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Catholic Caucus: Sunday Mass Readings, 11-25-12, SOL, Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe
USCCB.org/RNAB ^ | 11-25-12 | Revised New American Bible

Posted on 11/24/2012 9:23:17 PM PST by Salvation

November 25, 2012

The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe

Reading 1 Dn 7:13-14

As the visions during the night continued, I saw
one like a Son of man coming,
on the clouds of heaven;
when he reached the Ancient One
and was presented before him,
the one like a Son of man received dominion, glory, and kingship;
all peoples, nations, and languages serve him.
His dominion is an everlasting dominion
that shall not be taken away,
his kingship shall not be destroyed.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 93:1, 1-2, 5

R. (1a) The LORD is king; he is robed in majesty.
The LORD is king, in splendor robed;
robed is the LORD and girt about with strength.
R. The LORD is king; he is robed in majesty.
And he has made the world firm,
not to be moved.
Your throne stands firm from of old;
from everlasting you are, O LORD.
R. The LORD is king; he is robed in majesty.
Your decrees are worthy of trust indeed;
holiness befits your house,
O LORD, for length of days.
R. The LORD is king; he is robed in majesty.

Reading 2 Rv 1:5-8

Jesus Christ is the faithful witness,
the firstborn of the dead and ruler of the kings of the earth.
To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood,
who has made us into a kingdom, priests for his God and Father,
to him be glory and power forever and ever. Amen.

Behold, he is coming amid the clouds,
and every eye will see him,
even those who pierced him.
All the peoples of the earth will lament him.
Yes. Amen.

"I am the Alpha and the Omega, " says the Lord God,
"the one who is and who was and who is to come, the almighty."

Gospel Jn 18:33b-37

Pilate said to Jesus,
"Are you the King of the Jews?"
Jesus answered, "Do you say this on your own
or have others told you about me?"
Pilate answered, "I am not a Jew, am I?
Your own nation and the chief priests handed you over to me.
What have you done?"
Jesus answered, "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."
So Pilate said to him, "Then you are a king?"
Jesus answered, "You say I am a king.
For this I was born and for this I came into the world,
to testify to the truth.
Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice."


TOPICS: Catholic; General Discusssion; Prayer; Worship
KEYWORDS: catholic; christtheking; ordinarytime; prayer
For your reading, reflection, faith-sharing, comments, questions, discussion.

1 posted on 11/24/2012 9:23:24 PM PST by Salvation
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To: Salvation

Last Sunday of the liturgical year!

Next week is the first Sunday of Advent.


2 posted on 11/24/2012 9:27:06 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: nickcarraway; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ArrogantBustard; Catholicguy; RobbyS; marshmallow; ...
Alleluia Ping!
 
If you aren’t on this ping list NOW and would like to be, 
please Freepmail me.

3 posted on 11/24/2012 9:27:17 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

From: Daniel 7:13-14

Daniel’s Vision (Continuation)


[13] I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came
one like a son of man, and he came to the Ancient of Days and was presented
before him. [14] And to him was given dominion and glory and kingdom, that all
peoples, nations, and languages should serve him; his dominion is an everlas-
ting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be
destroyed.

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

7:9-14. Divine judgment is passed on the kingdoms in this scene. God is depic-
ted as being seated on a throne in heaven, his glory flashing out and angels all
around. Judgment is about to take place, and it will be followed by execution of
the sentence. The books (v. 10) contain all the actions of men (cf. Jer 17:1; Mal
3:16; Ps 56:8; Rev 20:12). The seer is shown history past (not laid out accor-
ding to chronology: all the empires are included in one glance), and he notes
that a more severe sentence is passed on the blasphemous horn than on the
other beasts. They had their lives extended (v. 12), that is, their deprivation of
power did not spell the end; but the little horn is destroyed forthwith. “Following
in the steps of the prophets and John the Baptist, Jesus announced the judg-
ment of the Last Day in his preaching (cf. Dan 7:10; Joel 3-4; Mal 3:19; Mt 3:7-
42)” (”Catechism of the Catholic Church”, 678).

The one “like a son of man” who comes with the clouds of heaven and who, after
the judgment, is given everlasting dominion over all the earth, is the very antithe-
sis of the beasts. He has not risen from a turbulent sea like them; there is no-
thing ferocious about him. Rather, he has been raised up by God (he comes with
the clouds of heaven) and he shares the human condition. The dignity of all man-
kind is restored through this son of man’s triumph over the beasts. This figure,
as we will discover later, stands for ‘the people of the saints of the Most High’ (7:
27), that is, faithful Israel. However, he is also an individual (just as the winged li-
on was an individual, and the little horn), and insofar as he is given a kingdom,
he is a king. What we have here is an individual who represents the people. In
Jewish circles around the time of Christ, this “son of man” was interpreted as
being the Messiah, a real person (cf. “Book of the Parables of Enoch”); but it
was a title that became linked to the sufferings of the Messiah and to his resur-
rection from the dead only when Jesus Christ applied it to himself in the Gospel.
“Jesus accepted Peter’s profession of faith, which acknowledged him to be the
Messiah, by announcing the imminent Passion of the Son of Man (cf. Mt 16:23).
He unveiled the authentic content of his messianic kingship both in the transcen-
dent identity of the Son of Man ‘who came down from heaven’ (Jn 3:13; cf. Jn 6:
62; Dan 7:13), 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’ (Mt 20:28; cf. Is 53:10-12)” (”Catechism of the Catholic Church”, 440).

When the Church proclaims in the Creed that Christ is seated at the right hand
of the Father, she is saying that it was to Christ that dominion was given; “Being
seated at the Father’s right hand signifies the inauguration of the Messiah’s king-
dom, the fulfillment of the prophet Daniel’s vision concerning the Son of man; ‘To
him was given domination and glory and kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and
languages should serve him; his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall
not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed’ (Dan 7:14). Af-
ter this event the apostles became witnesses of the ‘kingdom [that] will have no
end’ (Nicene Creed)” (”Catechism of the Catholic Church”, 664).

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


4 posted on 11/24/2012 9:28:13 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

From: Revelation 1:5-8

Address and Greeting


[5] And from Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the first-born of the dead, and the
ruler of kings on earth.

To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood [6] and made
us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion for
ever and ever. Amen. [7] Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye
will see him, every one who pierced him; and all tribes of the earth will wail on
account of him. Even so. Amen.

[8] “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was
and who is to come, the Almighty.”

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

5-6. Three messianic titles taken from Psalm 89:28-38 are given a new meaning
in the light of fulfillment of Christian faith and applied to Jesus Christ. He is “the
faithful witness” of the fulfillment of God’s Old Testament promises of a Savior, a
son of David (cf. 2 Sam 7:14; Rev 5:5;), for it is Christ who has in fact brought a-
bout salvation. That is why, later on in the book, St John calls Jesus Christ “the
Amen” (Rev 3:4) — which is like saying that through what Christ did God has ra-
tified and kept his word; St John also calls him “Faithful and True” (Rev 19;11),
because God’s fidelity and the truth of his promises have been manifested in
Jesus. This is to be seen in the Resurrection, which made Jesus “the first-born
from the dead”, in the sense that the Resurrection constituted a victory in which
all who abide in him share (cf. Col 1:18). Christ is also “the ruler of kings on
earth” because he is Lord of the world: this will be clearly seen when he comes
a second time, but his dominion is already making itself felt because he has be-
gun to conquer the power of sin and death.

The second part of v. 5 and all v. 6 are a kind of paean in praise of Christ recalling
his great love for us as expressed in his words, “Greater love has no man than
this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (Jn 15:13). Christ’s love for us
knows no bounds: his generosity led him to sacrifice his life by the shedding of
his blood, which redeemed us from our sins. There was nothing we could have
done to redeem ourselves. “All were held captive by the devil”, St Augustine com-
ments, “and were in the thrall of demons; but they have been rescued from that
captivity. The Redeemer came and paid the ransom: he shed his blood and with
it purchased the entire orb of the earth” (”Enarrationes in Psalmos”, 95, 5).

Not content with setting us free from our sins, our Lord gave us a share in his
kingship and priesthood. “Christ the Lord, high priest taken from among men (cf.
Heb 5:1-5), made the new people ‘a kingdom of priests to his God and Father’
(Rev 1:6; cf. 5:9-10). The baptized, by regeneration and the anointing of the Holy
Spirit, are consecrated to be a spiritual house and a holy priesthood, that through
all the works of Christian men and women they may offer spiritual sacrifices and
proclaim the perfection of him who has called them out of darkness into his mar-
velous light (cf. 1 Pet 2:4-10)” (Vatican II, “Lumen Gentium”, 10).

7. Christ’s work is not finished. He has assembled his holy people on earth to
bring them enduring salvation, and he will be revealed in all his glory to the whole
world at the end of time. Although the text speaks in the present tense — “he is
coming with the clouds”—this should be understood as referring to the future: the
prophet was seeing future events as if they were actually happening (cf. Dan 7:
13). This will be the day of final victory, when those who crucified Jesus, “every
one who pierced him” (cf. Zech 12:10; Jn 19:37), will be astonished by the gran-
deur and glory of the crucified One. “The Sacred Scriptures inform us that there
are two comings of the Son of God—one when he assumed human flesh for our
salvation in the womb of a virgin; the other when he shall come at the end of the
world to judge all mankind [...]; and if, from the beginning of the world that day of
the Lord, on which he was clothed with our flesh, was sighed for by all as the
foundation of their hope of deliverance; so also, after the death and ascension
of the Son of God, we should make that other day of the Lord the object of our
most earnest desires, ‘awaiting our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of
our great God’ (Titus 2:13)” (”St Pius V Catechism”, I, 8, 2).

Commenting on this passage of the Apocalypse, St Bede says: “He who at his
first coming came in a hidden way and in order to be judged (by men) will then
come in a manifest way. (John) recalls these truths in order to help the Church
bear its suffering: now it is being persecuted by its enemies, later it will reign at
Christ’s side” (”Explanatio Apocalypsis”, 1, 1).

The joy of those who put their hope in this glorious manifestation of Christ will
contrast with the pains of those who reject God’s love and mercy to the very end.
“Then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of man co-
ming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Mt 24:30).

8. The coming of the Lord in glory, the climax of his dominion, is guaranteed by
the power of God, the absolute master of the world and its destiny. Alpha and
Omega are the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet; here they are used
to proclaim that God is the beginning and end of all things, of the world and of
history; he is present at all times — times past, present and future.

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States


5 posted on 11/24/2012 9:29:05 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

From: John 18:33b-37

The Trial before Pilate: Jesus is King (Continuation)


[33] Pilate entered the praetorium again and called Jesus, and said to him,
“Are you the King of the Jews?” [34] Jesus answered, “Do you say this of your
own accord, or did others say it to you about me?” [35] Pilate answered, “Am I
a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me; what
have you done?” [36] Jesus answered, “My kingship is not of this world; if my
kingship were of this world, my servants would fight, that I might not be handed
over to the Jews; but my kingship is not from the world.” [37] Pilate said to him,
“So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was
born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth. Every
one who is of the truth hears my voice.”

*******************************************************************************************
Commentary

33-34. There is no onus on Pilate to interfere in religious questions, but because
the accusation levelled against Jesus had to do with politics and public order, he
begins his interrogation naturally by examining him on the main charge: “Are you
the King of the Jews?”

By replying with another question, Jesus is not refusing to answer: he wishes to
make quite clear, as he has always done, that his mission is a spiritual one. And
really Pilate’s was not an easy question to answer, because, to a Gentile, a king
of the Jews meant simply a subverter of the Empire; whereas, to a Jewish natio-
nalist, the King-Messiah was a politico-religious liberator who would obtain their
freedom from Rome. The true character of Christ’s messiahship completely tran-
scends both these concepts—as Jesus explains to the procurator, although he
realizes how enormously difficult it is for Pilate to understand what Christ’s King-
ship really involves.

35-36. After the miracle of the multiplication of the loaves and the fish, Jesus re-
fused to be proclaimed king because the people were thinking in terms of an ear-
thly kingdom (cf. Jn 6:15). However, Jesus did enter Jerusalem in triumph, and
he did accept acclamation as King-Messiah. Now, in the passion, he acknowled-
ges before Pilate that he is truly a King, making it clear that his kingship is not
an earthly one. Thus, “those who expected the Messiah to have visible temporal
power were mistaken. ‘The kingdom of God does not mean food and drink but
righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit’ (Rom 14:17). Truth and jus-
tice, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. That is the kingdom of Christ: the divine
activity which saves men and which will reach its culmination when history ends
and the Lord comes from the heights of paradise finally to judge men” (St. J. Es-
criva, “Christ is Passing By”, 180).

37. This is what his kingship really is: his kingdom is “the kingdom of Truth
and Life, the kingdom of Holiness and Grace, the kingdom of Justice, Love and
Peace” (Preface of the Mass of Christ the King). Christ reigns over those who
accept and practise the truth revealed by him—his Father’s love for the world (Jn
3:16; 1 Jn 4:9). He became man to make this truth known and to enable men to
accept it. And so, those who recognize Christ’s kingship and sovereignty accept
his authority, and he thus reigns over them in an eternal and universal kingdom.

For its part, “the Church, looking to Christ who bears witness to the truth, must
always and everywhere ask herself, and in a certain sense also the contempo-
rary ‘world’, how to make good emerge from man, how to liberate the dynamism
of the good that is in man, in order that it may be stronger than evil, than any mo-
ral, social or other evil” (John Paul II, “General Audience”, 21 February 1979).

“If we [Christians] are trying to have Christ as our king we must be consistent.
We must start by giving him our heart. Not to do that and still talk about the king-
dom of Christ would be completely hollow. There would be no real Christian sub-
stance in our behavior. We would be making an outward show of a faith which
simply did not exist. We would be misusing God’s name to human advantage. If
we let Christ reign in our souls, we will not become authoritarian. Rather we will
serve everyone. How l like that word: service! To serve my king and, through him,
all those who have been redeemed by his blood. I really wish we Christians knew
how to serve, for only by serving can we know and love Christ and make him
known and loved” (St. J. Escriva, “Christ is Passing By”, 181-182).

