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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The History of the Feast Day of Christ the King

By Juan Rodriguez - DHT

The feast day of Christ the King is celebrated four Sundays after the feast day of All Saints. The celebration was created during 1928 to promote the sovereignty of Christ as triumphant over all nations. Several liturgical celebrations of Christ's Kingship are observed during the procession of Palm Sunday as well as the feast day of the Ascension.

It is not certain whether this feast day began earlier in 1925. Historians believe that the feast may have begun during the 1880's by those who responded against the growth of secularization of the state. The petition was made to Pope Pius XI by sixty-nine Cardinals in 1922 during the Eucharistic Congress in Rome. Year after year, the request increased in numbers.

The feast day was accepted and promoted in an encyclical by the Pope, as he linked the new feast day with an annual consecration of all humanity to the Sacred Heart.

Originally, the feast day was celebrated on the last Sunday of October. This was to foster the awareness of all Catholic Christians, whether young or old, about Christ's dominion over all His people, while at the same time it fostered peace in all nations. After Vatican II, it was transferred from October to the last Sunday before Advent, so that the whole human race would consecrate themselves to the Sacred Heart. This was done before the Blessed Sacrament, during which the Litany of the Sacred Heart was recited.

What does it mean for youth and young adults today?

It means that Jesus Christ is Lord and Master of our lives. We acknowledge Jesus as King before all the nations. His Father in Heaven anointed Jesus Eternal Priest and Universal King. Jesus, being High Priest, offered His life on the Cross to redeem us by His Sacrifice. He is our King who has dominion over all the nations, over all creation, and presents to His Father a Kingdom of Truth, Holiness, and Justice. We should proclaim the news to our friends, neighbors, family, and loved ones.

May the youth of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church recognize the Majesty and Glory of Christ as King of our lives! Amen.

Act of Dedication of the Human Race to Jesus Christ King

Most sweet Jesus, Redeemer of the human race, look down upon us humbly prostrate before You. We are Yours, and Yours we wish to be; but to be more surely united with You, behold, each one of us freely consecrates himself today to Your Most Sacred Heart.

Many indeed have never known You; many, too, despising Your precepts, have rejected You. Have mercy on them all, most merciful Jesus, and draw them to Your Sacred Heart.

Be king, O Lord, not only of the faithful who have never forsaken You, but also of the prodigal children who have abandoned You; grant that they may quickly return to their Father’s house, lest they die of wretchedness and hunger.

Be king of those who are deceived by erroneous opinions, or whom discord keeps aloof, and call them to harbor of truth and the unity of faith, so that soon there may be but flock and one Shepherd.

Grant, O Lord, to Your Church assurance of freedom and immunity from harm; give tranquility of order to all nations; make the earth resound from pole to pole with one cry: Praise to the divine Heart that wrought our salvation; to it be glory and honor for ever. Amen.

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


Anonymous Anonymous said...

My memory of Christ the King celebration is a joyous yet solemn procession. In our home the altar in the master bedroom is the statue of Christ the King and we will position by the front window for the procession. What is a ritual, feast for me as a child has grown into a life affirming devotion to my faith.

11:43 AM  
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