Pastor’s Corner for the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, Year C, by Rev. Fr. Nobert Munekani SJ
Less than ten years had passed since the end of World War I and most of the world was still revolving from the devastation of that “Great War.” It was an incredibly unsettled time. This turmoil was the context in which the rise of fascism took place in Europe. It was also in early 1925 that Benito Mussolini disbanded the Italian Parliament and became the dictator of that country. Adolf Hitler, while not yet solidly in control of Germany, was on the rise. It was in 1925 that he published his work, Mein Kampf. In many ways this rise of fascism was accompanied, and made possible, by an anti-Christian, anti-Church sentiment. So, this is the background to the feast we celebrate this Sunday.
This Sunday as a Church, we conclude our liturgical year and celebrate the Feast of Christ the King. The Feast of Christ the King, also called Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, festival celebrated in the Roman Catholic Church in honour of Jesus Christ as lord over all creation. This is feast is essentially a magnification of the Feast of the Ascension. It is celebrated on the last Sunday of the Liturgical year.
This Feast was established by Pope Pius XI in 1925 with his encyclical Quas primas, to respond to a world that was rejecting Christ and was being dominated by secularism. Pope Pius hoped that the establishment of this feast would bring about the following:
- That this annual celebration would assist the faithful to gain strength in their true King, Jesus Christ.
- That leaders and nations would recognise that they are bound to submit and give respect to Christ the King.
- That nations would see that the Church has the right to freedom, and immunity from the state. In these times when we are challenged in our faith and our ability to worship together, let us remember that Jesus Christ is Our King who reigns forever.
- That individuals should honour and recognise Jesus as their ‘Sovereign King’ and emulate his total gift of self, perfectly embodied on the Cross. In imitation of their thorn-crowned King, individuals can help bring love and relief to those who suffer and help to proclaim the Good News of the Reign of Christ in the world today.
For the Sick: Let remember to pray for the sick in our Parish especially Elizabeth Mooi and Abner Zama Qgolodashe.
Fr. Nobert Munekani SJ