By his death and resurrection, Jesus shows that the accusations laid against
him were based on lies: it was he who was telling the truth, not his judges and
accusers, and God confirms the truth of Jesus—the truth of his words, of deeds,
of his revelation—by the singular miracle of his resurrection. To men Christ’s king-
ship may seem paradoxical: he dies, yet he lives for ever; he is defeated and is
crucified, yet he is victorious. “When Jesus Christ him appeared as a prisoner
before Pilate’s tribunal and was interrogated by him...did he not answer: ‘For this
I was born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth’?
It was as if with these words [...] he was once more confirming what he had said
earlier: ‘You will know the truth, and truth will make you free’. In the course of so
many centuries, of so many generations, from the time of the Apostles on, is it
not often Jesus Christ himself that has made an appearance at the side of peo-
ple judged for the sake of truth? And has he not gone to death with people con-
demned for the sake of truth? Does he ever cease to be the continuous spokes-
man and advocate for person who lives ‘in spirit and truth’ (cf. Jn 4:23)? Just as
he does not cease to be it before the Father, he is it also with regard to the his-
tory of man” (John Paul II, “Redemptor Hominis”, 12).

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


6 posted on 11/24/2012 9:30:33 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Scripture readings taken from the Jerusalem Bible, published and copyright © 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman & Todd

Readings at Mass


First reading Daniel 7:13-14 ©
I gazed into the visions of the night.
And I saw, coming on the clouds of heaven,
one like a son of man.
He came to the one of great age
and was led into his presence.
On him was conferred sovereignty,
glory and kingship,
and men of all peoples, nations and languages became his servants.
His sovereignty is an eternal sovereignty
which shall never pass away,
nor will his empire ever be destroyed.

Psalm Psalm 92:1-2,5 ©
The Lord is king, with majesty enrobed.
The Lord is king, with majesty enrobed;
  the Lord has robed himself with might,
  he has girded himself with power.
The Lord is king, with majesty enrobed.
The world you made firm, not to be moved;
  your throne has stood firm from of old.
  From all eternity, O Lord, you are.
The Lord is king, with majesty enrobed.
Truly your decrees are to be trusted.
  Holiness is fitting to your house,
  O Lord, until the end of time.
The Lord is king, with majesty enrobed.

Second reading Apocalypse 1:5-8 ©
Jesus Christ is the faithful witness, the First-born from the dead, the Ruler of the kings of the earth. He loves us and has washed away our sins with his blood, and made us a line of kings, priests to serve his God and Father; to him, then, be glory and power for ever and ever. Amen. It is he who is coming on the clouds; everyone will see him, even those who pierced him, and all the races of the earth will mourn over him. This is the truth. Amen. ‘I am the Alpha and the Omega’ says the Lord God, who is, who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.

Gospel Acclamation Mk11:10
Alleluia, alleluia!
Blessings on him who comes in the name of the Lord!
Blessings on the coming kingdom of our father David!
Alleluia!

Gospel John 18:33-37 ©
‘Are you the king of the Jews?’ Pilate asked. Jesus replied, ‘Do you ask this of your own accord, or have others spoken to you about me?’ Pilate answered, ‘Am I a Jew? It is your own people and the chief priests who have handed you over to me: what have you done?’ Jesus replied, ‘Mine is not a kingdom of this world; if my kingdom were of this world, my men would have fought to prevent my being surrendered to the Jews. But my kingdom is not of this kind.’ ‘So you are a king then?’ said Pilate. ‘It is you who say it’ answered Jesus. ‘Yes, I am a king. I was born for this, I came into the world for this: to bear witness to the truth; and all who are on the side of truth listen to my voice.’

7 posted on 11/24/2012 9:35:06 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

Archbishop Chaput says Year of Faith holds solution to relativism
Following the Truth: The Year Of Faith – 10 Things You Should Know [Catholic Caucus]
Papal Encyclical on Faith Announced

On the Desire for God
On the Ecclesial Nature of Faith
On the Nature of Faith
Catechism's benefits explained for Year of Faith (Catholic Caucus)
A Life of Faith: Papal Theologian Speaks on the Grace of Faith
ASIA/LAOS - "Year of Faith" amid the persecutions of Christians forced to become "animists"
From no faith to a mountain-top of meaning: Father John Nepil (Catholic Caucus)
Living the Year of Faith: How Pope Benedict Wants You to Begin [Catholic Caucus]
Share Your Faith in This Year of Faith: Two keys to help you do it.
On A New Series of Audiences for The Year of Faith

Pope will deliver year-long teaching series on restoring faith
Pope Benedict XVI Grants Plenary Indulgence to Faithful [Catholic Caucus]
Pope, at Marian shrine, entrusts Year of Faith, synod to Mary (Catholic Caucus)
Catholic Church Calls for Public Prayers in Offices on Fridays
Highlights in the Plan for Year of Faith: Traditional Events Will Take on Special Perspective
Catholic Church calls for public prayers in offices on Fridays
Vatican Unveils Logo for Year of Faith [Catholic Caucus]
Miami Prelate Recalls Pope's Visit to Cuba, Looks to Year of Faith [Catholic Caucus]
The World-Changing Year of Faith [Catholic Caucus]
Vatican to Issue Recommendations for Celebrating Year of Faith

8 posted on 11/24/2012 9:39:01 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

 

  PRAYERS AFTER
HOLY MASS AND COMMUNION

 


Leonine Prayers
    Following are the Prayers after Low Mass which were prescribed by Pope Leo XIII who composed the Prayer to Saint Michael the Archangel, and were reinforced by Pope Pius XI and Pope Pius XII to pray for the conversion of Russia. Below the normal Leonine Prayers is the longer version of the Prayer to St. Michael, composed by His Excellency Pope Leo XIII to defend against The Great Apostasy.
Latin

Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum, benedicta tu in mulieribus et benedictus fructis ventris tui, Jesus. Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen.
(Said 3 times)

    Salve Regina, Mater misericordiae, vita, dulcedo, et spes nostra, salve. Ad te clamamus, exsules filii Evae. Ad te suspiramus gementes et fientes in hac lacrymarum valle. Eia ergo, Advocata nostra, illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte. Et Jesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui, nobis, post hoc exilium, ostende. O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria. Ora pro nobis, sancta Dei Genitrix. Ut digni efficiamur promissionibus Christi.

    Oremus. Deus, refugium nostrum et virtus, populum ad te clamantem propitius respice; et intercedente gloriosa, et immaculata Virgine Dei Genitrice Maria, cum beato Joseph, ejus Sponso, ac beatis Apostolis tuis Petro et Paulo, et omnibus Sanctis, quas pro conversione peccatorum, pro libertate et exaltatione sanctae Matris Ecclesiae, preces effundimus, misericors et benignus exaudi. Per eundum Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.

Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in proelio; contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium. Imperet illi Deus, supplices deprecamur: tuque, Princeps militiae Caelestis, satanam aliosque spiritus malignos, qui ad perditionem animarum pervagantur in mundo, divina virtute in infernum detrude. Amen.

Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.
Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.
Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.

Vernacular

   Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.
(Said 3 times)

   Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness, and our hope. To thee to we cry, poor banished children of Eve. To thee do we send up our sighs, mouring and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us, and after this exile, show unto us the blessed Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.

Pray for us, O holy Mother of God. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

   Let us pray.
O God, our refuge and our strength, look down with mercy upon the people who cry to Thee; and by the intercession of the glorious and immaculate Virgin Mary, Mother of God, of Saint Joseph her spouse, of the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and of all the saints, in Thy mercy and goodness hear our prayers for the conversion of sinners, and for the liberty and exaltation of the Holy Mother the Church. Through the same Christ Our Lord. Amen.

   Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle; be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray: and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust into hell satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.


Complete Prayer to Saint Michael
    The following is the longer version of the vital prayer composed by Pope Leo XIII in 1888 after his startling vision as to the future of the Church. This prayer was dedicated for the Feast of St. Michael 1448 years from the date of the election of the first Leo - Pope Saint Leo the Great. Everyone is familiar with the first prayer below which was mandated by His Holiness as part of the Leonine Prayers after Low Mass. Below are both the short and longer versions of this poignant prayer which should never be forgotten.

    Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him we humbly pray, and do thou, O heavenly hosts, by the power of God, thrust into hell satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world for the ruin of souls. Amen.

O glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Prince of the heavenly host, be our defense in the terrible warfare which we carry on against principalities and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, spirits of evil. Come to the aid of man, whom God created immortal, made in His own image and likeness, and redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil. Fight this day the battle of our Lord, together with the holy angels, as already thou hast fought the leader of the proud angels, Lucifer, and his apostate host, who were powerless to resist thee, nor was there place for them any longer in heaven. That cruel, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil or Satan who seduces the whole world, was cast into the abyss with his angels. Behold this primeval enemy and slayer of men has taken courage. Transformed into an angel of light, he wanders about with all the multitude of wicked spirits, invading the earth in order to blot out the Name of God and of His Christ, to seize upon, slay, and cast into eternal perdition, souls destined for the crown of eternal glory. That wicked dragon pours out. as a most impure flood, the venom of his malice on men of depraved mind and corrupt heart, the spirit of lying, of impiety, of blasphemy, and the pestilent breath of impurity, and of every vice and iniquity. These most crafty enemies have filled and inebriated with gall and bitterness the Church, the spouse of the Immaculate Lamb, and have laid impious hands on Her most sacred possessions. In the Holy Place itself, where has been set up the See of the most holy Peter and the Chair of Truth for the light of the world, they have raised the throne of their abominable impiety with the iniquitous design that when the Pastor has been struck the sheep may be scattered. Arise then, O invincible Prince, bring help against the attacks of the lost spirits to the people of God, and give them the victory. They venerate thee as their protector and patron; in thee holy Church glories as her defense against the malicious powers of hell; to thee has God entrusted the souls of men to be established in heavenly beatitude. Oh, pray to the God of peace that He may put Satan under our feet, so far conquered that he may no longer be able to hold men in captivity and harm the Church. Offer our prayers in the sight of the Most High, so that they may quickly conciliate the mercies of the Lord; and beating down the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, do thou again make him captive in the abyss, that he may no longer seduce the nations. Amen.

    V: Behold the Cross of the Lord; be scattered ye hostile powers.
    R: The Lion of the Tribe of Juda has conquered the root of David.
    V: Let Thy mercies be upon us, O Lord.
    R: As we have hoped in Thee.
    V: O Lord hear my prayer.
    R: And let my cry come unto Thee.

    V: Let us pray. O God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we call upon Thy holy Name, and as suppliants, we implore Thy clemency, that by the intercession of Mary, ever Virgin, immaculate and our Mother, and of the glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Thou wouldst deign to help us against Satan and all other unclean spirits, who wander about the world for the injury of the human race and the ruin of our souls. Amen.


Prayer Before the Crucifix

   Look down upon me, O good and gentle Jesus, while before Thy face I humbly kneel, and with burning soul pray and beseech Thee to fix deep in my heart lively sentiments of faith, hope and charity, true contrition for my sins, and a firm purpose of amendment; the while I contemplate with great love and tender pity Thy five most precious wounds, pondering over them within me, calling to mind the words which David Thy prophet said of Thee, my good Jesus: "They have pierced My hands and My feet; they have numbered all My bones."

Indulgence of ten years; a plenary indulgence if recited after devout reception of Holy Communion, Raccolta 201)

Anima Christi - Soul of Christ

Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, inebriate me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O Good Jesus, hear me.
Within Thy wounds, hide me.
Suffer me not to be separated from Thee.
From the malignant enemy, defend me.
In the hour of my death, call me.
And bid me come to Thee, that with
Thy saints I may praise Thee for ever and ever. Amen.

Indulgence of 300 days; if recited after devout reception of Holy Communion, seven years Raccolta 131)

Prayer for Vocations

   O Lord Jesus Christ, Who didst take to Thyself a body and soul like ours, to teach us the glory of self-sacrifice and service, mercifully deign to instill in other hearts the desire to dedicate their lives to Thee. Give us PRIESTS to stand before Thine Altar and to preach the words of Thy Gospel; BROTHERS to assist the priests and to reproduce in themselves Thy humility; SISTERS to teach the young and nurse the sick and to minister Thy charity to all; LAY PEOPLE to imitate Thee in their homes and families. Amen

9 posted on 11/24/2012 9:40:19 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Prayers for The Religion Forum (Ecumenical)
10 posted on 11/24/2012 9:40:52 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Continue to Pray for Pope Benedict [Ecumenical]
11 posted on 11/24/2012 9:41:59 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
 
Jesus, High Priest
 

We thank you, God our Father, for those who have responded to your call to priestly ministry.

Accept this prayer we offer on their behalf: Fill your priests with the sure knowledge of your love.

Open their hearts to the power and consolation of the Holy Spirit.

Lead them to new depths of union with your Son.

Increase in them profound faith in the Sacraments they celebrate as they nourish, strengthen and heal us.

Lord Jesus Christ, grant that these, your priests, may inspire us to strive for holiness by the power of their example, as men of prayer who ponder your word and follow your will.

O Mary, Mother of Christ and our mother, guard with your maternal care these chosen ones, so dear to the Heart of your Son.

Intercede for our priests, that offering the Sacrifice of your Son, they may be conformed more each day to the image of your Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Saint John Vianney, universal patron of priests, pray for us and our priests

This icon shows Jesus Christ, our eternal high priest.

The gold pelican over His heart represents self-sacrifice.

The border contains an altar and grapevines, representing the Mass, and icons of Melchizedek and St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney.

Melchizedek: king of righteousness (left icon) was priest and king of Jerusalem.  He blessed Abraham and has been considered an ideal priest-king.

St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney is the patron saint of parish priests.


12 posted on 11/24/2012 9:42:48 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Pray a Rosary each day for our nation.

Pray the Rosary

1.  Sign of the Cross:  In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

2.  The Apostles Creed:  I BELIEVE in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth. I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell. On the third day He rose again. He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty. From there He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

3.  The Lord's Prayer:  OUR Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

4. (3) Hail Mary:  HAIL Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now, and in the hour of our death. Amen. (Three times)

5. Glory Be:  GLORY be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Fatima Prayer: Oh, my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to heaven, especially those in most need of your mercy.

Announce each mystery, then say 1 Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, 1 Glory Be and 1 Fatima prayer.  Repeat the process with each mystery.

End with the Hail Holy Queen:

Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve! To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears! Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us; and after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus!

O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary! Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Final step -- The Sign of the Cross

 

The Mysteries of the Rosary

By tradition, Catholics meditate on these Mysteries during prayers of the Rosary.
The biblical references follow each of the Mysteries below.


