November 22, 2015

The Gospel Today

The Solemnity Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe

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.”

Reflection (Sem. Leonides Jimmy T. Jesuro III)

11.22

 

This Sunday marks the end of the liturgical year of our Catholic Church. With grateful hearts, we take time to remember all the grace-filled moments we have had during this year. A jubilant feeling may be stirred up in us today, which is very apt because this is the day we observe the Solemnity of Christ the King.

It is certain that when I am in the presence of a highly esteemed leader like a king, joyful feelings and the spirit of gratitude in me may be elicited. This is what we may be feeling today, recognizing Christ as the King of our time, and grateful for another Church liturgical year is coming to a close.

I worked in the Middle East three years ago, in a country that was ruled by a king. His image was placed and adored in each government institution, private company, and all other entities under his leadership. During the National Day, it was announced that the king would join and show up during the civic parade. I was excited to see the king in person. Hence, I invited some of my former co-employees to join me in my plan to watch the civic parade and to experience how it would be in the midst of a king.

The plan pushed through, and the road where we stationed ourselves to catch a glimpse of the king was filled with a multitude of spectators. We waited until the king passed by our station with his entourage, and we bowed to him to show our reverence.

I was enthusiastic and joyful to see a real king finally. I nurtured the feelings since then, because how I wish that time will come for me to see the King of Kings, no less than Jesus Christ, in person and in flesh! How wonderful experience this could be – to meet Christ face-to-face, far more wonderful and outstanding than the one I had with that king in the Middle East.

In the context of my seminary life, I certainly consider Jesus Christ as the true King, second to none. He became a King during His time, not according to the understanding of the world, but by how His Father in heaven had willed it for Him – which is to become a King who is the servant of all. I may declare, “Glory to the King who fathers forth His citizens.”

The invitation for me is to espouse the identity of Christ as a servant leader to all. Like Him, the offer for me remains – to be a steward of resources that are not mine. Even a king in our present time does not have the fountain of resources I suppose. Hence, he is also challenged to be accountable before Christ on the things lent to him and his kingdom. While in formation, inspired by the kingship of Christ, I shall know how to manage myself well, so that I can become a holy priest one day.

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