Christ the KingThis coming Sunday we celebrate the Solemnity of Christ the King in the ordinary calendar of the Church.

In 1925, Pope Pius XI published an Encyclical entitled Quas Primus, which promulgated the Solemnity of Christ the King. The Feast was originally held on the last Sunday in October, at the ending of the liturgical year, and pointing towards the Kingship of Jesus Christ as we also recalled the Feasts of All Saints and All Souls.

In the current ordinary liturgical calendar, the Feast is moved to the last Sunday of the Liturgical year, reminding us that Jesus Christ is the crowning glory of our lives, and truly the king of creation.

In Quas Primus, Pope Pius writes:

And We remember saying that these manifold evils in the world were due to the fact that the majority of men had thrust Jesus Christ and his holy law out of their lives; that these had no place either in private affairs or in politics: and we said further, that as long as individuals and states refused to submit to the rule of our Savior, there would be no really hopeful prospect of a lasting peace among nations.

Men must look for the peace of Christ in the Kingdom of Christ; and that We promised to do as far as lay in Our power. In the Kingdom of Christ, that is, it seemed to Us that peace could not be more effectually restored nor fixed upon a firmer basis than through the restoration of the Empire of Our Lord. …

The foundation of this power and dignity of Our Lord is rightly indicated by Cyril of Alexandria. “Christ,” he says, “has dominion over all creatures, a dominion not seized by violence nor usurped, but his by essence and by nature.”

His kingship is founded upon the ineffable hypostatic union. From this it follows not only that Christ is to be adored by angels and men, but that to him as man angels and men are subject, and must recognize his empire; by reason of the hypostatic union Christ has power over all creatures.

But a thought that must give us even greater joy and consolation is this that Christ is our King by acquired, as well as by natural right, for he is our Redeemer. Would that they who forget what they have cost their Savior might recall the words: “You were not redeemed with corruptible things, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb unspotted and undefiled.”

We are no longer our own property, for Christ has purchased us “with a great price”; our very bodies are the “members of Christ.

While nations insult the beloved name of our Redeemer by suppressing all mention of it in their conferences and parliaments, we must all the more loudly proclaim his kingly dignity and power, all the more universally affirm his rights.

Jesus Christ is the King. We remember and proclaim that loudly to the world today, which is in such great need of the message of Jesus Christ, and the presence of those willing to give their lives in witness to Him.