The Glorious Mysteries
(Wednesdays and Sundays)
1.The Resurrection (Matthew 28:1-8, Mark 16:1-18, Luke 24:1-12, John 20:1-29) [Spiritual fruit - Faith]
2. The Ascension (Mark 16:19-20, Luke 24:50-53, Acts 1:6-11) [Spiritual fruit - Christian Hope]
3. The Descent of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-13) [Spiritual fruit - Gifts of the Holy Spirit]
4. The Assumption [Spiritual fruit - To Jesus through Mary]
5. The Coronation [Spiritual fruit - Grace of Final Perseverance]


13 posted on 11/24/2012 9:44:17 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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~ PRAYER ~

St. Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle
 Be our protection against the wickedness
and snares of the devil;
May God rebuke him, we  humbly pray,
 and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host,
 by the power of God,
 Cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits
who prowl through the world seeking the ruin of souls.
 Amen
+

14 posted on 11/24/2012 9:44:49 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

A Prayer for our Free Nation Under God
God Save Our Country web site (prayer warriors)
Prayer Chain Request for the United States of America
Pray for Nancy Pelosi
Prayer and fasting will help defeat health care reform (Freeper Prayer Thread)
Prayer Campaign Started to Convert Pro-Abortion Catholic Politicians to Pro-Life
[Catholic Caucus] One Million Rosaries
Non-stop Rosary vigil to defeat ObamaCare

From an Obama bumper sticker on a car:

"Pray for Obama.  Psalm 109:8"

   

PLEASE JOIN US -

Evening Prayer
Someone has said that if people really understood the full extent of the power we have available through prayer, we might be speechless.
Did you know that during WWII there was an advisor to Churchill who organized a group of people who dropped what they were doing every day at a prescribed hour for one minute to collectively pray for the safety of England, its people and peace?  


There is now a group of people organizing the same thing here in America. If you would like to participate: Every evening at 9:00 PM Eastern Time (8:00 PM Central) (7:00 PM Mountain) (6:00 PM Pacific), stop whatever you are doing and spend one minute praying for the safety of the United States, our troops, our citizens, and for a return to a Godly nation. If you know anyone else who would like to participate, please pass this along. Our prayers are the most powerful asset we have.    Please forward this to your praying friends.


15 posted on 11/24/2012 9:45:37 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
 
St. Teresa of Avila Interceding for the Souls in Purgatory, from the workshop of Peter Paul Reubens, 1577–1640


II Maccabees 12:43-46: "And making a gathering, he [Judas] sent twelve thousand drachms of silver to Jerusalem for sacrifice to be offered for the sins of the dead, thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection, (For if he had not hoped that they that were slain should rise again, it would have seemed superfluous and vain to pray for the dead,) And because he considered that they who had fallen asleep with godliness, had great grace laid up for them. It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins."

November Devotion: The Holy Souls in Purgatory

Since the 16th century Catholic piety has assigned entire months to special devotions. As a reminder of our duty to pray for the suffering faithful in Purgatory, the Church has dedicated the month of November to the Holy Souls. The Holy Souls are those who have died in the state of grace but who are not yet free from all punishment due to their unforgiven venial sins and all other sins already forgiven for which satisfaction is still to be made. They are certain of entering Heaven, but first they must suffer in Purgatory. The Holy Souls cannot help themselves because for them the night has come, when no man can work (John 9:4). It is our great privilege of brotherhood that we can shorten their time of separation from God by our prayers, good works, and, especially, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

To Help the Holy Souls in Purgatory:

1. Have the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass offered up for them.

2. Pray the Rosary and or the Chaplet of Divine Marcy for them, or both.

3. Pray the Stations of the Cross.

4. Offer up little sacrifices and fasting.

5. Spread devotion to them, so that others may pray for them.

6. Attend Eucharistic Adoration and pray for them.

7. Gain all the indulgences you can, and apply them to the Holy Souls

8. Visit to a Cemetery

Say here the prayer for the day, click on torch for specific day:

SUNDAY

MONDAY

TUESDAY

WEDNESDAY

THURSDAY

FRIDAY

SATURDAY


Litany for the Holy Souls in Purgatory

V. The just shall be in everlasting remembrance; 
R. He shall not fear the evil hearing.
 
V. Absolve, O Lord, the souls of the faithful departed from every bond of sin, 
R. And by the help of Thy grace may they be enabled to escape the avenging judgment, 
and to enjoy the happiness of eternal life.  
V. Because in Thy mercy are deposited the souls that departed in an inferior degree of grace, 
R. Lord, have mercy.
V. Because their present suffering is greatest in the knowledge of the pain that their separation from Thee is causing Thee,
R. Lord, have mercy. 
V. Because of their present inability to add to Thy accidental glory, 
R. Lord, have mercy.
V. Not for our consolation, O Lord; not for their release from purgative pain, O God; 
but for Thy joy and the greater accidental honour of Thy throne, O Christ the King,
R. Lord, have mercy.
 
 
V. For the souls of our departed friends, relations and benefactors, 
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those of our family who have fallen asleep in Thy bosom, O Jesus, 
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those who have gone to prepare our place,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. (For those who were our brothers [or sisters] in Religion,)
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For priests who were our spiritual directors,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For men or women who were our teachers in school,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those who were our employers (or employees),
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those who were our associates in daily toil,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For any soul whom we ever offended,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For our enemies now departed,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those souls who have none to pray for them,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those forgotten by their friends and kin,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those now suffering the most,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those who have acquired the most merit,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For the souls next to be released from Purgatory,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
 V. For those who, while on earth, were most devoted to God the Holy Ghost, to Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament, 
to the holy Mother of God,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For all deceased popes and prelates,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For all deceased priests, seminarians and religious, 
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For all our brethren in the Faith everywhere, 
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For all our separated brethren who deeply loved Thee, and would have come into Thy household had they known the truth,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those souls who need, or in life asked, our prayers,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those, closer to Thee than we are, whose prayers we need,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
 
 
V. That those may be happy with Thee forever, who on earth were true exemplars of the Catholic Faith, 
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.
V. That those may be admitted to Thine unveiled Presence, who as far as we know never committed mortal sin,     
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.  
V. That those may be housed in glory, who lived always in recollection and prayer,
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.  
V. That those may be given the celestial joy of beholding Thee, who lived lives of mortification and self-denial and penance,
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.  
V. That those may be flooded with Thy love, who denied themselves even Thy favours of indulgence and who made the heroic act for the souls who had gone before them,
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.  
V. That those may be drawn up to the Beatific Vision, who never put obstacles in the way of sanctifying grace and who ever drew closer in mystical union with Thee,
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.  
 
 
V. Eternal rest give unto them, O Lord, 
R. And let perpetual light shine upon them. 
 
Let Us Pray 
Be mindful, O Lord, of Thy servants and handmaids, N. and N., who are gone before us with the sign of faith and repose in the sleep of grace.  To these, O Lord, 
and to all who rest in Christ, grant, we beseech Thee, a place of refreshment, light and peace, through the same Christ Our Lord.
 
Amen


All Saints or All Souls? Differences should be black and white
All Souls' Day [Catholic Caucus]
Why I Am Catholic: For Purgatory, Thank Heavens (Ecumenical)
Q and A: Why Pray for the Dead? [Ecumenical]
“….and Death is Gain” – A Meditation on the Christian View of Death [Catholic Caucus]
99 & 1/2 Won’t Do – A Meditation on Purgatory
The Month of November: Thoughts on the "Last Things"
To Trace All Souls Day (Protestants vs Catholics)

November 2 -- All Souls Day
On November: All Souls and the "Permanent Things"
"From the Pastor" ALL SAINTS & ALL SOULS
Praying for the Dead [All Souls Day] (Catholic/Orthodox Caucus)
To Trace All Souls Day [Ecumenical]
All Souls Day [Catholic/Orthodox Caucus]
The Roots of All Souls Day
The Commemoration of all the Faithful Departed (All Souls)
During Month of Souls, Recall Mystic, St. Gertrude the Great
All Saints and All Souls


16 posted on 11/24/2012 9:49:11 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

November 2012

Pope's intentions

General Intention: Ministers of the Gospel. That bishops, priests, and all ministers of the Gospel may bear the courageous witness of fidelity to the crucified and risen Lord.

Missionary Intention: Pilgrim Church. That the pilgrim Church on earth may shine as a light to the nations.


17 posted on 11/24/2012 9:49:54 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Arlington Catholic Herald

GOSPEL COMMENTARY JN 18:33B-37
Good kings and bad kings
Father Jerry J. Pokorsky

The desire to be king — or even to accept the office of king — is a curious thing. What kind of person would want to be in charge of an entire nation or people? What kind of man would want to be in control of anything other than his own affairs? Some people consider kingship a “prize” or a reward. Others, especially those who inherit or are elected to the office, more soberly consider it a burden or a grave responsibility. (Pope Benedict XVI, after being elected pope in 2005, joked that he felt like a guillotine was falling on him.) But motives for seeking the office of king probably include all the virtues and vices known to man.

There are many examples of powerful rulers who were very bad men. The 20th century has a notorious history of tyranny rivaling every other epoch. Some rulers were ruthless thugs or gangsters, such as Joseph Stalin, the Soviet dictator, who committed mass murder (50 million people is a number historians seem to agree upon) to protect his turf against encroachment. Others were ideologues who killed for some great cause. Mao Zedong in China rivaled Stalin in mass murder in the name of a “classless society.” Adolph Hitler was a relatively minor tyrant with “only” 12 million murders to his credit. A master race needs to be purified from time to time.

This is not to suggest that all desires to be king are necessarily bad. With pure motives rulers may be in position truly to serve their subjects. The church has canonized several kings and queens for their sanctity, proving it is truly possible, after all, for a ruler to enter into heaven. The Catholic Encyclopedia, for example, tells us of 13th-century St. Louis VIII of France: “St. Louis led an exemplary life, bearing constantly in mind his mother's words: ‘I would rather see you dead at my feet than guilty of a mortal sin.’ His biographers have told us of the long hours he spent in prayer, fasting and penance, without the knowledge of his subjects.” Indeed the court of justice established by King Louis influenced the judiciaries of all of Christendom.

All great men need to be reminded of a fundamental truth about authority and power. During the trial of Christ, Pilate threatens Him: “Do you refuse to speak to me? Don’t you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you?” Jesus answers with a truth that echoes through the ages: “You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above” (Jn 19:8-11). All kingly power, all power of office or any position of authority is granted by God, for us to use or abuse. Even petty tyrants like Pontius Pilate and King Herod have a legitimate authority granted to them by God Himself in His Providence. But those who aspire to kingship or hold any position of authority are true kings only to the extent that they, with humility, participate in the kingship of Christ.

In this Sunday’s Gospel, Christ acknowledges He is a king, but not of this world: “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.” This does not mean, however, that his nonviolent kingship has no influence on earthly affairs. Quite the contrary. The divine kingship of Christ is the absolute measure of worldly kings: “For this I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

There is an amusing G.K. Chesterton poem depicting a donkey delighting in the adulation he received in a procession. It concludes:

“For I also had my hour; / One far fierce hour and sweet: / There was a shout about my ears, / And palms before my feet.”

The donkey, of course, is the one carrying Christ, the King of Kings into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. The donkey is not the subject of the adoration of the crowds; Christ is. A wise ruler will not permit praise and admiration to become a narcotic of vainglory. Every king — in the family, in civil society, in the church — serves under the authority of God. He belongs to Christ the King and will be judged by the truth of Christ.

Fr. Pokorsky is pastor of St. Michael Parish in Annandale.


18 posted on 11/24/2012 10:02:59 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Archdiocese of Washington

Is He your King? Really? A Meditation on the Gospel of Christ the King

By: Msgr. Charles Pope

On the feast of Christ the King, we are called to acknowledge that Jesus is, in fact our King. It is one thing to say that he is our King because the song in Church we sang said that, or the preacher said that, or the Bible says that. Yes, faith does come by hearing. But there also comes a moment when WE must say that Jesus is our King. When we must personally affirm what the Church has always announced: “Jesus is Lord, and he is King, he is my king. He has authority in my life.”And this must become more than lip service. It must become a daily, increasing reality in our life.

Kings take care of us, but they also have the authority to command us. Can Christ command you or me? Or are we more typical of the modern person who doesn’t like to be told what to do? Or perhaps we suffer from the more mild form of this attitude that reduces and trivializes Jesus to being the “harmless hippie” who just says pleasant things about peace and flowers, but would never rebuke us or command us to repent.

And so, again the question for us: Is Jesus Christ your King?

And that brings us to the Gospel for today’s Mass. Now, the Gospels are not theater, as though we were in the audience and watching a story unfold, a story that took place 2000 years ago. No, we are in the story. We are not just to observe what Peter, or Pilate, of James, or Mary Magdalene do. They are us and we are them.

One of the things that this means is that when Jesus asks them a question, we cannot merely wait and see how they will answer as though we were watching a movie. No, WE have to answer the question.

In today’s Gospel the spotlight moves to Pontius Pilate. And the Lord asks the critical question of him (i.e. us) that we are here pondering. And we cannot simply wait to see how Pilate answers that question, WE have to answer it. Consider this Gospel in three stages.

I. INDECISION – In a remarkable display of literary artistry, John and the Holy Spirit vividly depict the vacillation of  Pontius Pilate. For in this  Gospel passage of the trial of Jesus, Pilate goes in and out of the Praetorium (i.e. the Governor’s palace) more than a bell-hop through the revolving door of a hotel. Indeed he goes in and out seven times. Note the text with the texts describing his motions highlighted in bold text:

29So Pilate went out to them and said, “What accusation do you bring against this man?” …..33Pilate [re]entered the praetorium and called Jesus…..” 39After he had said this, he went out to the Jews again, and told them, “I find no crime in him…..1Then Pilate took Jesus [back into the praetorium] and scourged him…… 4Pilate went out again, and said to them, “See, I am bringing him out to you, that you may know that I find no crime in him….8When Pilate heard these words, he was the more afraid; 9he re-entered the praetorium and [spoke] to Jesus….12Upon this Pilate [went back out] and sought to release him, but the Jews cried out, “If you release this man, you are not Caesar’s friend…When Pilate heard these words, he brought Jesus out and he sat down on the judgment seat…..(John 18-19 selected verses)

Did you count? Seven times Pilate goes in or out of the Praetorium! Such a picture of indecision an vacillation! He’s trying to please the crowds, he’s trying to please his wife (who had warned him to have nothing to do with that innocent man (Mat 27:19)), he’s trying to help Jesus. But he can’t decide! In and out he goes!

