English Español Mary Immaculate
Catholic Church / Pacoima, CA

Inherit the Kingdom

Our Lord Jesus Christ King of the Universe

“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.” Matthew 25:35-36

Perhaps it is important to remember that while the image of Christ as King has been known throughout Christianity, this feast was founded in 1925 as a reaction and a response to growing secularism, communism, and atheism that were becoming prevalent after World War I. If we pull back the lens even further, we will remember that throughout history there has seldom been a peaceful time in the Christian world. The Holy Land itself has frequently been a battle ground. There have been schisms and divisions in the history of the church itself, and every church council was convened to try to correct some mistaken notion, world event, or church heresy. Nor has church leadership always had clean hands, and there have been wars, genocides, and insurrections “in the name of Christ.” Today, when more and more people are leaving organized religion altogether, and people identify themselves as “spiritual but not religious” or “nones”, the need for Christ as leader and ruler and guide is more pressing than ever.

The world in which we live is complex. We are a diverse, global society and there are many issues and opinions ranging from climate change to politics to creed. Sometimes we try and sort it all out, and it is hard to know who and what to believe. One can find multiple takes on the same news story, and social media can easily sway us. Yet when we focus on the Gospel story, it seems very simple indeed. We do not have to know it all or figure it all out. We are not the one on the throne during the Last Judgement. When God starts separating the sheep from the goats, the formula is a simple rule of thumb. “When did you see Christ in others? When did you respond accordingly?” It does not ask if you are Catholic or even Christian; whether you had a police record or an incurable disease; whether you had a PhD or a fifth-grade education, or what languages you spoke. The call is to remember that “Whatsoever you did to the least you did for me.” And then there will be the invitation, “Come you who are blessed. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”

Readings for the Week

Monday: Rv 14:1-3, 4b-5; Ps 24:1bc-4ab, 5-6; Lk 21:1-4
Tuesday: Rv 14:14-19; Ps 96:10-13; Lk 21:5-11
Wednesday: Rv 15:1-4; Ps 98:1-3ab, 7-9; Lk 21:12-19
Thursday: Rv 18:1-2, 21-23; 19:1-3, 9a; Ps 100:1b-5; Lk 21:20-28.
Thanksgiving Day (suggested): Sir 50:22-24; Ps 145:2-11; 1 Cor 1:3-9; Lk 17:11-19
Friday: Rv 20:1-4, 11 — 21:2; Ps 84:3-6a, 8a; Lk 21:29-33
Saturday: Rv 22:1-7; Ps 95:1-7ab; Lk 21:34-36
Sunday: Is 63:16b-17, 19b; 64:2-7; Ps 80:2-3, 15-16, 18-19; 1 Cor 1:3-9; Mk 13:33-37