Reflections - November 20, 2016

“Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom……….Amen, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”  Lk. 23:42-43.

There are moments in our lives that we should ask ourselves:  In whom should I put my trust?  For some it may be to follow whoever gives power, and for others it may be to follow whoever gives them control over others.  In the First Reading we find a king, King David, who exercised his royal power, but sometimes was not faithful to the Lord.

On this feast of Christ the King there is a great contrast with Jesus, the king of kings, the creator of heaven and earth.  He is the King of the truth, of loyalty, and of mercy.

Jesus testifies to His fidelity to the Father through sacrifice.  He was born in a manger to his mother, Mary, some poor peasants accompany him, and the angels, spiritual beings, sing Glory to God.

In this ministerial life simple Galileans accompanied him.  They were fisherman, simple and humble people “who heard the truth and became part of the truth that made them free”.

His message of salvation was also preached to the “lost sheep of Israel”.  These were publicans, prostitutes, thieves who claimed Him as King and changed their lives.

When “the time comes He serves until the end” with fidelity and washes the disciples’ feet, among them the traitor who would deliver Him.  By “loving until the end” He leaves us His Body and Blood in the “Bread of Life”.

Jesus, our King, left us a style of life:  to “love our Father, God, with all our heart, soul, and spirit and to love our neighbor as ourselves”.  There we find the sense of living with the truth, humility, and fidelity, His passion.

Our King had His throne where he reigned forever.  In the redeeming Cross He taught us all to be faithful to God’s plan and give life for all including our miseries.

“Death, where is thy sting”.

Jesus’ throne was also His confessional where He forgave and promised to share His Kingdom with a repentant thief.  “Today you will be with me in paradise”.

Today with the Feast of Christ the King concludes the ordinary time in the liturgical year.  Next Sunday we will begin Advent time, a time of preparation for the coming of the Son of God.

May this celebration of Christ the King help us renew ourselves inwardly to acknowledge, “in whom we put our trust”.  Not in a god of the dead, but in a god of the living who was faithful to the truth of God’s plan and who gives us hope to carry the daily cross with the hope of knowing that we will be in His Kingdom.