He is like us. We say we love God, but we also love the world. We want to please others, we want to please God. We cannot do both. We have to decide. But instead we vacillate, we go back and forth. We are Pilate. We are often locked in indecision, we vacillate, trying to please the world, trying to please others and to please God.

Is Pilate really so different from many of us? Faced with a crucial decision, he weighs the consequences that choosing Jesus will have on his career, his future, his family, his loyalty to country and Caesar, his access to power, and so forth. And while we may rightfully criticize Pilate  for his choice, is it not easy for so many of us to make compromises with the world for the sake of similar things? How often does Jesus our King take a back seat to career, politics, convenience and so on? And so easily we stay rooted in vacillation, compromise and indecision.

II. INQUIRY – And now, in the midst of all this indecision comes the question.

Pilate begins with his own question: “Are you the King of the Jews?” (John 18:33) But Jesus, who is on trial, turns the tables on Pilate and putting him on trail asks him the crucial question:

Are you saying this on your own or have others been telling you about me?” (John 18:34).

A remarkable question! And guess what?! YOU have to answer it, I have to answer it. Do not wait for Pilate, he has already made his answer and he has faced his judgment centuries ago. But YOU, and ME, how do WE answer the question?

Now notice what the Lord is getting at. He is asking you if you call him a King merely because you have heard others say this or because you personally know him to be King. Is he really your King, or this just a slogan you’ve heard in church before? Do you believe he is King or do you merely parrot what you’ve heard others say?

There is an old Gospel song that says, “Yes I know Jesus for myself.” But is that really the case with us? Too many of us are satisfied with a kind of inferential faith. Inferential faith is based merely on what others have said: “I think, or suppose, that is I infer that Jesus is Lord because my mother said so, or my pastor said so.” This is a good beginning, for after all, faith comes by hearing (Rom 10:17).

But there comes a moment when YOU have to say so. It is not enough that your pastor says so, or your mother says so. And thus Jesus is asking you and me right now: “Are you saying I am King on your own or merely because others have said so?”

Answer him…..It’s a crucial question isn’t it? The faith of the Church is essential, normative and determinative, but at some point you have to step up and say, I personally affirm that the faith of the Church is true and is mine and I hereby declare: “Jesus is Lord and King.”

And what does it mean that he is King? As we have already discussed, A king has authority doesn’t he? Does Jesus have authority in my life? Do I have the obedience of faith (Rom 1:5) and base my life upon his will?

A king also takes care of his people and protects them. Do I allow the Lord to feed me with the Holy Eucharist? Do I allow him to protect me from the poison of sin by the sacrament of confession and the medicine of his Holy Word? Am I willing to live within the protection of the walled city of his Church?

Is the Lord really my King? How do I answer? Is it more than a slogan or is his Kingship real? Let the Lord ask one more time:

Are you saying I am a king on your own or have others been telling you about me?

III. IMPLICATION - You have to answer. To refuse to answer, IS to answer.

A fascinating and wondrous literary device is employed by John and the Holy Spirit in this Gospel passage. We have already seen how Jesus, who was on trial, has turned the tables, and it is now Pilate who is really on trial. Pilate who has the duty to question Jesus is now being questioned by him. And it is Pilate who must now make a decision, not so much about Jesus, but about himself. He has been asked a question he cannot ultimately avoid and now it is time to answer. And here is where the ingenious literary device comes into play. Look carefully at this line from John’s Gospel and see if you notice anything strange:

Upon this [the shouting of Crucify him!]Pilate sought to release him, but the Jews cried out, “If you release this man, you are not Caesar’s friend; every one who makes himself a king sets himself against Caesar.” When Pilate heard these words, he brought Jesus out, and he sat down on the judgment seat at a place called The Pavement, and in Hebrew, Gabbatha. (John 19:12-13)

So what is strange here? Well notice that when Pilate has Jesus brought out, “he” sat on the judgment seat. Who exactly is sitting on the judgment seat? Well, you might say, Pilate of course!” And historically that might have been true. But the text is ambiguous as to the exact identity of “he” and most Scripture scholars argue that it is supposed to be ambiguous.

From the standpoint of historical facts it was likely Pilate who took that seat. But from the standpoint of Divine Justice it is Jesus who takes that seat.

He has turned the tables on Pilate. Pilate is now on trial and the verdict is about to be revealed. Pilate will seal his own fate when he hands Jesus over to be crucified. His vacillation is over. He has made his choice. He has answered the question.

From this context it is Jesus who sits silently upon the judgment seat. The verdict is in. In deciding to hand Jesus over, in deciding to favor himself and the crowds over Jesus, Pilate has brought judgment on himself.

Too many of us have cartoonish notions about our final judgment. Many today conceive of that judgment as either a benign Jesus giving us a great big hug, or for the condemned, an angry Lord gleefully passing judgment on his “enemies.” Perhaps too there is some notion of the repetition of our deeds, good or bad, and the pronouncing of some sort of verdict, while we cringe and wait. But Jesus is not a King who imposes his Kingdom. He is one who invites our entry into his Kingdom. So ultimately judgment is about our choice, not His.

And. thus what if judgment is finally this: the Lord, who suffered for us, respectfully and quietly seated on the Judgement seat, accepting our final choice, a choice that is the cumulative sum of all our choices, a choice that is now and forever fixed? Isn’t that what really happens here?

The Lord has called the question for Pilate, as he does for us. But the choice is for Pilate and the judgement he brings on himself. A choice either to accept the Lord’s kingship, or to reject it and see the Lord led away, while he (Pilate himself) stands alone, the judgment having been rendered by his own choice.

Yes, there are implications as to whether we accept the Lord for our King or not. Today the Lord asks us all: “Will you let me be your King?” And to those of us who say, “yes,” the Lord has this further question, “Are you saying this on your own or is it just that others have been telling you about me?” Is he really our King? Think about it. There are implications.

The question that we cannot fail to answer has now been answered by Pilate. What is your answer? What is mine?

There is an mp3 of this sermon recorded Saturday night here: King or no


19 posted on 11/24/2012 10:14:42 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Sunday Gospel Reflections

Solemnity of Christ The King
Reading I:
Daniel 7:13-14 II: Revelation 1:5-8
Gospel
John 18:33-38

33 Pilate entered the praetorium again and called Jesus, and said to him, "Are you the King of the Jews?"
34 Jesus answered, "Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to you about me?"
35 Pilate answered, "Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me; what have you done?"
36 Jesus answered, "My kingship is not of this world; if my kingship were of this world, my servants would fight, that I might not be handed over to the Jews; but my kingship is not from the world."
37 Pilate said to him, "So you are a king?" Jesus answered, "You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth. Every one who is of the truth hears my voice."
38 Pilate said to him, "What is truth?" After he had said this, he went out to the Jews again, and told them, "I find no crime in him.


Interesting Details
  • Chapter 18 of John describes the arrest and the trial of Jesus. Here is the sequence of actions:
    - Jesus is arrested (vv. 1-11)
    - Jesus is brought to Caiphas (13-14)
    - Peter denies Jesus (15-18)
    - Caiphas interrogates Jesus (19-24)
    - Peter denies Jesus again (25-27)
    - Pilate talks with "the Jews" about what they have accused Jesus (28-32)
    - Pilate talks with Jesus about Jesus' kingship (33-38)
    - Pilate talks with "the Jews" again about Jesus' innocence (39-40)
    Today, our reading (Pilate talks with Jesus about his kingship, vv. 33b-38) deals with the charge against Jesus.
  • In v. 33, when Pilate asks Jesus: "Are you the King of the Jews?" (v. 33), he helps clarifying the charge against Jesus. Jesus was accused of being a king (a political, revolutionary leader), which indicates some sort of rebellion against the Roman Empire.
  • Jesus replies that his kingdom is not of this world (v. 36). We may restate this as "his kingdom is in this world" but not "of (or belonging to) this world." Here, the world (or the flesh) indicates the evil of the world. This statement shows the dualism between the goodness of Jesus and the evil of world.
  • Later, Jesus said he was born and came into the world to testify to the truth (v. 37). Like Pilate, we response in unison: What is truth? In John, we hear about the spirit of truth, about the truth sets us free. Jesus' word is equated with truth. Truth is real; truth is true. It is the reference to God, o a divine reality, of which Jesus came to reveal to us.
  • Lastly, Jesus' answer assures Pilate that he is not a political evolutionary. Interestingly, Jesus managed to "turn the table" on Pilate in the sense of challenging Pilate's ability to see the "truth" (v. 38). So Pilate is now on trial!

One Main Point

Jesus came to testify to the truth, and those who belong to him will listen to his voice. As professed Christians, our vocation is to accept this truth, which will transform our lives so we can recognize Jesus' voice. In other words, our task is to be "enlightened" and Jesus is the source of our "enlightenment."


Reflections
  1. Jesus is on trial. His values are on trial. I put myself in his trial scene. When was the trial? Where am I? Who am I? What am I?
  2. How is Jesus my king?
  3. Jesus came to testify to the truth, to show us God's life. How do I belong to him? What is truth for me?

20 posted on 11/24/2012 10:19:12 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Sunday, November 25, 2012
Christ the King (Solemnity)
First Reading:
Psalm:
Second Reading:
Gospel:
Daniel 7:13-14
Psalm 93:1-2, 5
Revelation 1:5-8
John 18:33-37

Think well. Speak well. Do well. These three things, through the mercy of God, will make a man go to Heaven.

-- St. Camillus de Lellis


21 posted on 11/24/2012 10:23:19 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All



The Angelus 

The Angel of the Lord declared to Mary: 
And she conceived of the Holy Spirit. 

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen. 

Behold the handmaid of the Lord: Be it done unto me according to Thy word. 

Hail Mary . . . 

And the Word was made Flesh: And dwelt among us. 

Hail Mary . . . 


Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ. 

Let us pray: 

Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts; that we, to whom the incarnation of Christ, Thy Son, was made known by the message of an angel, may by His Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of His Resurrection, through the same Christ Our Lord.

Amen. 


22 posted on 11/24/2012 10:24:01 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King (Last Sunday of the Church Year)

The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King
Last Sunday of the Church Year

The Trinity with Mary and John the Baptist - detail from The Triumph of the Christian Faith
fresco by Raphael - Stanzo della segnatura - Vatican

Christ has received the authority and glory of a king; every people, tribe and nation will serve Him forever - Antiphon, Evening Prayer I

“If to Christ our Lord is given all power in heaven and on earth; if all men, purchased by his precious blood, are by a new right subjected to his dominion; if this power embraces all men, it must be clear that not one of our faculties is exempt from his empire. He must reign in our minds, which should assent with perfect submission and firm belief to revealed truths and to the doctrines of Christ. He must reign in our wills, which should obey the laws and precepts of God. He must reign in our hearts, which should spurn natural desires and love God above all things, and cleave to him alone. He must reign in our bodies and in our members, which should serve as instruments for the interior sanctification of our souls, or to use the words of the Apostle Paul, as instruments of justice unto God.[35] If all these truths are presented to the faithful for their consideration, they will prove a powerful incentive to perfection.”

— Pope Pius XI – Quas Primas (§34)

During the Jubilee Year observing the 16th centenary of the Council of Nicea, Pope Pius XI issued an encyclical, Quas Primas, by which he established the feast of Christ the King as a celebration of the universal Church to be observed each year on the last Sunday of the Church’s liturgical year, before the first Sunday of Advent.

In this encyclical, issued December 11, 1925, Pope Pius recounts biblical and traditional sources affirming the sovereignty of Christ, and he also explains the need for such a liturgical celebration in the entire Church in the contemporary world.

Link – http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/pius_xi/encyclicals/documents/hf_p-xi_enc_11121925_quas-primas_en.html


Canticle Revelation 4:11; 5:9-12

Worthy are you, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they existed and were created.

Worthy are you, O Lord,
to take the scroll and to open its seals,
for you were slain,
and by your blood you ransomed men for God
from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.

You have made us a kingdom and priests to our God,
and we shall reign on earth.

Worthy is the Lamb who was slain,
to receive power and riches
and wisdom and might,
and honor and glory and blessing.

 

Collect
Almighty and merciful God, who breaks the power of evil and makes all things new in your Son Jesus Christ, the King of the universe: May all in heaven and earth acclaim your glory and never cease to praise you.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, Who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Scripture Readings

Year A

First Reading: Ezekiel 34:11-12; 15-17
For thus says the Lord GOD: Behold, I, I myself will search for my sheep, and will seek them out. As a shepherd seeks out his flock when some of his sheep have been scattered abroad, so will I seek out my sheep; and I will rescue them from all places where they have been scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness.

I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, and I will make them lie down, says the Lord GOD. I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the crippled, and I will strengthen the weak, and the fat and the strong I will watch over; I will feed them in justice. As for you, my flock, thus says the Lord GOD: Behold, I judge between sheep and sheep, rams and he-goats.

Second Reading: 1 Corinthians 15:20-26,28
But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, then at His coming those who belong to Christ. Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death.

When all things are subjected to Him, then the Son Himself will also be subjected to Him who put all things under Him, that God may be everything to every one.

Gospel: Matthew 25:31-46
"When the Son of man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne. Before Him will be gathered all the nations, and He will separate them one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and He will place the sheep at His right hand, but the goats at the left. Then the King will say to those at His right hand, "Come, O blessed of 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 drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me". Then the righteous will answer Him, "Lord, when did we see thee hungry and feed thee, or thirsty and give thee drink? And when did we see thee a stranger and welcome thee, or naked and clothe thee? And when did we see thee sick or in prison and visit thee?" And the King will answer them, "Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me". Then He will say to those at His left hand, "Depart from me, you cursed, 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 no drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me". Then they also will answer, "Lord, when did we see thee hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to thee?" Then He will answer them, "Truly, I say to you, as you did it not to one of the least of these, you did it not to me". And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.

Year B
First Reading: Daniel 7:13-14
I
saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came one like a Son of Man, and He came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before Him. And to Him was given dominion and glory and kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve Him; His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and His kingdom one that shall not be destroyed.

Second Reading: Revelation 1:5-8
Jesus Christ is the faithful witness, the first-born of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, every one who pierced him; and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.

"I am the Alpha and the Omega," says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.

Gospel: John 18:33-37
Pilate entered the praetorium again and called Jesus, and said to Him, "Are you the King of the Jews?" Jesus answered, "Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to you about Me?" Pilate answered, "Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me; what have you done?" Jesus answered, "My kingship is not of this world; if my kingship were of this world, my servants would fight, that I might not be handed over to the Jews; but my kingship is not from the world." Pilate said to him, "So you are a king?" Jesus answered, "You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth. Every one who is of the truth hears my voice."

