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The Solemnity of Christ the King

Christ the King: an invitation to look ahead

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Dear brothers and sisters, Fiat!

Feast of Christ the King: it is the last Sunday of the liturgical year. It sounds like an invitation to look at the last times of our earthly life.

The first reading (Ezekiel 34:11-17) opens and closes with these sentences: " I myself will search for my sheep and look after them (...) Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I judge between sheep and sheep, between rams and male goats.. In the Old Testament there is often an image of God as the shepherd of his flock, the people of Israel: a solicitous shepherd, who leads to good pastures, but also a rigorous shepherd, who scrutinizes those who stray from his guide

When Jesus came, He revealed that He was God, and He also referred the image of the Shepherd to Himself. Several times He said: "I am the good Shepherd", who gives His life for the sheep. And, like the divine Shepherd outlined by the ancient prophet, not even Jesus remains indifferent to those who turn away from Him. He, too, judges, He does not force anyone to follow Him. He observes that there are those who follow Him, and those who refuse to do so, going where they please, even though they are warned that far from Him they will find only desert.

As we know, judgment occurs as each person passes from this life to the other. Today's Gospel (Mt 25:31-46) summarizes it, so to speak, in a single collective moment: " When the Son of man comes in his glory, escorted by all the angels, then he will take his seat on his throne of glory. All nations will be assembled before him and he will separate people one from another as the shepherd separates sheep from goats. He will place the sheep on his right hand and the goats on his left. Then the King will say to those on his right hand, "Come, you whom my Father has blessed, take as your heritage the kingdom prepared for you since the foundation of the world.” The scene is great: the Son of Man (this is how Jesus designated himself) is the king, seated on the glorious throne, and has before him the incalculable number of men who have passed through this world, sifted one by one to recognize which ones deserve the passport to the kingdom prepared for them.It is said immediately afterwards who deserves it: "Come for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you made me welcome, lacking clothes and you clothed me, sick and you visited me, in prison and you came to see me… In truth I tell you, in so far as you did this to one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it to me.". Jesus then compares the others, those on His left. He says: " Go away from me…for I was hungry and you never gave me food, I was thirsty and you never gave me anything to drink, etc, etc. In truth I tell you, in so far as you neglected to do this to one of the least of these, you neglected to do it to me." 

These words find confirmation in those that were addressed years later to a 'fanatic' man on the road to Damascus: "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?". Saul, once he became the Apostle Paul, went hunting for Christians to be imprisoned; he was not looking for Jesus, but Jesus himself announced to him that what is done to his friends was done to Himself. In negative, but also in positive, as the words of the Gospel show, by listing examples of what can be done for the "least brothers", that is, for those in need. Those listed are only examples: the good we can presents an infinite casuistry, determined from time to time by the needs of those we meet and the possibilities of alleviating them. In short, what is important - and on which we will be judged - is love, following the example of the divine Master who has come to give his life out of love.

Today's feast invites us to look to the future, to contemplate the grandiose scene of the King in all His glory, with the whole of humanity before Him, summoned to manifest those who will have shown that they wanted to be His friend, loving those He loves. To look to the future, to settle now, so as to find ourselves, when the time comes, on the right side and to take part in the Kingdom of the Divine Will, that in this feast we celebrate its prelude.

On October 28, 1928 Jesus told Luisa that the Church is doing nothing other than honoring Jesus’ Humanity with those titles which, by right, are due to It; and when It has given Him all the honors that befit Him, It will move on to honor and to institute the Feast to the Kingdom of the Divine Will, by which Jesus’ Humanity was animated. The Church proceeds step by step, and now It institutes the Feast to Jesus’ Heart, now It consecrates the century, in all solemnity, to Christ the Redeemer, and now It moves on, with greater solemnity, to institute the Feast to Christ the King. Christ the King means that He must have His Kingdom, He must have peoples worthy of such a King. And who will ever be able to form for God this Kingdom if not the Divine Will? Then, yes, Jesus will be able to say: ‘I have my people - my Fiat has formed it for Me.’ Oh! if the leaders of the Church knew what Jesus manifested about the Divine Will, what He wants to do, Its great prodigies, His yearnings, His sorrowful heartbeats, His anguishing sighs, for Jesus wants His Will to reign, to make everyone happy, to restore the human family - they would feel that in this Feast of Christ the King is nothing other than the secret echo of His Heart which, echoing in them, without their knowing it, has them institute the Feast of Christ the King in order to call their attention and reflection. ‘Christ the King.... And His true people - where are they?’ And they would say: ‘Let us hasten to make His Divine Will known; let us let It reign, that we may give a people to Christ the King, whom we have called so. Otherwise, we have honored Him with words, but not with facts’.

don Marco
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