Solemnity of Christ the King (C)

November 20, 2022

INTRODUCTIONLECTORSHOMILIESVIDEO ARCHIVECOMMENTARYCHURCH FATHERSCATECHISMPAPAL HOMILIESHOMILY STARTERSFAITH SHARINGCHILDREN ACTIVITIESMUSIC

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Catechism References
Related to Sunday Readings

Solemnity of Christ the King (Year C)

TODAY’S SCRIPTURE READINGS

SOURCE: Michal E. Hunt (Agape Bible Study); (* indicates Scripture quoted or paraphrased in the citation)

HOMILETIC DIRECTORY

The Homiletic Directory suggests the following Catechism points and themes:

CCC 440, 446-451, 668-672, 783, 786, 908, 2105, 2628: Christ as Lord and King
CCC 678-679, 1001, 1038-1041: Christ as Judge
CCC 2816-2821: “Thy Kingdom Come”


Colossians 1:12-20

Solemnity of Christ the King (Year C)

Characteristics Common to Jesus’ Mysteries

517 Christ’s whole life is a mystery of redemption. Redemption comes to us above all through the blood of his cross,179 but this mystery is at work throughout Christ’s entire life:

– already in his Incarnation through which by becoming poor he enriches us with his poverty;180

– in his hidden life which by his submission atones for our disobedience;181

– in his word which purifies its hearers;182

– in his healings and exorcisms by which “he took our infirmities and bore our diseases”;183

– and in his Resurrection by which he justifies us.184

179 Cf. Eph 1:7; Col 1:13-14; 1 Pt 1:18-19.
180 Cf. 2 Cor 8:9.
181 Cf. Lk 2:51.
182 Cf. Jn 15:3.
183 Mt 8:17; cf. Isa 53:4.
184 Cf. Rom 4:25.


The Baptism of Infants

1250 Born with a fallen human nature and tainted by original sin, children also have need of the new birth in Baptism to be freed from the power of darkness and brought into the realm of the freedom of the children of God, to which all men are called.50 The sheer gratuitousness of the grace of salvation is particularly manifest in infant Baptism. The Church and the parents would deny a child the priceless grace of becoming a child of God were they not to confer Baptism shortly after birth.51

50 Cf. Council of Trent (1546): DS 1514; cf. Col 1:12-14.
51 Cf. CIC, can. 867; CCEO, cann. 681; 686,1.


And Forgive Us Our Trespasses…

2839 With bold confidence, we began praying to our Father. In begging him that his name be hallowed, we were in fact asking him that we ourselves might be always made more holy. But though we are clothed with the baptismal garment, we do not cease to sin, to turn away from God. Now, in this new petition, we return to him like the prodigal son and, like the tax collector, recognize that we are sinners before him.133 Our petition begins with a “confession” of our wretchedness and his mercy. Our hope is firm because, in his Son, “we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”134 We find the efficacious and undoubted sign of his forgiveness in the sacraments of his Church.135

133 Cf. Lk 15:11-32; 18:13.
134 Col 1:14; Eph 1:7.
135 Cf. Mt 26:28; 20:23.


Prayer of Praise

2641 “[Address] one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with all your heart.”124 Like the inspired writers of the New Testament, the first Christian communities read the Book of Psalms in a new way, singing in it the mystery of Christ. In the newness of the Spirit, they also composed hymns and canticles in the light of the unheard-of event that God accomplished in his Son: his Incarnation, his death which conquered death, his Resurrection, and Ascension to the right hand of the Father.125 Doxology, the praise of God, arises from this “marvelous work” of the whole economy of salvation.126

124 Eph 5:19; Col 3:16.
125 Cf. Phil 2:6-11; Col 1:15-20; Eph 5:14; 1 Tim 3:16; 6:15-16; 2 Tim 2:11-13.
126 Cf. Eph 1:3-14; Rom 16:25-27; Eph 3:20-21; Jude 24-25.


The Father Revealed by the Son

241 For this reason the apostles confess Jesus to be the Word: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God”; as “the image of the invisible God”; as the “radiance of the glory of God and the very stamp of his nature”.65

65 Jn 1:1; Col 1:15; Heb 1:3.


God Created an Ordered and Good World

299 Because God creates through wisdom, his creation is ordered: “You have arranged all things by measure and number and weight.”151 The universe, created in and by the eternal Word, the “image of the invisible God”, is destined for and addressed to man, himself created in the “image of God” and called to a personal relationship with God.152 Our human understanding, which shares in the light of the divine intellect, can understand what God tells us by means of his creation, though not without great effort and only in a spirit of humility and respect before the Creator and his work.153 Because creation comes forth from God’s goodness, it shares in that goodness – “And God saw that it was good. . . very good”154– for God willed creation as a gift addressed to man, an inheritance destined for and entrusted to him. On many occasions the Church has had to defend the goodness of creation, including that of the physical world.155

151 Wis 11:20.
152 Col 1:15, Gen 1:26.
153 Cf. Ps 19:2-5; Job 42:3.
154 Gen 1:4,10,12,18,21,31.
155 Cf. DS 286; 455-463; 800; 1333; 3002.