Year C
First Reading: 2 Samuel 5:1-3
In those days, all the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron, and said, "Behold, we are your bone and flesh. In times past, when Saul was king over us, it was you that led out and brought in Israel; and the LORD said to you, 'You shall be shepherd of my people Israel, and you shall be prince over Israel.'" So all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron; and King David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the LORD, and they anointed David king over Israel.

Second Reading: Colossians 1:12-20
Giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. He has delivered us from the dominion 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 first-born of all creation; 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. 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 first-born from the dead, that in everything he might be pre-eminent. For in him all the fulness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

Gospel: Luke 23:35-43
The rulers scoffed at him, saying, "He saved others; let Him save Himself, if He is the Christ of God, His Chosen One!" The soldiers also mocked Him, coming up and offering Him vinegar, and saying, "If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!" There was also an inscription over Him, "This is the King of the Jews."

One of the criminals who were hanged railed at Him, saying, "Are you not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!" But the other rebuked him, saying, "Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong." And he said, "Jesus, remember me when You come into Your kingdom." And He said to him, "Truly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise."


23 posted on 11/25/2012 7:52:53 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Saint Catherine of Alexandria, virgin and martyr

Saint Catherine of Alexandria, virgin and martyr
Optional Memorial
November 25th


Fernando Yáñez de la Almedina
Saint Catherine (detail)
1505 - 1510
Museo del Prado, Madrid

Prayer:

Glorious Saint Catherine, virgin and martyr,
help me to imitate your love of purity.
Give me strength and courage
in fighting off the temptations of the world and evil desires.

Help me to love God with my whole heart
and serve Him faithfully.

O Saint Catherine,
through your glorious martyrdom for the love of Christ,
help me to be loyal to my faith and my God
as long as I live.

 

Patron saint of young women, millers, philosophers, preachers, spinners, students and wheelwrights.

In fourth century Alexandria, there lived a Christian noblewoman and philosopher of great beauty named Catherine. When she heard that the Roman emperor Maxentius was persecuting Christians, Catherine publicly protested. Astounded by her audacity, Maxentius sent fifty famous philosophers to try to change her mind, but Catherine, with her clever arguments, converted every one of them to Christianity. Maxentius immediately ordered their execution.

The emperor then tried to persuade Catherine to become his bride. Catherine refused, saying that she was already a bride of Christ. This answer drove Maxentius into a fury, and he commanded that she be tortured on the infamous spiked wheel (later called the "Catherine wheel"). But angels are said to have thrown bolts of lightning so that the wheel broke and the spikes flew off, injuring onlookers but leaving Catherine unharmed. When she was eventually beheaded, milk, not blood, flowed from her neck, and angels carried her body up to Mount Sinai.

(Source: Carol Armstrong. Lives and Legends of the Saints. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1995.)



St. Catherine Hearts
Les Coeurs de Sainte Catherine

In northern France, there is an old custom, on St Catherine's Day heart-shaped cakes are given to young women who have reached age twenty-five and are not married to encourage them in their search for love.

You need a 1-quart heart shaped pan for this.
Butter or shortening for greasing the pan
7 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
3 eggs
2 cups sifted flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup mixed candied fruit
1/2 orange extract
1 tablespoon grated orange rind
3 tablespoons water
Optional: Confectioner's sugar

Preheat the oven to 300°F. Butter and flour the baking pan.

Cream the butter. Gradually add the sugar, mixing well; beat in the eggs, one at a time. Resift the flour with the baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.

Stir the flour into the butter mixture. Stir in the fruits, orange extract, and orange rind, and the water. Mix thoroughly. Pour the batter into the baking pan.

Bake for 20 minutes, then raise the heat to 425°F and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until a straw inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove from the pan when cool.

Optional: sprinkle with confectioner's sugar.

Yield: 1 cake


from A Continual Feast by Evelyn Birge Vitz, originally published by Harper & Row in 1995, now available in paperback from Ignatius Press.




Collect:
Almighty ever-lasting God,
who gave Saint Catherine of Alexandria to your people
as a Virgin and an invincible Martyr,
grant that through her intercession
we may be strengthened in faith and constancy
and spend ourselves without reserve
for the unity of the Church.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever. +Amen

First Reading: Revelation 21:5-7
And He who sat upon the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new." Also He said, "Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true." And He said to me, "It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the fountain of the water of life without payment. He who conquers shall have this heritage, and I will be his God and he shall be my son.

Gospel Reading: Matthew 10:28-33
And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father's will. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So every one who acknowledges Me before men, I also will acknowledge before My Father who is in heaven; but whoever denies Me before men, I also will deny before My Father who is in heaven.



24 posted on 11/25/2012 8:14:30 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Saint's Days are always superseded by the Sunday liturgy.



Information: St. Catherine of Alexandria

Feast Day: November 25
Born: 287, Alexandria, Egypt
Died: 305, Alexandria, Egypt
Major Shrine: Saint Catherine's Monastery, Mount Sinai
Patron of: Aalsum, apologists, craftsmen who work with a wheel (potters, spinners, etc.), archivists, dying people, educators, girls, jurists, knife sharpeners, lawyers, librarians, libraries, maidens, mechanics, millers, nurses, philosophers, preachers, scholars, schoolchildren, scribes, secretaries, spinsters, stenographers, students, tanners, teachers, theologians, University of Paris, unmarried girls, haberdashers, wheelwrights


25 posted on 11/25/2012 8:15:34 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Interactive Saints for Kids

St. Catherine of Alexandria

St. Catherine of Alexandria
Feast Day: November 25
Born: (around) 285 :: Died: 305

Catherine lived in early Christian times and was the daughter of a wealthy pagan couple of Alexandria, Egypt. She was a very beautiful girl whose great interest was in learning. Catherine was very good at science and public speaking.

She loved to study deep questions of philosophy and religion. She began to read about Christianity. Then one day she received a vision and decided to become a Christian.

St. Catherine was only eighteen when Emperor Maxentius began making the Christians suffer. Without fear, lovely young Catherine told him that he was being very cruel and would be punished by God.

When he spoke of the pagan gods, she very plainly showed him that they were false. Maxentius could not answer her arguments, so he sent for fifty of his best pagan philosophers.

Once again, Catherine proved the truth of her religion. All fifty philosophers were convinced that she was right and decided to become Christians. In great anger, Maxentius had every one of them killed.

Then, he tried to win her by offering her a queen's crown. When Catherine refused the crown, he had her beaten and thrown into prison.

While Maxentius was away at camp, his wife and an officer were very curious to hear this amazing Christian girl speak and went to her prison cell. All who heard her knew she spoke the truth and as a result they and two hundred soldiers of the guard were converted and became Christians.

When Maxentius found out, they were all put to death. Then he ordered Catherine to be placed on a wheel full of spikes to be tortured to death. When the wheel began to spin, it suddenly snapped in two and broke.

Finally, St. Catherine was beheaded. She has always been the patroness of Christian philosophers.


26 posted on 11/25/2012 8:18:39 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation
John
  English: Douay-Rheims Latin: Vulgata Clementina Greek NT: Byzantine/Majority Text (2000)
  John 18
33 Pilate therefore went into the hall again, and called Jesus, and said to him: Art thou the king of the Jews? Introivit ergo iterum in prætorium Pilatus : et vocavit Jesum, et dixit ei : Tu es rex Judæorum ? εισηλθεν ουν εις το πραιτωριον παλιν ο πιλατος και εφωνησεν τον ιησουν και ειπεν αυτω συ ει ο βασιλευς των ιουδαιων
34 Jesus answered: Sayest thou this thing of thyself, or have others told it thee of me? Respondit Jesus : A temetipso hoc dicis, an alii dixerunt tibi de me ? απεκριθη αυτω ο ιησους αφ εαυτου συ τουτο λεγεις η αλλοι σοι ειπον περι εμου
35 Pilate answered: Am I a Jew? Thy own nation, and the chief priests, have delivered thee up to me: what hast thou done? Respondit Pilatus : Numquid ego Judæus sum ? gens tua et pontifices tradiderunt te mihi : quid fecisti ? απεκριθη ο πιλατος μητι εγω ιουδαιος ειμι το εθνος το σον και οι αρχιερεις παρεδωκαν σε εμοι τι εποιησας
36 Jesus answered: My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would certainly strive that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now my kingdom is not from hence. Respondit Jesus : Regnum meum non est de hoc mundo. Si ex hoc mundo esset regnum meum, ministri mei utique decertarent ut non traderer Judæis : nunc autem regnum meum non est hinc. απεκριθη ιησους η βασιλεια η εμη ουκ εστιν εκ του κοσμου τουτου ει εκ του κοσμου τουτου ην η βασιλεια η εμη οι υπηρεται αν οι εμοι ηγωνιζοντο ινα μη παραδοθω τοις ιουδαιοις νυν δε η βασιλεια η εμη ουκ εστιν εντευθεν
37 Pilate therefore said to him: Art thou a king then? Jesus answered: Thou sayest that I am a king. For this was I born, and for this came I into the world; that I should give testimony to the truth. Every one that is of the truth, heareth my voice. Dixit itaque ei Pilatus : Ergo rex es tu ? Respondit Jesus : Tu dicis quia rex sum ego. Ego in hoc natus sum, et ad hoc veni in mundum, ut testimonium perhibeam veritati : omnis qui est ex veritate, audit vocem meam. ειπεν ουν αυτω ο πιλατος ουκουν βασιλευς ει συ απεκριθη [ο] ιησους συ λεγεις οτι βασιλευς ειμι εγω εγω εις τουτο γεγεννημαι και εις τουτο εληλυθα εις τον κοσμον ινα μαρτυρησω τη αληθεια πας ο ων εκ της αληθειας ακουει μου της φωνης

27 posted on 11/25/2012 11:16:16 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex
33. Then Pilate entered into the judgment hall again, and called Jesus, and said to him, Are you the King of the Jews?
34. Jesus answered him, Say you this thing of yourself, or did others tell it you of me?
35. Pilate answered, Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered you to me: what have you done?
36. Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from here.
37. Pilate therefore said to him, Are you a king then? Jesus answered, you say that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Every one that is of the truth hears my voice.

CHRYS. Pilate, wishing to rescue Him from the hatred of the c Jews, protracted the trial a long time. Then Pilate entered into the judgment hall, and called Jesus.

THEOPHYL. i.e. Apart, because he had a strong suspicion that He was innocent, and thought he could examine Him more accurately, away from the crowd: and said to Him, Are you the King of the Jews?

ALCUIN. Wherein Pilate shows that the Jews had charged Him with calling Himself King of the Jews.

CHRYS. Or Pilate had heard this by report; and as the Jews had no charge to bring forward, began to examine Him himself with respect to the things commonly reported of Him.

Jesus answered him, Say you this thing of yourself, or did others tell it you of Me?

THEOPHYL. He intimates here that Pilate was judging blindly and indiscreetly: If you say this thing of yourself, He says, bring forward proofs of My rebellion; if you have heard it from others, make regular inquiry into it.

AUG. Our Lord knew indeed both what He Himself asked, and what Pilate would answer; but He wished it to be written down n for our sakes.

CHRYS. He asks not in ignorance, but in order to draw from Pilate himself an accusation against the Jews: Pilate answered Bred, Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered you to me.

AUG. He rejects the imputation that He could have said it of Himself; Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered you to me: adding, what have you done? Whereby he shows that this charge had been brought against Him, for it is as much as to say, If you deny that you are a King, what have you done to be delivered up to me? As if it were no wonder that He should be delivered up, if He called Himself a King.

CHRYS. He then tries to bring round the mind of Pilate, not a very bad man, by proving to him, that He is not a mere man, but God, and the Son of God; and overthrowing all suspicion of His having aimed at a tyranny, which Pilate was afraid of, Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world.

AUG. This is what the good Master wished to teach us. But first it was necessary to show the falsity of the notions of both Jews and Gentiles as to His kingdom, which Pilate had heard of; as if it meant that He aimed at unlawful power; a crime punishable with death, and this kingdom were a subject of jealousy to the ruling power, and to be guarded against as likely to be hostile either to the Romans or Jews. Now if our Lord had answered immediately Pilate's question, He would have seemed to have been answering not the Jews, but the Gentiles only. But after Pilate's answer, what He says is an answer to both Gentiles and Jews: as if He said, Men, i.e. Jews and Gentiles, I hinder not your dominion in this world. What more would you have? Come by faith to the kingdom which is not of this world. For what is His kingdom, but they that believe in Him, of whom He says, you are not of the world: although He wished that they should be in the world. In the same way, here He does not say, My kingdom is not in this world; but, is not of this world. Of the world are all men, who created by God are born of the corrupt race of Adam. All that are born again in Christ, are made a kingdom not of this world. Thus hath God taken us out of the power of darkness, and translated us to the kingdom of His dear Son.

CHRYS. Or He means that He does not derive His kingdom from the same source that earthly kings do; but that He has his sovereignty from above; inasmuch as He is not mere man, but far greater and more glorious than man: If My kingdom were of this world, then would My servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews. Here He shows the weakness of an earthly kingdom, has its strength from its servants, whereas that higher kingdom is sufficient to itself, and wanting in nothing. And if His kingdom was thus the greater of the two, it follows that He was taken of His own will, and delivered up Himself.

AUG, After showing that His kingdom was not of this world, He adds, But now My kingdom is not from here. He does not say, Not here, for His kingdom is here to the end of the world, having within it the tares mixed with the wheat until the harvest. But yet it is not from here, since it is a stranger in the world.

THEOPHYL, Or He says, from here, not, here; because He reigns in the world, and carries on the government of it, and disposes all things according to His will; but His kingdom is not from below, but from above, and before all ages.

CHRYS. Heretics infer from these words that our Lord is a different person from the Creator of the world. But when He says, My kingdom is not from here, He does not deprive the world of His government and superintendence, but only shows that His government is not human and corruptible.

Pilate therefore said to Him, Are you a King then? Jesus answered, you say that I am a King.

