Today is the glorious Solemnity of Christ the King. Here is my post from last year:
Please give Pope Pius XI’s Encyclical on the Feast of Christ the King a read. A very important Encyclical on the Social Kingship of Christ the King:
Let us pray that Christ will once again be King over Society and dare we say, acknowledged as King within the Church.
Viva Christo Rey! Our Lord is our King and He rules over His Kingdom, the Catholic Church, forever and ever!
A Blessed Feast of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King to all!
The following is a sermon from Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre for the Feast of Christ the King, given October 28, 1979:
My dear brethren,
In the magnificent encyclical Quas Primas of His Holiness Pope Pius XI, instituting the Feast of Christ the King, the Pope explains why Our Lord Jesus Christ is truly King, and he gives two particular and profound reasons. There are indeed many scriptural proofs. We have just read the Gospel in which Our Lord Jesus Christ proclaims Himself King. There are many passages from the Psalms and in the New Testament which express this same quality of Our Lord Jesus Christ as King. But His Holiness Pius XI takes care to deepen our knowledge of the reasons of this royalty.
The first reason is what the Church calls the “hypostatic union,” the union of the Divine Person of Our Lord with His human nature. Our Lord is King because He is God. Indeed, there are not two persons in Our Lord, there is not one Divine Person and one human person. There is only one person—the Divine Person who directly assumed a human soul and a human body without passing by the intermediary of a human person. Consequently, when we speak of Jesus Christ, we say the Person of Jesus Christ. Now, this person of Jesus Christ is a Divine Person. Certainly, Jesus Christ is both God and man since He assumed a human soul and a human body. Thus, the human soul and the human body of Our Lord Jesus Christ have become so intimately united to God that they cannot be separated. It is the Person of Our Lord Jesus Christ which is entirely Divine and by His Person, His body and soul are “deified.”
Thus, Our Lord Jesus Christ as He presented Himself along the route of Palestine and even as He presented Himself as an infant in Bethlehem, is King. Not only does He possess the character of this royalty but also the Church teaches us that by this union of God with human nature, with a soul and with a body, which He assumed, Our Lord Jesus Christ is essentially, by nature—Saviour, Priest, and King. He cannot but be the Saviour, for He alone may say that He is God. He alone is able to say that He is the Priest, the Pontiff—He who truly makes the link between heaven and earth—and also He alone is able to say that He is the King. He is not king according to the kingships of this world, that is to say, over a given territory and limited to the earth, to men. Indeed, Our Lord is King not only of the earth but also of heaven. This is the first profound reason of the royalty of Our Lord Jesus Christ and of this we must be convinced in order to see Our Lord as King, our personal King. Our Lord Jesus Christ is our King.
But He is King for another reason as well. Pope Pius XI explains well that Our Lord Jesus Christ is King by conquest. By what conquest?
It is because Our Lord Jesus Christ has conquered all by His Blood, by His Cross and by Calvary. Regnavit a ligno Deus, God has reigned by the wood, i. e., by the Cross, Our Lord has conquered all souls, whomsoever they may be, by right—a strict right. All souls since they are created by God, even if they live for only a moment here on earth, are by right subjects of Our Lord Jesus Christ because He conquered them by His Blood. He wants to save them. He desires to redeem them all by His Blood, His Divine Blood, in order to lead them to heaven. Yes, Our Lord, by His Precious Blood and by His Cross, is by right Our King. This is the very reason why in the early centuries after the peace of Constantine, when the Christians were officially able to present the Cross in their churches, in their chapels and in other places of worship, they usually represented Our Lord Jesus Christ as a crowned King; crowned with the crown of Kings. Christ is surely our King and He is King by His Cross.
We must then consider the principles of this nature of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King, of this conquest which Jesus has made upon our hearts and our souls by His death upon the Cross. Is Our Lord Jesus Christ daily in practice, in all of our actions, in all of our thoughts, truly our King? Pope Pius XI continues in his encyclical to describe the manner in which Our Lord must be our King. He must be the King of our intellects and of our thoughts because He is the Truth (Veritas). Jesus Christ is the Truth because He is God.
Is then Our Lord Jesus Christ truly King of our thoughts? Is it He who truly orients all of our thoughts, our reflections, our intellectual life, in the life of our Faith? Is it truly Our Lord Jesus Christ Who is the light of our intellects? Is He King of our wills?
He is the Law. If the Tablets of the Law were found in the Ark of the Covenant in the Old Testament, they represented precisely Our Lord Jesus Christ Who today is found in our tabernacles. But today with a tremendous superiority have. we the Law in our tabernacles, in our “arks of the covenant.” It is no longer the cold stones of the Old Testament but rather it is Our Lord Jesus Christ Himself Who is the Law. The Word of God is the Law by Whom all has been made, in Whom all things have been created. He is the Law not only of souls, of minds, of wills but He is the Law of all nature. All the laws which we discover in nature come from Our Lord Jesus Christ-come from the Word of God. It suffices to consider that all creatures follow with incomparable fidelity the laws of God, that they follow physical laws, chemical laws and all the laws of vegetative nature, of animal nature. These laws are followed impeccably.
