to own life than to love life.
God’s Kingdom is a new society that Jesus wants to create in this world- within human history. But right now.
The kingdom of God is available to you in the here and the now. But the question is whether you are available to the kingdom.
When we see social relationships controlled everywhere by the principles which Jesus illustrated in life — trust, love, mercy, and altruism — then we shall know that the kingdom of God is here.
Martin Luther King, Jr.