AUG. He did not fear to confess Himself a King, but so replied as neither to deny that He was, nor yet to confess Himself a King in such sense as that His kingdom should be supposed to be of this w world. He says, you say, meaning, you being carnal say it carnally. He continues, To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that 1 should bear witness to the truth. The pronoun here, in hoc, must not be dwelt long on as if it meant, in hâc re, but shortened, as if it stood, ad hoc, natus sum, as the next words are, ad hoc veni in mundum. Wherein it is evident He alludes to His birth in the flesh not to that divine birth which never had beginning.

THEOPHYL. Or, to Pilate's question whether He w as a King our Lord answers, To this end was I born, i.e. to be a King, That I am born from a King. proves that I am a King.

CHRYS. If then He was a King by birth, He has nothing which He has not received from another. For this I came, that I should bear witness to the truth, i.e. that I should make all men believe it. We must observe how He shows His humility here: when they accused Him as a malefactor, He bore it in silence; but when He is asked of His kingdom, then He talks with Pilate, instructs him, and raises his mind to higher things. That I should bear witness to the truth shows that He had no crafty purpose in what He did.

AUG But when Christ bears witness to the truth, He bears witness to Himself; as He said above, I am the truth. But inasmuch as all men have not faith, He adds, Everyone that is of the truth hears My voice: hears, that is, with the inward ear; obeys My voice, believes Me. Every one that is of the truth, has reference to the grace by which He calls according to His purpose. For as regards the nature in which we are created, since the truth created all, all are of the truth. But it is not all to whom it is given the truth to obey the truth. For had He even said, Everyone one that hears My voice is of the truth, it still would be thought that such were of the truth, because they obeyed the truth But He does not say this, but Everyone that is of the truth hears My voice. A man then is not of the truth, because he hears His voice, but hears His voice because he is of the truth. This grace is conferred upon him by the truth.

Catena Aurea John 18
28 posted on 11/25/2012 11:16:43 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex


King of Kings

Second half 15c.
Novgorod

29 posted on 11/25/2012 11:17:30 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex
 
Catholic
Almanac:
Sunday, November 25
Liturgical Color: White

Today is the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King. In 2001, Blessed Pope John Paul II described Christ's Kingship as being for all men, not just those who follow Him. The Father offers Christ to all families, nations and generations.

30 posted on 11/25/2012 1:52:31 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
A Christian Pilgrim

Daily Readings for: November 25, 2012
(Readings on USCCB website)

Collect: Almighty ever-living God, whose will is to restore all things in your beloved Son, the King of the universe, grant, we pray, that the whole creation, set free from slavery, may render your majesty service and ceaselessly proclaim your praise. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Ordinary Time: November 25th

Solemnity of Christ the King

Old Calendar: Last Sunday after Pentecost

The Feast of Christ the King was established by Pope Pius XI in 1925 as an antidote to secularism, a way of life which leaves God out of man's thinking and living and organizes his life as if God did not exist. The feast is intended to proclaim in a striking and effective manner Christ's royalty over individuals, families, society, governments, and nations.

Today's Mass establishes the titles for Christ's royalty over men: 1) Christ is God, the Creator of the universe and hence wields a supreme power over all things; "All things were created by Him"; 2) Christ is our Redeemer, He purchased us by His precious Blood, and made us His property and possession; 3) Christ is Head of the Church, "holding in all things the primacy"; 4) God bestowed upon Christ the nations of the world as His special possession and dominion.

Today's Mass also describes the qualities of Christ's kingdom. This kingdom is: 1) supreme, extending not only to all people but also to their princes and kings; 2) universal, extending to all nations and to all places; 3) eternal, for "The Lord shall sit a King forever"; 4) spiritual, Christ's "kingdom is not of this world". — Rt. Rev. Msgr. Rudolph G. Bandas

According to the 1962 Missal of Bl. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, this feast is celebrated on the last Sunday of October.

Click here for commentary on the readings in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite.


Christ the King as Represented in the Liturgy
The liturgy is an album in which every epoch of Church history immortalizes itself. Therein, accordingly, can be found the various pictures of Christ beloved during succeeding centuries. In its pages we see pictures of Jesus suffering and in agony; we see pictures of His Sacred Heart; yet these pictures are not proper to the nature of the liturgy as such; they resemble baroque altars in a gothic church. Classic liturgy knows but one Christ: the King, radiant, majestic, and divine.

With an ever-growing desire, all Advent awaits the "coming King"; in the chants of the breviary we find repeated again and again the two expressions "King" and "is coming." On Christmas the Church would greet, not the Child of Bethlehem, but the Rex Pacificus — "the King of peace gloriously reigning." Within a fortnight, there follows a feast which belongs to the greatest of the feasts of the Church year -- the Epiphany. As in ancient times oriental monarchs visited their principalities (theophany), so the divine King appears in His city, the Church; from its sacred precincts He casts His glance over all the world....On the final feast of the Christmas cycle, the Presentation in the Temple, holy Church meets her royal Bridegroom with virginal love: "Adorn your bridal chamber, O Sion, and receive Christ your King!" The burden of the Christmas cycle may be summed up in these words: Christ the King establishes His Kingdom of light upon earth!

If we now consider the Easter cycle, the luster of Christ's royal dignity is indeed somewhat veiled by His sufferings; nevertheless, it is not the suffering Jesus who is present to the eyes of the Church as much as Christ the royal Hero and Warrior who upon the battlefield of Golgotha struggles with the mighty and dies in triumph. Even during Lent and Passiontide the Church acclaims her King. The act of homage on Palm Sunday is intensely stirring; singing psalms in festal procession we accompany our Savior singing: Gloria, laus et honor tibi sit, Rex Christe, "Glory, praise and honor be to Thee, Christ, O King!" It is true that on Good Friday the Church meditates upon the Man of Sorrows in agony upon the Cross, but at the same time, and perhaps more so, she beholds Him as King upon a royal throne. The hymn Vexilla Regis, "The royal banners forward go," is the more perfect expression of the spirit from which the Good Friday liturgy has arisen. Also characteristic is the verse from Psalm 95, Dicite in gentibus quia Dominus regnavit, to which the early Christians always added, a ligno, "Proclaim among the Gentiles: the Lord reigns from upon the tree of the Cross!" During Paschal time the Church is so occupied with her glorified Savior and Conqueror that kingship references become rarer; nevertheless, toward the end of the season we celebrate our King's triumph after completing the work of redemption, His royal enthronement on Ascension Thursday.

Neither in the time after Pentecost is the picture of Christ as King wholly absent from the liturgy. Corpus Christi is a royal festival: "Christ the King who rules the nations, come, let us adore" (Invit.). In the Greek Church the feast of the Transfiguration is the principal solemnity in honor of Christ's kingship, Summum Regem gloriae Christum adoremus (Invit.). Finally at the sunset of the ecclesiastical year, the Church awaits with burning desire the return of the King of Majesty.

We will overlook further considerations in favor of a glance at the daily Offices. How often do we not begin Matins with an act of royal homage: "The King of apostles, of martyrs, of confessors, of virgins — come, let us adore" (Invit.). Lauds is often introduced with Dominus regnavit, "The Lord is King". Christ as King is also a first consideration at the threshold of each day; for morning after morning we renew our oath of fidelity at Prime: "To the King of ages be honor and glory." Every oration is concluded through our Mediator Christ Jesus "who lives and reigns forever." Yes, age-old liturgy beholds Christ reigning as King in His basilica (etym.: "the king's house"), upon the altar as His throne.

Excerpted from The Church's Year of Grace, Pius Parsch

Things to Do:

  • Traditionally there would be a procession for Christ the King on this feastday. The Blessed Sacrament would be carried and the procession would end with a prayer of consecration to Christ the King and Benediction. Try to participate if your parish has a Christ the King procession. If not, try having one at home (minus the Blessed Sacrament).

  • Read Pope Pius XI's encyclical Quas primas (On the Feast of Christ the King) which shows that secularism is the direct denial of Christ's Kingship.

  • Learn more about secularism - read the Annual Statement of the Bishops of the United States released on November 14, 1947.

  • Being a relatively newer feast on the Liturgical calendar, there are no traditional foods for this day. Suggested ideas: a wonderful family Sunday dinner, and bake an Easter Cake or King Cake in honor of Christ the King..

  • A partial indulgence is granted to the faithful, who piously recite the Act of Dedication of the Human Race to Jesus Christ King. A plenary indulgence is granted, if it is recite publicly on the feast of our Lord Jesus Christ King.

31 posted on 11/25/2012 2:41:40 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

Meditation: John 18:33-37

Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe

“Are you the King of the Jews?” (John 18:33)

In honor of this great feast, let’s take some time to dwell on what it means that Jesus is King of all creation.

The prophets spoke about a king who would reign and govern God’s people in wisdom (Jeremiah 23:5-6). They spoke about a king who would “sit as ruler upon his throne” (Zech­ariah 6:13). They spoke about “a child” upon whose shoulder “domin­ion rests” (Isaiah 9:5).

Then, in the fullness of time, a heavenly King was born and lived among us. The angel told his mother, Mary: “The Lord God will give him the throne of David” (Luke 1:32). When this King entered Jerusalem the people shouted: “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!” (19:38).

Jesus’ kingship is so power­ful that even unbelievers like Pilate proclaimed this truth. “Behold, your king!” he cried out during Jesus’ trial (John 19:14). Then, when Jesus was raised from the dead, he taught his disciples “about the kingdom of God” (Acts 1:3). And on the day of Pente­cost, Peter announced that Jesus was now raised and had been “exalted to the right hand of God” (2:33).

Jesus is King over all creation— and we are citizens of his kingdom. As St. Paul said, God the Father has “delivered us from the power of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son” (Colos­sians 1:13). Finally, in his vision of the end of time, John saw Jesus com­ing from heaven, the “Lord of lords and king of kings” who will over­power every one of our enemies and bring us into the new Jerusalem (Revelation 17:14).

This is our King. This is the One who will return and beckon each of us: “Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom pre­pared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matthew 25:34).

“Lord Jesus, we proclaim you as the King over all creation.”

Daniel 7:13-14; Psalm 93:1-2, 5; Revelation 1:5-8

Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion

1. The great reality of Christianity is the Risen Christ reigning as King in all the glory of his victory over death. The first reading has a prophetic vision of Jesus’ kingship. “His dominion is an everlasting dominion that shall not be taken away, his kingship shall not be destroyed” (Daniel 7:14). He is king not only of “peoples, nations” but also families and our individual hearts and wills. However, how easy it is for us to go through a typical week with ourselves sitting on the throne of our hearts and wills, rather than Christ. What practical steps can you take to ensure that Christ has a more prominent place in your thoughts and actions?

2. The Responsorial Psalm speaks of the splendor and strength of our king. It goes on to say that he is worthy of our trust (Psalm 93:1-2). Share about any areas in your life where your trust in Christ is weaker than it should be. How can you increase your trust in Christ and open yourself more to Christ’s influence and power over these areas?

3. In the second reading, St. John tells us that our king “is coming amid the clouds,” and that he “loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood” shed on the cross. What practical steps can you take to share this great love of God with your family and with others during the grace-filled Advent season?

4. Also in the second reading we hear that Christ “shares” his powers with us for the ministry of salvation: we are all “priests for his God and Father.” He has generously placed his power into our fragile hands! Can you identify any people that need to come to know Christ and his great love for them? What can you do to help bring them to your King?

5. In the Gospel, Christ asserts that his kingship bears no relation with earthly kings: “My kingdom does not belong to this world.” We know that even Christ’s disciples misunderstood the nature of his kingship, often confusing it with earthly power and with lording that power over others. Christ’s kingdom is one of service to others. What are some areas of service to others that the Lord may be calling you to do during Advent?

6. In the meditation, we hear these words: “Jesus is King over all creation—and we are citizens of his kingdom.” What do these words mean to you? As King over all creation, and your king, what can you do to enthrone Jesus over your life and make him truly the center of your life?

7. Take some time now to pray and ask for the grace to give your life completely to Jesus as your Lord, Savior, and King. Use the prayer at the end of the meditation as the starting point.


32 posted on 11/25/2012 2:49:53 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/2962746/posts?page=32#32

Source: The Word Among Us

33 posted on 11/25/2012 2:57:25 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
A Christian Pilgrim

EVERY ONE WHO IS OF THE TRUTH HEARS MY VOICE

(A biblical refection on the solemnity of OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, UNIVERSAL KING – Sunday, 25 November 2012) 

Gospel Reading: John 18:33-37 

First Reading: Dan 7:13-14; Psalms: Ps 93:1-2,5; Second Reading: Rev 1:5-8 

The Scripture Text

Pilate entered the praetorium again and called Jesus, and said to Him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered, “Do you say this of your own accord, or did others saqy it to you about Me?” Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed You over to me; what have You done?” Jesus answered, “My kingship is not of this world; if My kingship were of this world, My servants would fight, that I might not be handed over to the Jews; but My kingship is not from the world.” Pilate said to Him, “So you are a King?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a King. For this I was born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth. Every one who is of the truth hears My voice.” (Jn 18:33-37 RSV) 

When asked by Pilate. “Are you the King of the Jews?”, Jesus replied that He was a King but immediately added that His Kingdom was not of this world (Jn 18:33,36). Jesus entered into His Kingdom and into His glory when the Father raised Him from the dead, seated Him at His right hand in heaven, and conferred on Him all sovereignty, authority, power, kingship and glory. Christ’s Kingdom, unlike the transient kingdoms of this world, will never pass away. It is immovable, not subject to corruption, decay or conquest.

At the end of time, Jesus will return in glory. Then we shall see Him glorious, majestic, and powerful. His faithful servants shall be joined to Him forever. At that time, all of creation will be subjected to His reign; all will be fulfilled and complete in Him.

The foundation of Jesus’ Kingdom is truth. Jesus bore witness to the truth before Pilate: “For this I was born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth” (Jn 18:37). He witnessed to the truth of the eternal reality that is God Himself – God who is holy, pure and good.

In turn, Jesus’ disciples witness to the eternal reality of Christ by proclaiming that He is a King of all creation; that all can enter His Kingdom by bowing down before the holiness and glory of God. They witness by accepting Christ’s rule in their lives and serving Him and His people, in that way advancing God’s Kingdom. Until He comes again, Christ has empowered His disciples to build His Kingdom here on earth. As we work to liberate the weak and the powerless, the oppressed and the exploited, Christ’s Kingdom of justice, peace and love is built up among us.

