Christ is King of All Creation
We have already come to the final Sunday of the Liturgical Year with the celebration of the Solemnity of Christ the King. Next Sunday we shall enter Advent. But what do we mean when we say Christ is King? Christ is not just King of Heaven or King of Christians. His sovereignty is over every single aspect of creation, both in the supernatural and in the natural order because He is God and He is the Creator who holds all things in being. He said, “My Kingdom is not of this world” (John 18:36) but in saying this, Our Lord was referring to the world of sin over which Satan exercises influence, and only because God permits it. But Satan does not own it – God does, and so Christ’s Kingship extends over everything, all peoples and all nations.
This Feast is a relatively new one, instituted by Pope Pius XI in 1925 because he became alarmed that nations were claiming that JESUS Christ and His law had “no place in private affairs or politics.” The Church and State may be distinct, but they should collaborate to bring about Christ’s reign on earth. As Pope Benedict XVI said in Westminster Hall in 2010, “Religion … is not a problem for legislators to solve, but a vital contributor to the national conversation.” For instance, the State does not have a right to pass laws which cause harm to the common good and which corrupt the morals of the population, or which denies the rights of Christ and the Catholic Church. The State has no right to prevent the public worship of the Church, because God has the right to be worshipped by every one of us. When the State forbids this God is offended. So it is right that the Bishops and many Catholics have protested to the government against this. If it is absolutely necessary for the temporary cessation of public worship, this is for the Church to decide – not the State. The Church can never be subject to the State because it uncrowns Christ. Although we are obeying the law in this, we do so under duress.
Pope Pius XI when he instituted this Feast said, “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.”
Our battle song can be the words of the Laudes Regiae (The Royal Praises) “Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat!” (Christ conquers, Christ reigns, Christ commands!).
Fr Paul Gillham, IC