HOMILY: Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe (A) by Rev. Fr. Allen Baclor Abadines

Christ the king final

 

GOSPEL REFLECTION: Solemnity of Christ the King (A)
by Rev. Fr. Allen Baclor Abadines
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GOSPEL: Matthew 25:31-46

Jesus said to his disciples: “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the Angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left.
“Then the King will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’
“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you? And the King will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did it to me.’
“Then he will say to those at his left hand, ‘You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’
“Then they also answer, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you? Then he will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
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REFLECTION:

Story: A well-known speaker started off his seminar by holding up a $20. bill. In the room of 200, he asked, “Who would like this $20. bill? Hands started going up.
He said, “I am going to give this $20. to one of you but first, let me do this.” He proceeded to crumple the dollar bill up. He then asked, “Who still wants it?” Still, the hands were up in the air. “Well, ” he replied, “What if I do this?” And he dropped it on the ground and started to grind it into the floor with his shoe. He picked it up, now all crumpled and dirty. “Now who still wants it?” Still, the hands went into the air. And he said to them, “My friends, you have all learned a very valuable lesson. No matter what I did to the money you still wanted it. Why? Because it did not decrease in value! It was still worth $20. Likewise, Many times in our lives, we are dropped, crumpled, and ground into the dirt by the decisions we make and the circumstances that come our way. We feel as though we are worthless. But no matter what has happened or what will happen, you will never lose your value – you are special – you are a CHILD OF GOD.
Yes, this is our identity and our worth – that we are children of God. A God who is King. In the “Lord’s Prayer,” we say “Thy Kingdom come!” And as children of God, He welcomes us to enter His Kingdom. “Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world…” A Kingdom that is not in a palace or royalty but it is in the human heart.
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Today, we celebrate Christ the King.Why do we celebrate a feast that is inviting us to reflect on the image of Jesus as King? It is not easy for us to picture Jesus as King. During Jesus’ trial,Pilate asked Jesus “Are you a King?” To which Jesus replied, “I am a King, and I came into the world to bear witness to the truth.” The notion of Jesus as King is not that easy to reconcile with the kind of royalty we have in mind.For a start, Jesus was born in a stable. He was the son of a carpenter.Unlike, Caesar, Jesus did not have soldiers who were armed to protect him…no golden crown, no exquisite clothing, no palace, no throne or servants to wait on him. If ever his throne was the cross, his crown was thorns , his scepter was the lance that pierced his side.Christ Kingship therefore is far different from our secular understanding of royalty. In his trial he made it clear, “My Kingdom does not belong to this world- If my Kingdom did belong to this world, my attendants would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my Kingdom is not here.” (John 18:36) What is this Kingdom that Jesus was talking about? How then do we look at the Kingship of Jesus? Jesus’ Kingship is sustained by a power that does not manipulate others but a power of love. Christ did not come to establish a political sovereignty. We have here a King who is not hungry for worldly power and fame but a King who loves the poor and the marginalized. A King who cares for the weak and the downtrodden.A king who did not come to be served but to serve. Christ Kingship is not of this world, for He is a King who rules not from a royal throne in glory but from service of the cross. It is a Kingdom of truth, justice, peace, service , compassion and love.
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Yes, Jesus is our King and our challenge is for us to imitate in our lives the way our King lived. Like Jesus our King, we are called to serve not to be served. To love as Jesus loved. To be compassionate especially to the poor, the oppressed , and the marginalized. And to give ourselves totally to the Father by loving our neighbor as ourselves.In the Gospel, Jesus said “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me. I was naked and you gave me clothing. I was sick and you took care of me. I was in prison and you visited me…For truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did it to me.” William Barclay puts it beautifully, “Love always involves responsibility, and love always involves sacrifice. And we do not really love Christ unless we are prepared to face His task and to take up His Cross.”
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As we celebrate the Solemnity of Christ the King, there is a sense of gratitude in my heart. For I feel loved despite my weaknesses and shortcomings. I came to know my worth , I am a child of God. Dieter F. Uchtdorf said, “Though we are incomplete, God loves us completely. Though we are imperfect, He loves us perfectly. Though we may feel lost and without compass, God’s love encompasses us completely…He loves everyone of us, even those who are flawed, rejected, awkward, sorrowful or broken.”
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Let Christ reign in our hearts by being faithful to His will. Let us make his love known by our example and deeds. Let us help build his Kingdom here on earth knowing fully that Christ Kingship has at its heart, not power and wealth but compassion, service, selflessness and love. Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat! (Christ conquers, Christ reigns, Christ commands!)
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Homily: The Solemnity of our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe (C) by Pater Allen Baclor Abadines

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GOSPEL REFLECTION: The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe (Year C)
by Rev. Fr. Allen Baclor Abadines
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READINGS:

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FIRST READING: 2 Samuel 5:1-3

In those days, all the tribes of Israel came to David in Hebron and said:
“Here we are, your bone and your flesh.
In days past, when Saul was our king,
it was you who led the Israelites out and brought them back.
And the LORD said to you,
‘You shall shepherd my people Israel
and shall be commander of Israel.’”
When all the elders of Israel came to David in Hebron,
King David made an agreement with them there before the LORD,
and they anointed him king of Israel.
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The Word Of The Lord/ Thanks Be To God.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM: PSALM 122