Pope John Paul II taught about our share in the kingship of Christ: “Because the lay faithful belong to Christ, Lord and King of the universe, they share in His kingly ministry and are called by Him to spread the Kingdom in history. They exercise their kingship as Christians, above all in the spiritual combat in which they seek to overcome in themselves the kingdom of sin, and then to make a gift of themselves so as to serve, in justice and in charity, Jesus who is Himself present in all His brothers and sisters, above all in the very least (Christifideles Laici, 14).

Short Prayer: Jesus Christ, King of heaven and earth, I do love You, and I want to love you more and more each day. You are my heart’s deepest desire. I consecrate myself to you today. Come, my King, and make me into the person you want me to be. Amen.


34 posted on 11/25/2012 3:07:57 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
A Christian Pilgrim

KINGSHIP DRAMA

(A biblical refection on the solemnity of OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, UNIVERSAL KING – Sunday, 25 November 2012) 

First Reading: Dan 7:13-14; Psalms: Ps 93:1-2,5; Second Reading: Rev 1:5-8; Gospel Reading: Jn 18:33-37 

In 1956 actor Yul Brynner won an Academy Award for his role as the bald autocratic King of Siam in the movie The King and I. The film was based on the musical written by Rodgers and Hammerstein for Broadway, where Brynner also played the part for a record number of times.

In this musical, the King of Siam imports a British governess to his exotic kingdom to educate his children. At the start they have frequent cultural clashes, but in the end the king and the governess form a true friendship.

Today we recall another king. He is not the king of some country like Siam, but the King of the whole universe – He is the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

In the first reading from the prophet Daniel, our Lord is envisioned as the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven to receive dominion, glory and kingship. In the Gospel from John, Jesus stands trial and is questioned about His kingship by Pilate.

Fr. George MacRae points out in his commentary, Invitation to John, how the evangelist uses theatre techniques to present the drama of Christ’s passion. The stage is set by John as Pilate’s praetorium. The principal actors are Jesus and Pilate.

As John’s Passion Play unfolds, the theme of Christ’s kingship emerges as the central plot. It is the focal point of Pilate’s questions, the cause of our Lord’s mock coronation by the soldiers and the substance of the inscription placed on His cross – Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews.

As a playwright, John uses irony to great effect. For example, although Jesus is brought to trial before Pilate, it is really Pilate who is being judged. Moreover, although Pilate hands Him over to the lifted up on the cross in ignominy, he sets the stage for Jesus to be lifted up in later glory.

We can’t watch good drama without getting involved. This is all the more true of John’s Passion Play since it is also divinely inspired. Today we stand on the stage in place of Pilate to ask Jesus: “Are you really a King?” And Jesus answers us the same way He did Pilate: “Yes, I am a King. But My Kingdom is not of this world.”

In other words, His Kingdom does not depend on military might, economic strength or political power. It is a spiritual Kingdom that depends on faith, prayer and good works. It is not a kingdom that seeks to increase its wealth, expand its borders or inflate its image. It is a Kingdom that promotes peace where there is violence, justice where there is exploitation and freedom where there is oppression.

Will we miss our chance as Pilate did and not take Christ’s kingship seriously? Or will we acknowledge Him as King and join in His causes to protect human rights, relieve poverty and care for the unwanted?

Note: Taken from Albert Cylwicki, CSB, HIS WORD RESOUNDS, Makati, Philippines: St. Paul Publications, 1991, pages 197-198.


35 posted on 11/25/2012 3:10:14 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
 
Marriage = One Man and One Woman
Til' Death Do Us Part

Daily Marriage Tip for November 25, 2012:

“I am the Alpha and the Omega.” (Rev 1:8) Just as God is the Beginning and the End, so your marriage has a beginning (the marriage vows) and an end (death). What’s important is in the middle. Make the middle meaningful today.  


36 posted on 11/25/2012 3:15:19 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Sunday Scripture Study

The Solemnity of Christ the King
(Cycle B)

November 25, 2012

Click here for USCCB readings

Opening Prayer  

First Reading: Daniel 7:13-14

Psalm: 93:1-2,5

Second Reading: Revelation 1:5-8

Gospel Reading: John 18: 33b-37

  • Instituted by Pope Pius XI in 1926, the Solemnity of Christ the King was originally celebrated on the last Sunday in October to foster the awareness of Christ’s dominion over all people and to establish peace among nations. After Vatican Council II the feast was transferred to the last Sunday of the Liturgical year, the Sunday before Advent, on which the human race is consecrated to the Sacred Heart through the Litany of the Sacred Heart and a prayer recited before the Blessed Sacrament.
  • In this Sunday’s Gospel reading, Jesus is brought before Pontius Pilate, the procurator (or prefect) of Judea by the Jewish leaders who, out of jealousy, sought to destroy Jesus.
  • Of all the Gospel accounts, St. John’s gospel gives the longest and fullest account of Jesus’ trial before Pilate, emphasizing the majesty of Christ as the Messianic King.
  • Because he has no interest in becoming embroiled in the religious controversies of the Jews or anybody else, Pilate’s idea of kingship is completely different from that of Jesus. Much like the crowds who wanted to proclaim Jesus a “bread king” (John 6:15), Pilate’s perspective is a worldly one. Even when given a subtle challenge by Jesus to recognize the truth that is standing right before him (verse 37), Pilate delivers his famous rejoinder, “What is truth?” (verse 38)

 

QUESTIONS:

  • What reason did the Jewish leaders give Pilate for bringing Jesus to him (verses 33-34)? Why would he take this seriously? How are his fears like those of the Jewish leaders in John 11:48?
  • What does Jesus tell Pilate about his kingdom (verses 36-37)? Who is included in it? What do you think Pilate meant by his concerns in verse 38? In his pursuit of “truth,” is Pilate trying to absolve himself, or Jesus? Why do you think so?
  • Since both Peter (John 13:36-38, 18:15-18, 25-27) and Pilate caved into pressure, why do we tend to scorn Pilate, but honor Peter? Do you see any of Pilate’s qualities in yourself?
  • How does Jesus imply that his kingship is exercised? What do you think it means for one who “belongs to the truth” to “listen to my voice”?
  • Where do you find Jesus’ kingdom (Philippians 3:20; Colossians 1:13-14; Matthew 5:3-10)? How is Jesus your king?

Catechism of the Catholic Church: §§ 786, 215-217, 543-553, 557-560, 2471-2472, 908-913

 

“The kingdom of God does not mean food or drink but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Romans 14:17). Truth and justice, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. That is the kingdom of Christ: the divine activity which saves men and which will reach its culmination when history ends and the Lord comes from the heights of paradise finally to judge men. –St. Josemaria Escriva


37 posted on 11/25/2012 3:50:17 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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How Jesus Describes the Kingdom of Heaven
Pastor’s Column
November 25, 2012
 
“My kingdom does not belong to this world.”
                                                                   (from John 18)
          What is Jesus’ Kingdom like? Although “through him all things were created,” (Colossians 1), our world appears more to be a mirror-opposite of the kingdom of heaven. If you have any doubts about this, read the beatitudes (in Matthew 5 and Luke 6) closely, for they describe a world that looks very different from the one we inhabit at present. 
 
          We all want to go to heaven, but how does Jesus describe it again? It some respects it almost sounds like an alien world! How can we prepare ourselves? What are the greatest assets we will wish to possess in our spirit and our lives before God when we leave this world? If we could only understand what will make us most happy in heaven, we would thank God when these kinds of trials are a part of our earthly life. What are some of those “beatitudes” (meaning “blesseds”) from Matthew 5 again? 
 
 
  • Those who have had much sorrow and mourning here will be comforted there and will be called blessed.
  • The Kingdom of heaven will actually belong to the ones who were poorest in spirit (detached from things in poverty or in their heart).
  •   Peacemakers (as opposed to those who are war-mongers or pick fights with people or cause trouble) will be the ones called the “children of God” there.
  • Those who will “see God” most clearly and purely will be the clean of heart. This is a virtue not much valued now, but it will be highly treasured in the new world which is coming!
  •  In heaven, those who have shown mercy will receive mercy. Am I merciful in my day-to-day living?
  • Those who were hungry and thirsty for righteousness will be filled to overflowing with these gifts! What do I hunger and thirst for really?
  • Those who will receive a “great reward in heaven” will have experienced what we would prefer most to avoid here: being slandered, insulted, and having had any and all kinds of evils done to us for the sake of Christ. 
          On this Solemnity of Christ the King, it is indeed ironic that many of these least popular character traits in this world will be the most highly valued in the world to come.

Father Gary


38 posted on 11/25/2012 4:05:24 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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St. Paul Center blog

A Royal Truth: Scott Hahn reflects on the Solemnity of Christ the King

Posted by Dr. Scott Hahn on 11.23.12 |

 
Christ the King

What’s the truth Jesus comes to bear witness to in this last Gospel of the Church’s year?

It’s the truth that in Jesus, God keeps the promise He made to David - of an everlasting kingdom, of an heir who would be His Son, “the first born, highest of the kings of the earth” (see 2 Samuel 7:12-16; Psalm 89:27-38).

Today’s Second Reading, taken from the Book of Revelation, quotes these promises and celebrates Jesus as “the faithful witness.” The reading hearkens back to Isaiah’s prophecy that the Messiah would “witness to the peoples” that God is renewing His “everlasting covenant” with David (see Isaiah 55:3-5).

But as Jesus tells Pilate, there’s far more going on here than the restoration of a temporal monarchy. In the Revelation reading, Jesus calls Himself “the Alpha and the Omega,” the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet. He’s applying to Himself a description that God uses to describe Himself in the Old Testament - the first and the last, the One Who calls forth all generations (see Isaiah 41:4; 44:6; 48:12).

Readings:
Daniel 7:13-14
Psalm 93:1-2,5
Revelation 1:5-8
John 18:33-37

“He has made the world,” today’s Psalm cries, and His dominion is over all creation (see also John 1:3; Colossians 1:16-17). In the vision of Daniel we hear in today’s First Reading, He comes on “the clouds of heaven” - another sign of His divinity - to be given “glory and kingship” forever over all nations and peoples.

Christ is King and His Kingdom, while not of this world, exists in this world in the Church. We are a royal people. We know we have been loved by Him and freed by His blood and transformed into “a Kingdom, priests for His God and Father” (see also Exodus 19:6; 1 Peter 2:9).

As a priestly people, we share in His sacrifice and in His witness to God’s everlasting covenant. We belong to His truth and listen to His voice, waiting for Him to come again amid the clouds.


39 posted on 11/25/2012 4:13:16 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Christ the King -- a Faithful Witness
 

Christ the King of the Universe

Sunday Word: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/112512.cfm



Dn 7: 13-14
Rev 1: 5-8
Jn 18: 33-37

A most famous quote often used but nonetheless so truthful is a simple observation about the effects of power. Lord Acton of England in the 19th century wrote: "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men."

Unfortunately, history has often shown this to be true. Think of the Roman Emperors, many of whom thought of themselves as divine. The Adolf Hitler's and the Napoleon's who seized power and wielded it through force and fear rather than through a benefit for the common good. Nor can we hide the history of our own Papacy, particularly those of the 1600’s, whose personal morality was anything but stellar: Alexander VI and Leo X to name just two. Earthly power and prestige can be used for good, surely, but when invested too heavily in one person, its power to corrupt is almost inevitable.

Hitler imagined that he would ultimately take over the world and the Third Reich would rule for a thousand years with the power of the super-race. Well, he's gone and we are still here. Long gone are also Roman Emperors who demanded the worship of their citizens.

So, this Sunday, the last week of our liturgical year, we hear of a potentially corruptible title:  Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. “King of the Universe” is quite a claim!  It is a claim, however, that can only be made by God himself whose power is beyond any earthly force. It is absolute power for which there is no equal. In the Gospel (Jn 18: 33-37) for this Sunday we see a clash of powers between the weak but cunning Pontius Pilate and the mighty Jesus who is far more than he appears on the surface.

The claim for Kingship is the center of the contrast between them. Pilate asks, perhaps with some hesitation: “Are you the King of the Jews?” Such a possibility would strike fear in the heart of Pilate. It would be a challenge to his own efforts to keep the Pax Romana in this backwater location of the Roman Empire. 

Jesus’ response puzzles Pilate: “My kingdom does not belong to this world . . .” Pilate cannot imagine another “kingdom” other than an earthly one so he seems to assume that Jesus suffers from a sad case of delusional thinking. “Then, you are a King?” Pilate states sarcastically. 

The context of the brief inquiry is telling as well.  Here Jesus stands before the authority of Rome. Arrested by the Chief Priests and soldiers about to be scourged and condemned to death.  Seemingly helpless and pitiful he truly stands as the book of Revelation tells us in our second reading as the: “. . . faithful witness . . . who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, who has made us into a kingdom . . .” Jesus’ kingdom is not one for subjects but for faithful disciples who are called by the witness of their own lives to bear witness to a kingdom of “. . . truth and life, a kingdom of holiness and grace, a kingdom of justice, love and peace . . .” (Preface for Christ the King). Jesus’ kingdom is beyond space and time and unlike ancient Rome or any earthly power, his kingdom will never end and its power has no limits. This power does not corrupt but rather brings one to conversion of heart and life.

For those of us who live in this amazing democracy, we shun any allusion to royalty or slavish submission.  We have a President, not a King or Queen. We have a balance of power between three branches of government. We have equal rights before law and a system, which at its best, will permit a healthy freedom.  Yet, clearly our challenge is to incorporate the morality and values of the spiritual and moral kingdom that Christ brings.  Like his clash with Pilate, however, we well know there might be a price to pay in our pursuit to be faithful to the truth as Christ himself bore witness on our behalf.

What “kingdom” is pulling you?  What power is ruling over your life? We live in two worlds in a sense – this life and our hope for the next.  Yet, if we truly believe Christ is King of the Universe, then our Eucharistic celebrations become a place to stand in adoration and gratitude that his kingdom will not pass away. 
Almighty, ever-living God
whose will is to restore all things
in your beloved Son, the King of the universe,
grant, we pray, that the whole creation,
set free from slavery,
may render your majesty service
and ceaselessly proclaim your praise.

(Collect for Solemnity)

Fr. Tim


40 posted on 11/25/2012 4:22:13 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Insight Scoop

Christ the King deserves our praise, obedience, and adoration

A Scriptural Reflection on the Readings for Sunday, November 25, 2012, The Solemnity of Christ the King | Carl E. Olson

Readings:
• Dan 7:13-14
• Ps 93:1, 1-2, 5
• Rev 1:5-8
• Jn 18:33b-37

“Would Jesus feel at home among the opulence of The Vatican?” The question was put to me recently after I’d written defending the Church’s ownership of cathedrals, churches, and artwork.

