Jesus Christ: King of Kings!

11-24-2019From Fr. John's DeskFr. John Barbella

It was wonderful to see so many people at last week’s celebration of our parish’s 160th anniversary. There was a nice crowd at the 11am Mass – who were treated to the return of our pipe organ. We were also honored by the presence of many religious sisters and three priests who are natives of our parish.

Mercy Hall was packed after Mass with people enjoying a nice continental breakfast. Some artifacts and photos from our parish archives were on display, attracting a great deal of attention. Best of all was seeing so many people – some of whom hadn’t seen each other for some time – having a good time together. Thanks to everyone who made it happen!

Today, Catholics around the world are celebrating the Solemn Feast of Jesus Christ, the King. It is a day to consider the place that Jesus has in our lives. While we often think of Jesus as our Savior and Lord, today’s feast reminds us that He is also our King.

The Bible, in the Book of Revelation, calls Jesus the “King of Kings. “ This means that everyone, including the ‘kings’ of this world, are ultimately accountable to Him. As we say in the Creed – Sunday after Sunday- “His kingdom will have no end.”

Our observance of Christ the King Sunday – as this Feast is commonly called – askes us to consider how well we really allow Jesus to be our King. Many of the kings who ruled the world when Jesus lived His human life often misused their power. Thankfully, Jesus is nothing like them! Jesus has all the power in the universe – but He uses it for good, and asks us to do the same. Indeed, one of the ‘laws’ Jesus makes for us is that we practice charity and show mercy to others.

To be sure, our King commands other things, too – things like going to Church on Sunday, practicing honesty and purity, and respecting the lives and property of our neighbors. These are, of course, summed up in the Ten Commandments – and we do well on this Christ the King Sunday to reflect on how well we live by them.

With Advent starting next Sunday, I will start speaking about making a good Confession before Christmas. Thinking about how well we live by our King’s Commandments is a good way to start preparing for our Advent Confession. So is thinking about what we can do to show that Jesus Christ is truly our King.

I hope everyone has a good Thanksgiving this Thursday. I will be at my sister Natalie’s – with a good deal of my family. I hope everyone has a chance to enjoy a good Thanksgiving with the people they love.

Please remember that Hail Mary for me today and every day. I take great pleasure in praying for all of you – and in knowing I can rely upon your prayers. Let’s also pray for all those in need and for peace in our troubled world.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Fr. John

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