And we, too, must follow in a diligent manner, in a free manner, the laws of God inscribed in our hearts. It is precisely due to our liberty that we must attach ourselves to this law which is the path of our happiness, the way to eternal life.
Man has turned away from this law.
Our Lord Jesus Christ must then be—must again become—the King of our wills and we must conform our wills to His law, to His Law of love, to His law of charity, to the Commandments which He has given us and which He Himself told us encompass all other Commandments: To love God and to love one’s neighbors. Are not these two in fact one and the same Commandment? It is He Who tells us so. Do we then truly conform our wills to the law of Our Lord Jesus Christ? Is Jesus Christ truly King of our wills?
Finally, Jesus has to be, as Pope Pius XI tells us, the King of our hearts. Are our hearts truly attached to Our Lord Jesus Christ? Are we conscious of the fact that Our Lord Jesus Christ is our ALL—Omnia in omnibus. Jesus Christ is all and in all things. It is He in ipso omnia constant as St. Paul says. In Him all is sustained, in Him we live, in Him we are and we act. It is this that St. Paul explains in his discourse to the Areopagite: In ipso vivimus, in ipso movemur, in ipso summus—He holds all in His hand.
We must then wonder what the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph must have thought. I believe that there is an admirable example for us. If we truly desire that Jesus Christ be our King we must try to imagine what Nazareth must have been. Jesus, Mary and Joseph. What must Mary have thought of Jesus? What must Joseph have thought of Jesus? It is incredible! It is a great mystery, an impenetrable mystery of the goodness, of the charity of God. To think that He permitted two creatures chosen by Him, to live with Him! For St. Joseph during thirty years, for the Blessed Virgin during thirty-three years, in the intimacy of Jesus, in the intimacy of He Who is God. It is He without whom neither Mary nor Joseph could speak, think, nor live. Mary bearing Jesus in her arms, bearing God in her arms! As the Gospel often says it was not she who was bearing Jesus but Jesus who was bearing her. For Jesus was much greater than she for He is God. Just think what must have been in the soul, will and heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary living with Jesus, seeing Him with His young companions, seeing Him working with St. Joseph.
We also have the joy to live with Our Lord.
Even under the delicate envelope of her body, the Blessed Virgin Mary adored the living God for she knew—she knew that the living God was in her home. She knew this through the Annunciation by the angel. And St. Joseph knew it perfectly as well.
We, too, know that we have the living Jesus in our tabernacles under the delicate Eucharistic species. Jesus is there! Not only do we have Him in our tabernacles, but moreover in a manner which I would say is almost more intimate than that of the Blessed Virgin Mary and of St. Joseph, when Our Lord gives Himself to us as our spiritual food.
Imagine, that truly in our bodies, in our hearts we bear Jesus—we bear God who sustains us, for without Him we would not be able to live nor exist nor say a single word nor even think a single thought. And we bear this God in the Holy Eucharist!
Let us ask Our Lord Jesus Christ when we receive Him in us that He be our King—that He may give us the thoughts of the Blessed Virgin Mary and of St. Joseph; that our wills be as theirs, submitted to His law; that He may grant us the affections of the hearts of the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph, these creatures whom He chose from all eternity to be His guardians, to be those with whom He was to live.
Ask them—ask Mary and Joseph—to help us live under the sweet Kingdom of Our Lord Jesus Christ. One day, we hope that we shall be in that Kingdom and that we shall see Him in His splendour and in His glory as we say so often when we recite the Angelus ut per passionem ijus et crucem ad resurrectionis gloriam perducamur—in order that by His Passion and Cross we may be brought to the glory of His Resurrection.
Indeed, we also must pass now by the Passion and Cross of Jesus upon the earth in order that one day we be able to join in the glory of His Resurrection, this glory which illuminates heaven, which is heaven, for God is heaven. Thus Our Lord Jesus Christ is heaven. In Him we will live in the grace of God by the grace of God. If we have Him already as our King here on earth, then we shall have Him as our King for all eternity.
Beseech the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph today, not only for us, but for our families, for all those who surround us, that they may come to the light of Our Lord Jesus Christ, that they recognize evil, and also for those who do not obey Him or who withdraw themselves from Him. Have pity on all these souls who do not know the King of Love and of Glory, in whom we have the happiness to believe, in whom we have the happiness to love. Beseech Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Blessed Virgin Mary, and St. Joseph to convert all these souls to Our Lord Jesus Christ the King.
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.