Sunday, October 23, 2016

Christ the King

Next Sunday, the last Sunday of October, on the Calendar for the Extraordinary Form of the Latin Rite, will be the Feast of The Kingship of Our Lord Jesus Christ.  I wrote about that Feast and the celebration of the Solemnity of Jesus Christ, King of the Universe in the Ordinary Form--which falls on Sunday, November 20 this year, for the National Catholic Register:

My husband and I attend Sunday Mass in both forms of the Roman Rite: the Ordinary Form in the vernacular and the Extraordinary Form in Latin. Because we have this opportunity, at least partially because of Pope Benedict XVI’s 2007 Summorum Pontificum, and mostly because of the generosity of several priests, we will celebrate the feast of Christ the King twice this fall—once before Election Day and once after. Thus, no matter who is elected President, Christ will be King.

1925: Pope Pius XI

On the Extraordinary Form calendar the Feast of the Kingship of Our Lord Jesus Christ is celebrated on the last Sunday of October. Pope Pius XI issued the encyclical “Quas Primas” on December 11, 1925 to establish the feast and provided this reason for its scheduling:
The last Sunday of October seemed the most convenient of all for this purpose, because it is at the end of the liturgical year, and thus the feast of the Kingship of Christ sets the crowning glory upon the mysteries of the life of Christ already commemorated during the year, and, before celebrating the triumph of all the Saints, we proclaim and extol the glory of him who triumphs in all the Saints and in all the Elect.
The propers of the Mass (Introit, Collect, Epistle, Gradual, Alleluia, Gospel, Offertory, Secret, Communion Verse, and Post Communion prayer) all emphasize what Pope Pius XI stated as truths about Jesus Christ’s Kingship. He reigns as the maker and enforcer of Law; His Kingdom, as he told Pilate, is not of this world: it is “spiritual and concerned with spiritual things”; nevertheless, He is King of all the nations on earth, whether their citizens are Catholic or not, baptized or not, and He reigns as the King of peace.

Please read the rest there.

Image credit. (Christ Pantocrator (“ruler over all”) from the Hagia Sophia in Instanbul)

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