Christ, King of the Universe is the closing reading of a liturgical year. Next week starts Advent, which begins the next calendar year. Superimpose the two, just for a moment. The King is a mature figure, and the feast clearly points to the return of Christ. Advent, is the awaiting of the Nativity of Christ, but also points towards Christ the King. One a conclusion, the other a beginning; yet both address the eternal. One can’t separate the Christ that majestically returns from the one that humbly enters creation. They are the same. The Christ of Christ the King might hint towards judgement, and that judgement gives hint of the reason for Advent. Both these days also speak to history. The Nativity was an historical event, the day the solemnity of Christ the King was instituted also was a reaction to history. 1929 was an era of changes for the Christendom of Europe. Monarchies were collapsing, and dictators were filling the void. The religious day was counterpoint to the political turmoil, a flock’s reminder of who the true King is. Read that reading where Pontius Pilot questions Christs Kingship. Politics are there too, and a monumental change is set into motion.
Did I say anything new? I don’t think so, I am just pondering this day. With one thought a year ends and a new one begins. In another thought there is a link of unbroken continuity. Does one day point towards the LORDS judgement, and the other HIS mercy? Does one gain importance over the other, does the feast of the King emphasize the importance of the Advent as a time of preparation? Does today serve as a reminder not only of that second coming of Christ, but does it also contrast two natures of the same Christ; judgement and forgiveness? Shouldn’t one also be reminded of the lessons of history, our history? The battles of yesterday and today, there is a political context to this day after all.
This is one of those days that raises more questions that it does to provide answers a day reminiscent of the same parables “Christ the King” preached. This day can’t be the conclusion of something eternal, yet one day hints towards an end and the other a beginning. Paradoxically, Christ has neither beginning nor end. How can we await the return of a God that never abandoned us? Perhaps in this day lies the meaning of the word majesty? Ours is a majestic King, a mysterious King, a King of justice, and of mercy. A King of wisdom and understanding.