We celebrate the last Sunday of the liturgical year called the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. This goal was pointed out to us on the first Sunday of Advent, and today we reached it.
In 325, the First Ecumenical Council was held in the city of Nicaea in Asia Minor. On that occasion, the divinity of Christ was defined against the creeds of Arius: “Christ is God, light of light, true God of true God”. 1600 years later, in 1925, Pius XI proclaimed the best way to deal with injustice: to recognize the Kingship of Christ. In fact, he wrote: “Festivals are more effective than any document of the Church, because they reach not only the spirit, but also the heart, by attracting the attention of all, not just once, but throughout the year” (Encyclopedia Quas relativesDecember 11, 1925).
The original date of the feast of Christ the King was All Saints Sunday, but, with the new Reformation of 1969, it was moved to the last Sunday of the liturgical year. By this, it is clear that the goal of our earthly pilgrimage is Jesus Christ, the King. Every three years the biblical texts change so that we can fully understand the image of Jesus.
Text: (Mt. 25, 31-46)
“When the Son of Man returns in his glory and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. All nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate them one from another as a shepherd separates his sheep from his goats. He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. Then the king will say to those on the right: “Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world, for I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink; I was a pilgrim and you welcomed me; Naked you clothed me; I was sick and you visited me; Prisoner and you came to me. The righteous will ask him: “Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you and give you drink when you were thirsty? When did we see you as a pilgrim and welcome you naked and clothed? When did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?” The king will answer: “Truly I say to you, every time you did it to one of these little brothers of mine, you did it to me.” Then he will say to those on his left: “Depart from me, you accursed! Go to the eternal fire reserved for the devil and his angels. I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat; I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink; I was a pilgrim and you did not welcome me.” ; naked you did not clothe me; sick and in prison you did not visit me. Then, they will ask him: “Lord, when did we find you hungry, thirsty, a stranger, naked, sick or in prison and did not help you?” He will answer them: “Indeed I I tell you, whenever you fail to do it to one of the least of these, you fail to do it to me. These will go into eternal punishment, and the righteous into eternal life” (Matthew 25, 31-46)..
The last step
Today we call the last Sunday of the liturgical year Feast of our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. This goal was pointed out to us on the first Sunday of Advent, and today we reached it. Because the liturgical year represents our lives in iconography, this experience first teaches us, then reminds us that we are on the way to meet Jesus, the bridegroom who will come as King and Lord of life and history. We refer to His second coming: the first, when He came as a humble babe, laid in a manger (Luke 2:7); The second is when He returns in His glory at the end of time. This visit is celebrated today liturgically. However, there is yet another transition that we experience today, in which Jesus presents us with the grace of his sacraments and each of the “little ones” of the Gospel – “Verily I say unto you, Except ye become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.“…(Mount 18.2), that is, we are called to recognize Jesus in the person of our brothers and sisters, to negotiate the acquired talents and to accept our responsibilities every day. – Along this path, liturgy offers us a school of life to recognize God, to be present in daily life, and to prepare us for His final return.
Integrations for life
“Come ye blessed…depart from me ye cursed. Go to the eternal fire reserved for the devil and his angels”. Blessing and cursing are not the end, but the “confirmation” of the king who does nothing but “do the math”, what each person did, what he did, how much he cared for his brother (Cf. Gn 4; LC 16,19-31 – Rich)
At the beginning of the Gospel, the Evangelist Matthew (1.23) he writes: “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and his name shall be Immanuel, which means “God with us.””; And, at the end of the Gospel: “Behold, I will be with you always, even to the end of the world” (Mount 28,20) In this context, the “final judgment” that the liturgy makes us think of must be read and understood. Jesus, Immanuel, God is with us, truly “with us” to the end of the world. He is with us… but where is he? How can we recognize its presence and action in our lives? To find him we must follow in Jesus’ footsteps and cultivate his passions, which often do not coincide with our own. How can we forget that Jesus told his disciples that death awaited him on the cross? Peter objected to his words, but Jesus answered: “Get away from me, Satan! You are a disgrace to me; Your thoughts are not of God, but of men” (Mount 16,22; Cf. is 55.8)
We must always remember that”We are in the world, but we are not of the world. (Cf. John 17:14) and because it is so easy to deviate from the right path – “You ran well. So who cut off your feet?…?” (Cf. Gal 5:7) – what”It is important to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus to avoid straying off the path. (Cf. Heb 12:2) He is with us. Therefore, our lives are not guided by chaos, but by Life and a Being who shows us the path.
The party that guides us
The liturgical year is a symbol of our life’s journey: it has a beginning and an end as we enter through the narrow door of “” to meet the Lord Jesus, King and Lord in the Kingdom of Heaven.Sister’s death “(St. Francis). Well, at the beginning of the liturgical year (the first Sunday of Advent), we showed in advance, towards which goal we should direct our steps. It is from the point of view of an exam, we know the questions and the questions a year in advance! Jesus, the way), what with thoughts to follow (Jesus, truth), and which faith should inspire us (Jesus, life – Cf. John 14:6)
It all depends on love
Much strikes us today about liturgical texts The final exam will be on Love, in the concreteness of life, based on our simplest and most common actions: “I was hungry, thirsty …”. Therefore, these are not heroic gestures, not strange to everyday life, not extraordinary gestures. The most beautiful thing that emerges from the Gospels is that Jesus is just “God is with us till the end of the world“, but “God in us”, beginning with the little ones, identifies himself with the most needy, with the little ones of the Gospel, with all the persecuted (Cf. Acts 9:4: “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”) Ultimately, every gesture of love is a gesture made “with Jesus” in his company; “Like Jesus,” as we learn from the Gospel; But “for Jesus”, because every time we make a gesture of love, we do it “for him”.
Love in everyday life
It strikes us that there is nothing religious or sacred about Jesus’ “six” gestures in the Gospels, according to our way of thinking. All of them seem to be “lay” gestures on the street, at home, wherever and whenever needed; In fact, “Before and after the church nothing is unclean, because all truth is the great church of God: nothing is unclean, but everything is “holy”, because everything is in the work of Jesus” (Luigi Giusani).
According to another text in Matthew, this is the worship we give to God: “Therefore, if you are going to offer your gift before the altar, remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and first be reconciled to your brother; Only then come and make your offer“. (Cf. Mt 5, 23-24; Ash Wednesday: 58.9; Gal 2:12: This is the fasting that I desire: to set free the oppressed…) After all, the worship offered before the altar is very little if it is not preceded by a worship of love for others.
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