Gospel John 18:33b-37 (The Solemnity of Christ the King – First Holy Communion)
Can all the candidates please come forward.
Which Feast or Solemnity are we celebrating today? The Solemnity of Christ the King. Can you describe the characteristics of a King? Leadership, he rules, a crown, a throne, a palace and a sceptre.
But Jesus is a different King, He is not the King of this world but King of Heaven. Did you know that you are all kings and queens? From the day of your Baptism, when the Priest put the oil of catechumens on your chest and the oil of chrism on your forehead, you became a Priest, a King and a Prophet. Today you understand better what God wants from you. As a king or queen, God wants you to be leaders. You have responsibilities at school and at home, thus you do things entrusted to you and become leaders.
What is the essential rule here in our hearts and minds? A King’s rule to protect people is simple – Do good, avoid evil. The rule is also mercy. To protect people, we need to be merciful.
The king has a golden crown, but our King has a crown of thorns. His crown is suffering for good, to save us, to bless us and make us holy. Do you suffer? You are too young, but there are some things that make you sad. These thorns or challenges we need to convert into graces and blessings. The crown of thorns must be converted into a crown of glory and joy.
A king sits on a throne but our King sits on a cross. Because He did something wrong? No, because He did something good. And because He did something good, someone was unhappy about it. Who was unhappy? Our sins. This throne is temporary. His throne is the throne of mercy and love. He wants us to help Him to establish His Kingdom.
Today as you nourish yourself with the Eucharist, you will become temples of the Holy Spirit, to be strong and to help Jesus. The Kingdom of Jesus is a Kingdom of truth. Truth will make you free. Lies make us slaves. His Kingdom is a Kingdom of love, mercy and communion. Communion is togetherness and unity. All over the world there are millions of Masses celebrated on a Sunday. We are all celebrating the same unity, togetherness and mystery that He invites us to. Our parents and Priests are only instruments, Jesus is inviting us. As we nourish ourselves with the Eucharist every time we say to Jesus – stay with us. The Eucharist is central, the most important Sacrament in other Sacraments of Marriage, Confirmation, Confession, and Death.
This is part of our initiation or identity – Baptism, Communion and Confirmation – to be soldiers of this King that fight for love, justice, freedom and truth. Amen.