Man: The Image of God

1701 “Christ, . . . in the very revelation of the mystery of the Father and of his love, makes man fully manifest to himself and brings to light his exalted vocation.”2 It is in Christ, “the image of the invisible God,”3 that man has been created “in the image and likeness” of the Creator. It is in Christ, Redeemer and Savior, that the divine image, disfigured in man by the first sin, has been restored to its original beauty and ennobled by the grace of God.4

3 Col 1:15; cf. 2 Cor 4:4.
4 Cf. GS 22.


Christ “with All His Angels”

331 Christ is the center of the angelic world. They are his angels: “When the Son of man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him. . “191 They belong to him because they were created through and for him: “for in him all things were created in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or authorities – all things were created through him and for him.”192 They belong to him still more because he has made them messengers of his saving plan: “Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to serve, for the sake of those who are to obtain salvation?”193

191 Mt 25:31.
192 Col 1:16.
193 Heb 1:14.


Creation – Work of the Holy Trinity

291 “In the beginning was the Word. . . and the Word was God. . . all things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made.”129 The New Testament reveals that God created everything by the eternal Word, his beloved Son. In him “all things were created, in heaven and on earth.. . all things were created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.”130 The Church’s faith likewise confesses the creative action of the Holy Spirit, the “giver of life”, “the Creator Spirit” (Veni, Creator Spiritus), the “source of every good”.131

129 Jn 1:1-3.
130 Col 1:16-17.
131 Cf. Nicene Creed: DS 150; Hymn “Veni, Creator Spiritus”; Byzantine Troparion of Pentecost Vespers, “O heavenly King, Consoler”.


Mary’s Virginal Motherhood in God’s Plan

504 Jesus is conceived by the Holy Spirit in the Virgin Mary’s womb because he is the New Adam, who inaugurates the new creation: “The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven.”162 From his conception, Christ’s humanity is filled with the Holy Spirit, for God “gives him the Spirit without measure.”163 From “his fullness” as the head of redeemed humanity “we have all received, grace upon grace.”164

162 1 Cor 15:45,47.
163 Jn 3:34.
164 Jn 1:16; cf. Col 1:18.


Symbols of the Church

753 In Scripture, we find a host of interrelated images and figures through which Revelation speaks of the inexhaustible mystery of the Church. The images taken from the Old Testament are variations on a profound theme: the People of God. In the New Testament, all these images find a new center because Christ has become the head of this people, which henceforth is his Body.144 Around this center are grouped images taken “from the life of the shepherd or from cultivation of the land, from the art of building or from family life and marriage.”145

144 Cf. Eph 1:22; Col 1:18; LG 9.
145 LG 6.


“Christ is the Head of This Body”

792 Christ “is the head of the body, the Church.”225 He is the principle of creation and redemption. Raised to the Father’s glory, “in everything he [is] preeminent,”226 especially in the Church, through whom he extends his reign over all things.

235 Mk 2:19.
236 Cf. Mt 22:1-14; 25:1-13; 1 Cor 6:15-17; 2 Cor 11:2.


Luke 23:35-43

Solemnity of Christ the King (Year C)

Christ

440 Jesus accepted Peter’s profession of faith, which acknowledged him to be the Messiah, by announcing the imminent Passion of the Son of Man.40 He unveiled the authentic content of his messianic kingship both in the transcendent identity of the Son of Man “who came down from heaven”, and in his redemptive mission as the suffering Servant: “The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”41 Hence the true meaning of his kingship is revealed only when he is raised high on the cross.42 Only after his Resurrection will Peter be able to proclaim Jesus’ messianic kingship to the People of God: “Let all the house of Israel therefore know assuredly that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”43

40 Cf. Mt 16:16-23.
41 Jn 3:13; Mt 20:28; cf. Jn 6:62; Dan 7:13; Isa 53:10-12.
42 Cf. Jn 19:19-22; Lk 23:39-43.
43 Acts 2:36.


Jesus Hears Our Prayers

2616 Prayer to Jesus is answered by him already during his ministry, through signs that anticipate the power of his death and Resurrection: Jesus hears the prayer of faith, expressed in words (the leper, Jairus, the Canaanite woman, the good thief)84 or in silence (the bearers of the paralytic, the woman with a hemorrhage who touches his clothes, the tears and ointment of the sinful woman).85 The urgent request of the blind men, “Have mercy on us, Son of David” or “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” has-been renewed in the traditional prayer to Jesus known as the Jesus Prayer: “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner!”86 Healing infirmities or forgiving sins, Jesus always responds to a prayer offered in faith: “Your faith has made you well; go in peace.”

St. Augustine wonderfully summarizes the three dimensions of Jesus’ prayer: “He prays for us as our priest, prays in us as our Head, and is prayed to by us as our God. Therefore let us acknowledge our voice in him and his in us.”87

84 Cf. Mk 1:40-41; 5:36; 7:29; Cf. Lk 23:39-43.
85 Cf. Mk 25; 5:28; Lk 7:37-38.
86 Mt 9:27, Mk 10:48.
87 St. Augustine, En. in Ps. 85,1:PL 37,1081; cf. GILH 7.


Respect for Human Life

2266 The efforts of the state to curb the spread of behavior harmful to people’s rights and to the basic rules of civil society correspond to the requirement of safeguarding the common good. Legitimate public authority has the right and duty to inflict punishment proportionate to the gravity of the offense. Punishment has the primary aim of redressing the disorder introduced by the offense. When it is willingly accepted by the guilty party, it assumes the value of expiation. Punishment then, in addition to defending public order and protecting people’s safety, has a medicinal purpose: as far as possible, it must contribute to the correction of the guilty party.67

67 Cf. Lk 23:40-43.


The Particular Judgment

1021 Death puts an end to human life as the time open to either accepting or rejecting the divine grace manifested in Christ.592 The New Testament speaks of judgment primarily in its aspect of the final encounter with Christ in his second coming, but also repeatedly affirms that each will be rewarded immediately after death in accordance with his works and faith. The parable of the poor man Lazarus and the words of Christ on the cross to the good thief, as well as other New Testament texts speak of a final destiny of the soul–a destiny which can be different for some and for others.593

592 Cf. 2 Tim 1:9-10.
593 Cf. Lk 16:22; 23:43; Mt 16:26; 2 Cor 5:8; Phil 1:23; Heb 9:27; 12:23.

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