My article, in turn, was in response to remarks made by a professional baseball player—a fallen away Catholic, it turns out—who had visited the Sistine Chapel and later remarked to a reporter: “They could sell all those things, auction them off and probably feed half that world's starving population. There is that much wealth stored in the Sistine Chapel. For it just to be sitting there I think is a crime.”

There are numerous flaws with such myopic thinking, including the athlete failing to recognize that no other Christian group in the world operates as many charitable organizations, orphanages, schools, hospitals, hospices, and shelters as does the Catholic Church. And what about his multi-million dollar contract, paid for by fans coming to watch grown men throw and hit baseballs in huge, expensive stadiums?

Yet, if the stadiums and the teams were sold, what then? Are sporting events evil? Is it wrong to make a good living being an athlete? Of course not.

Which brings up a point directly related to this great feast day: cathedrals, churches, and works of art were created over the course of many centuries as essential features of the Church's worship of Jesus Christ, who is the King of kings. Today’s reading from the opening chapter of The Apocalypse describes Jesus as “the firstborn of the dead and ruler of the kings of the earth.” If Jesus really is God, he deserves our praise; if he is King of all, he deserves our obedience; if he is the Alpha and Omega, he deserves our adoration.

Sacrosanctum concilium, Vatican II’s Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, observed that “the fine arts are considered to rank among the noblest activities of man's genius … These arts, by their very nature, are oriented toward the infinite beauty of God which they attempt in some way to portray by the work of human hands; they achieve their purpose of redounding to God's praise and glory in proportion as they are directed the more exclusively to the single aim of turning men's minds devoutly toward God.” (par 122). Man was created out of God’s overflowing love, and man returns that love by expressing his love for the Lord, who is king and “robed in majesty,” through prayers, words, songs, art, and architecture.

Ultimately, the cathedrals and statues and artwork belong to the King. This is all the more meaningful when considering that the Eucharist—the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ—is kept in the houses of God. Sure, the Eucharist could be kept in a closet or a gymnasium, but is that any way to show respect and love for the King? 

Jesus told Pilate, “My kingdom does not belong to this world.” Some Christians have mistakenly thought this means they should have no part of churches, vestments and artwork. But it should be understood in light of the Incarnation, which Jesus referred to a moment later, saying, “You say I am a king. For this I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth.”

The Son was not of this world, yet he came into the world. He had no beginning, but was born a babe in a manger. He was all-powerful, yet suffered and died. And when he rose from the dead and ascended to the Father, he did not shed his humanity. He is standing in heaven—the Lamb, human and divine, “as though it had been slain” (Rev. 5:6)—surrounded by cherubim and elders singing ceaseless praise.

In other words, Christ’s Kingdom does not belong to the world, but his Church—the “seed and beginning of this kingdom” (CCC 567)—is in the world. And it is growing, mysteriously, not through bloodshed, tyranny, or coercion but through the body and blood of the King, through truth, and through conversion.

(This "Opening the Word" column originally appeared in the November 22, 2009, edition of Our Sunday Visitor newspaper.)


41 posted on 11/25/2012 4:39:04 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Regnum Christi

A Question of Kingdoms
| SPIRITUAL LIFE | SPIRITUALITY
Solemnity of Christ the King

Father Edward Hopkins, LC

John 18:33b-37

Pilate said to Jesus, "Are you the King of the Jews?" Jesus answered, "Do you say this on your own or have others told you about me?" Pilate answered, "I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests handed you over to me. What have you done?" Jesus answered, "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." So Pilate said to him, "Then you are a king?" Jesus answered, "You say I am a king. For this I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice."

Introductory Prayer: Dear Jesus, I believe that you are truth itself; that you are the foundation of all moral judgments. I trust that you really care for me and give me the light to see the needs of others. I love you, Lord, and show it now with my desire to pray.

Petition: Make your truth my life, Lord!

1. Asking My Own Questions: Every day we form countless judgments. Often they seem based more on what others have said, than on what we know. We are often told what to think by the media, government and even coworkers. Pilate was one of those whose judgment was based on what others had said. His question to Jesus was that of a functionary; not of someone sincerely seeking the truth. Jesus sensed this weakness and confronted him. Pilate’s excuse was that he was not Jewish, so how could he hope to understand? I will be judged one day on how I judged. How fair, how sincere and really how interested am I in others? Do I treat those in my life as though I really cared?

2. Jesus Stands above This World: Pilate’s verbalized thoughts and the accusations of the Sanhedrin against Jesus come from this world. It is a world where people, once accused, are already judged; where most judgments remain hidden but still assassinate the person through actions and omissions; where “what others think of you” seems to matter most. Jesus does not belong to the ways of human respect. Nor can human respect even begin to judge him. He answers to God alone, just as he lives only to please his Father. Do I belong to this world? What kind of grip does this world have on me? How do its judgments affect my behavior?

3. Belonging to the Kingdom of Truth: What is relative can never judge what is absolute, just as changing seasons do not define human nature. Only a judgment from what is absolute can determine real values for all. Just before being elected Pope, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger exposed the world’s imposition of subjective personal values, calling it a “a dictatorship of relativism that does not recognize anything as definitive and whose ultimate goal consists solely of one´s own ego and desires” (Homily, April 18, 2005). In the same homily he juxtaposed this relativistic “truth” to friendship with Christ. Real friendship with Christ is our single guiding light, and it requires that we subject to him all other guides: our ego, our own feelings and our selfish desires. His ways, love and truth replace self-seeking. In which kingdom do I live?

Conversation with Christ: Lord Jesus, you are my king and your kingdom is truth. Form my mind to know all things in relation to you. Form my heart to judge all people in relation to your love. Free me from the deceptions of pride, human respect and self-love. May only your love reign in my heart!


Resolution:This week I will reject all internal judgments of others that are based on hearsay. I will replace them with prayers for those persons, giving them the benefit of the doubt and entrusting them to the care of the King.


42 posted on 11/25/2012 5:36:03 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

Christ the King

by Food For Thought on November 25, 2012 · 

Responsorial Psalm Ps 93:1, 1-2, 5

Reading 2 Rv 1:5-8

Gospel Jn 18:33b-37

Today’s feast is quite unique. We proclaim Christ as our King. Most of the kings we read about in history are not ideal leaders. Majority of them are even tyrants. As the British statesman, Lord Acton puts it, “Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

Today’s only kings are ceremonial figures such as the king of England or the king of Sweden. Monarchy and kingdoms ruled by kings with absolute power as a political system are a thing of the past.

However, we continue to cherish the notion of king itself, purified of its political meaning of absolute power. Today, we speak of kings and queens in the context of beauty pageant and fiestas, or to signify excellence in beauty or quality of certain products. It is as if we could not give up the idea that somehow, when someone has reached a certain level of excellence, he is considered a king. In other words, we have transposed the notion of royalty from politics to economics, finance, entertainment, fashion, sports, etc. In all these areas of life, we give the title king spontaneously to a person who is supreme, or highly successful in some field or to something supreme in its class.

The reason for the obstinate use of the term “king,” when there are no more kings around, is probably that deep inside our hearts, we are still searching for a real king – that is, for someone, who would finally deserve to be our king, because precisely he would be “supreme in his class,” – a real role model. We yearn for someone we could trust absolutely. We long for a king, who would wield absolute power without ever abusing it. In other words, we dream of a man who would be utterly trustworthy, who would be utterly loving, wise, understanding, and good.

Today’s Gospel reading shows forth such a man. He is Jesus of Nazareth. He fulfills all the conditions of an ideal king.

First of all, he is king by birth and origin, being the very Son of God.

Secondly, he can never be dethroned or impeached, since he now reigns at the right hand of God forever.

Thirdly, his power can never be tyrannical, because it is not imposed; it is merely proposed, not imposed to anyone who wants to accept it freely.

Fourthly, his power is based only on self-sacrificial love.

Consequently, this king has no armed forces, no political party, no propaganda machine, no Department of Dirty Tricks, no police, no judiciary, and no prison. His only weapon, if we may call it such, is truth – that is, the revelation of what God is, a loving Father for all of mankind. As Jesus himself says, “The reason I was born, the reason why I came into the world, is to testify to the truth.” And because of this, he can only appeal to those who are interested in the truth – those, who have committed their lives to honesty in all its forms, to righteousness, to fidelity. That is why Jesus says, “Anyone committed to the truth hears my voice.”

When Jesus was saying these words, he was standing in judgment before Pontius Pilate, looking in Pilate’s eyes, appealing for him to choose the truth. Pilate did not. Instead of listening to the voice of his conscience, the voice of truth, he chose to silence Jesus and his
conscience by condemning Jesus to death. But Jesus rose from the dead and now speaks to each one of us. And each one of us must decide for himself or herself whether or not Jesus is his or her king.

Now, that is a crucial decision, and a difficult one. For Jesus warns us, “My kingdom is not of this world.” Naturally, Jesus wants to reign in this world, that is, in every area of life (business,
politics, social affairs, education, entertainment, sports, etc.). But he wants to reign through our free acceptance of his values, not through the means of the world (money, power, fame, violence, hatred, lust, and oppression). To choose him as my king means that we give up making ourselves the center of things and that, instead, we make him the center of things. Do I want him to be my king day after day, at work, in my family, at school, in my recreational activities, in my
business? Today Jesus is looking straight into my eyes and asking me, “Do you want me to be your king?” What shall I answer him?

Each one of us is in the process of deciding whether we’ll accept God’s love or reject it. Each one of us is in the process of deciding whether we’ll live happily with God forever and ever. The choice is yours. How will your story end?


43 posted on 11/25/2012 5:49:19 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Christ the King

Christ the King

by Marcellino D'Ambrosio, Ph.D. on November 23, 2012 ·
 
 

But despite all their machinations, pretensions, and self-glorifying monuments, the great rulers of the earth all proved mortal like anybody else. The had their day in the sun only to disappear.  Their kingdoms, too, ultimately passed away, leaving abundant ruins for generations of tourists and archeologists to explore.

There is another thing that these great ones of the earth had in common–they jealously guarded their glory, sharing it with no one.  Their ascent to the pinnacle of power was made over the backs of others, and they did not hesitate to eliminate any and all rivals.

This Sunday’s feast celebrates the fact that there is one who is remarkably different.  He came to serve all, even his enemies.  He truly was a Son of Man, with a vulnerable human nature.  But he was also truly Son of God.  Not in some mythological sense, like the Pharaohs, or the wishful-thinking sense, like the Caesars, but really and truly, the Immortal, the Eternal, taking the form of a mortal man in a specific time in history.

Rather than executing his opponents, he forgave them.  Rather than dominating his subjects, he exalted them.  He even called them not servants, but friends, and bestowed on them a share in his own priesthood and kingship.  Though he died, like other kings, it was for a different purpose than Augustus in his bed or Hitler in his bunker.  He died willingly to save his people, and his death was not a result of a battle lost or a plan gone awry, but of a glorious victory planned before the world began.

He rose in glory, which can’t be said for the rest of them.  And at his heavenly coronation, when he ascended to his Father, he was given what all the rest lusted for–a worldwide dominion that will not pass away.

But the world goes on oblivious, with corporate executives and statesmen still jockeying for position, exalting themselves at the expense of others.  Still others crowd the cover of People magazine competing for other glories like the King of Rock’n roll.

The true King, however, is biding his time.  He will return and suddenly things will be seen as they truly are.  His coming will sweep away ambition, vanity, and pretensions, and much of what now appears important will look very empty.  No longer will oppression be allowed to stand; the innocent will finally be liberated from those who victimize them.

This dominion will truly be universal–there will be nowhere left where he is not recognized as Who He is, though in some quarters, that acknowledgment will be made with consternation and gloom.

For his coming means doom. . . judgment for those who have for so long resisted him.  They will be allowed, of course, to cling to the evil that they have chosen, and hold it close to themselves for all eternity.  But they may no longer afflict others with it.

This judgment, this kingdom, will have the last word.  No election will overturn it in four years or four million years.  There is no one stronger who can rest the dominion from his Almighty hand.

The Church instituted this feast of Christ the King during bleak days, when fascist and communist clouds were darkening the earth with their ominous shadow.  The feast serves as a reminder to us that we know the end of the story and should not be fooled by the braggarts who strut and the bullies who gloat.  They’ll be gone soon.  And He’ll be here soon.  How soon no one knows.


44 posted on 11/25/2012 5:52:46 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
One Bread, One Body

One Bread, One Body

 


<< Sunday, November 25, 2012 >> Christ the King
 
Daniel 7:13-14
Revelation 1:5-8

View Readings
Psalm 93:1-2, 5
John 18:33-37

 

"ON YOUR OWN"

 
"Are you saying this on your own, or have others been telling you about Me?" —John 18:34
 

Jesus was put to death on the cross because He claimed to be the King of the Jews. Since that was Jesus' crime, it was inscribed in Hebrew, Latin, and Greek above His head on the cross (Jn 19:19-20).

On the feast of Christ the King, are you saying "on your own" (Jn 18:34) that Jesus is King or are you just observing the traditions of the Church by reading, praying, and singing "King-things" out of the missalette or songbook? If you are accepting "on your own" that Jesus is the King, you will be rejected and persecuted as He was. Because Jesus is not just a king but the King of kings (see Rv 1:5), He and His followers are a threat to all other kings and rulers, unless these acknowledge His supremacy. Therefore, He was crucified, and His subjects share in His sufferings (see Phil 3:10).

To celebrate today's feast day without hypocrisy, to truly accept Jesus as King, you must love Him enough to live and die for Him by giving everything to purchase the precious pearl of His kingdom (Mt 13:44, 46). Will you celebrate Christ the King on your own, or will you merely mouth what others tell you to say?

 
Prayer: King Jesus, I live and die for love of You alone.
Promise: "His dominion is an everlasting dominion that shall not be taken away, His kingship shall not be destroyed." —Dn 7:14
Praise: "Sing praise to our King, sing praise. For the King of all the earth is God, sing praise" (Ps 47:7-8). Praise Jesus, enthroned forever as King!

45 posted on 11/25/2012 5:57:49 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

46 posted on 11/25/2012 5:58:56 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

http://resources.sainteds.com/showmedia.asp?media=../sermons/homily/2012-11-25-Homily%20Fr%20Gary.mp3&ExtraInfo=0&BaseDir=../sermons/homily


47 posted on 12/02/2012 9:29:32 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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