This weekend is Saturday the 21 & Sunday the 22 November, the Feast of Christ the King, beginning the 34th week of Ordinary time.
The University of Johannesburg Choir sing Ndisondela Kuwe, I come to you in prayer, almighty God. You are worthy to be praised. On this feast of Christ the King can I come before Christ in prayer and praise Him?
This Sunday we celebrate the Feast of Christ the King. The kingship of Christ – what readings do you think would be appropriate or would you expect to hear for this feast? Let us listen to one of the readings which is taken from the prophet Ezekiel.
For thus says the Lord God: I myself will search for my sheep, & will seek them out. As shepherds seek out their flocks when they are among their scattered sheep, so I will seek out my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places to which they have been scattered on a day of clouds & thick darkness. I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, & I will make them lie down, says the Lord God. I will seek the lost, & I will bring back the strayed, & I will bind up the injured, & I will strengthen the weak, but the fat & the strong I will destroy. I will feed them with justice.
As for you, my flock, thus says the Lord God: I shall judge between sheep & sheep, between rams & goats.
What comes to mind when you think of a king? A crown, royal palaces, majesty, pomp and circumstance…. Yet on the Feast of Christ the King, the talk is all about sheep! Jesus came to show us what God’s kingship and God’s reign is. He began his public ministry with the proclamation: “the kingdom of God has come near.”
In this country we can usually leave the sheep to graze on their own. But in the hilly country of Palestine, there was always a shepherd to watch over the sheep, to stop them wandering off into the wilderness or to protect them from attack by wild animals. The sheep can so easily stray and become lost. Yet the shepherd seeks out the lost, brings back the stray, tends the wounded and strengthens the weak. Do I find myself wandering from the right path?
We too can be just as silly and act in the same way. With this in mind, listen to the reading again.
Spend a few moments with the Lord who seeks you, who cherishes you, guards you, heals you, calms your fears and who even gives his life for you. That is what his kingship is.
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.