Response: Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.
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I rejoiced because they said to me,
“We will go up to the house of the LORD.”
And now we have set foot
within your gates, O Jerusalem.
R/ Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.
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Jerusalem, built as a city
with compact unity.
To it the tribes go up,
the tribes of the LORD.
R/ Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.
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According to the decree for Israel,
to give thanks to the name of the LORD.
In it are set up judgment seats,
seats for the house of David.
R/ Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.
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SECOND READING: COLOSSIANS 1:12-20

Brothers and sisters:
Let us give thanks to the Father,
who has made you fit to share
in the inheritance of the holy ones in light.
He delivered us from the power of darkness
and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son,
in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

He is the image of the invisible God,
the firstborn of all creation.
For in him were created all things in heaven and on earth,
the visible and the invisible,
whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers;
all things were created through him and for him.
He is before all things,
and in him, all things hold together.
He is the head of the body, the church.
He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead,
that in all things he himself might be preeminent.
For in him all the fullness was pleased to dwell,
and through him to reconcile all things for him,
making peace by the blood of his cross
through him, whether those on earth or those in heaven.
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The Word Of The Lord/ Thanks Be To God.

GOSPEL ACCLAMATION
Alleluia. Alleluia.
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!
Blessed is the kingdom of our father David that is to come!
R. Alleluia. Alleluia.
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GOSPEL: Luke 23:35-43

The rulers sneered at Jesus and said,
“He saved others, let him save himself
if he is the chosen one, the Christ of God.”
Even the soldiers jeered at him.
As they approached to offer him wine they called out,
“If you are King of the Jews, save yourself.”
Above him, there was an inscription that read,
“This is the King of the Jews.”

Now one of the criminals hanging there reviled Jesus, saying,
“Are you not the Christ?
Save yourself and us.”
The other, however, rebuking him, said in reply,
“Have you no fear of God,
for you are subject to the same condemnation?
And indeed, we have been condemned justly,
for the sentence we received corresponds to our crimes,
but this man has done nothing criminal.”
Then he said,
“Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”
He replied to him,
“Amen, I say to you,
today you will be with me in Paradise.”
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The Gospel Of The Lord/ Praise To You Lord Jesus Christ.
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REFLECTION:

The Liturgical Year of Cycle C now comes to a conclusion as we honor our Lord Jesus, King of the Universe. This is a good preparation as we embark on a new spiritual journey in the coming year. Thus, It is but fitting that we reflect on the Kingship as well as the Kingdom of our Lord as we end this year’s Liturgical Calendar.

What does it mean when we say: “Jesus is King of the universe?” Not only that but to us “Jesus is King of kings and Lord of lords.”
Does it mean power? Authority?

Yes, Jesus is King, but not as the world defines him to be. For the world understands a king as someone who lord over people. He is wealthy and powerful with an army and a kingdom. He is feared and respected by his people. His words have authority. And He is willing to use anything and everything to the extent of waging wars against enemies to protect his Kingdom. But none of these is the image of Jesus as King. In fact, when he was asked by Pilate, “Are you the king of the Jews?” Jesus tried to reject the title. Because that is not the kind of kingship Jesus has in mind. Jesus’ notion of what kingship is all about is diametrically opposed to the world’s understanding of what a leader should be. For our Lord Jesus, real kingship is found in humble service. Yes, Jesus’ kingship is described in one word i.e. Servanthood. Mark 9:35 ” And sitting down, He called the twelve and said to them, ‘If anyone wants to be first, he shall be last of all, and servant of all.'”

In preaching the Kingdom of God, Jesus’ words and deeds go hand in hand. Not only that he preached the Kingdom by words but more so by example. He is the Son of God yet at the Last Supper, he humbly washed the feet of the disciples. He healed the sick. He touched the lepers. He was not afraid to mingle with sinners and tax collectors and be associated with them. He forgave sinners. And fed the people not only with real bread but by the words of God that nourished their souls. And nowhere is Jesus’ Kingship more obvious than when he is hanging on the Cross. We see our Lord that despite the excruciating pain and agony yet full of love and forgiveness. The celebration of Christ the King, therefore, is a recognition of the power of a humble service, forgiveness, and love.

The celebration of Christ is not just a devotion. We do not just recognize and admire Jesus as our King. Its real message lies in the fact that we are challenged in our lives to be like him. To imitate Jesus in our lives his service, forgiveness, and love. God’s love is all-encompassing, It does not discriminate. It is always personal. In short, we should, therefore, reflect through our actions that indeed Christ reigns in our hearts. And that we become the image of Christ to others.
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STORY (Author Unknown)

One night, at 11:30 PM, an older African-American woman was standing on the side of an Alabama highway trying to endure a lashing rainstorm. Her car had broken down and she desperately needed a ride. Soaking wet, she decided to flag down the next car.

A young white man stopped to help her – generally unheard of in those conflict-filled 1960s. The man took her to safety, helped her get assistance and put her into a taxicab. She seemed to be in a big hurry! She wrote down his address, thanked him and drove away.

Seven days went by and a knock came on the man’s door. To his surprise, a giant console color TV was delivered to his home. A special note was attached. It read:

“Thank you so much for assisting me on the highway the other night. The rain drenched not only my clothes but also my spirits. Then you came along. Because of you, I was able to make it to my dying husband’s bedside just before he passed away. God bless you for helping me and unselfishly serving others.”

Sincerely,
Mrs. Nat King Cole
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A recognition that Christ indeed is king to us is to take its message seriously in our lives. Jesus is King of our lives. Which means that we submit our lives totally to Jesus as our King. We allow Jesus to reign in our homes, in our workplaces, in our community, and in our hearts. Galatians 2: 20 “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.”