There is incontestably a connection between the proclamation of Our Lord Jesus Christ’s Kingship and the acknowledgment of the existence of the truth. To the question posed by Pilate – Art Thou a King? – Jesus answers: “Thou sayest that I am a king. For this was I born, and for this came I into the world; that I should give testimony to the truth. Every one that is of the truth, heareth my voice.”
This is something very important that we should always keep in our minds. Our Lord Jesus Christ came into the world to give testimony to the light, that is the truth. This is especially clear in the Gospel of Saint John. It appears that the world is divided into two antagonistic camps: The camp of those who, receiving the light of God, recognize the Truth; And the camp of those who refuse to consider the fact that objective truth can exist. They are the Liberals, those who believe that man has absolute freedom of thought. They claim that there is no truth which transcends the mind of man, in other words, that truth is what men have decided they want it to be. Consequently, the truth of the Liberals is one of common consent, one which would satisfy the great majority of people. Or, if you have enough power, the truth can be what you believe and impose upon others. This is the truth of the dictators and tyrants. Liberals and the dictators and tyrants of partisan totalitarianism, there is not so much difference between them after all. In both cases, there is the refusal to accept the objective Truth.
The enemies of the truth show a false humility in order to prove that they are right. They say that nobody can pretend to know the truth and consequently nobody can pretend to teach it to others. With humility, every one should recognize that they may be wrong.
Well, let us accept their postulate and let us say with them that every one can be in the error. Of course, so can they! According to their reasoning, they can be wrong, and if they are wrong by saying that nobody can pretend to know the truth, that means that it is possible to know the truth. So, the mere logic is sufficient to prove that the deniers of the truth are not in the truth.
The fact is that refusing the truth is so much easier than accepting it. Jesus says that every one that is of the truth, hears His voice. But it is so very convenient and easy to not hear Our Lord. Hearing Jesus means accepting His doctrine and His doctrine disrupts our habits and enliven our intellect. Hearing Jesus means that one has to change ones life in order to model it on Jesus. Hearing Jesus means the acceptance of the Cross. So, for many, it is better to not hear Jesus and to believe that there is no truth so that they can continue to lead a quiet and easy life. Many people are non-believer just by pure convenience. Some others by fear or cowardice. So was Pilate who recognized that Jesus was innocent but didn’t dare to save his life. His position was more important than the life of an innocent. “What is the truth?”
Now dear Brethren, take care not to estimate yourself enough satisfied because you have accepted the truth. Let me ask you if you really have accepted the entire truth with all its implications. I don’t mean the great truths we recite every Sunday in our creed. I assume that if you come here regularly you certainly know them. What I mean is have you totally accepted Our Lord Jesus Christ as your King? Do you let Him rule your life and are you utterly devoted to Him?
You come today to this Church to celebrate the Kingship of Our Lord Jesus Christ and I can only congratulate you for this. But it is my duty to tell you that this is good, but not sufficient. Further, it may be quite hypocritical, or at least illusory, to come to honor Christ the King now at church and to forget you duties as subjects to such a King when you are in other places and in other circumstances.
Don’t you hear the impious shout of the world outside? Scelera turba clamitat: Regnare Christum nolumus as we will sing this afternoon at Vespers – a wicked crowd shouts: We don’t want Christ to reign! Don’t you understand that the world doesn’t want Our Lord Jesus Christ and that it does anything in order to expel Him out of the souls? For this, they want to expel Him first out of the society. It is a tragic error to relegate God merely to the sphere of private life. It is an error condemned by the Church, notably by Pius IX in his Syllabus and Pius XI in his Encyclical Letter Quas Primas on the Kingship of Our Lord. Who among you knows these two major documents?
The fact is, dear Brethren, that the world wants you to separate and divide your life in two. A part of your life would be for God: basically few minutes a day and one or two hours on Sunday. The rest of your life, they say, is for your family, your job and yourself. But this is wrong. You must give to God 100% of your time and of your activities. This doesn’t mean that we must pray 24 hours a day but that we must do all thing for the love and the glory of God and, as Saint Paul says, that we must restore all things in Christ – instaurare omnia in Christo.
In the present situation, the truth is that you cannot content yourself with a comfortable and easy little spiritual life. In a time of apostasy and in a time when the truth is even no longer taught everywhere in the Church, your obligation of being Saint and soldiers of Jesus Christ is more urgent. Prayers are necessary but not enough. Quietism is a easy temptation. Because God is almighty, He will do what is necessary for us, so we just have to pray and He will do the rest, so believe the Quietists. This is wrong! As Saint Joan of Arc said, Men fight and God gives the victory! It is certain that there will be no victory if men don’t fight.
The battle is first an ideological one. The world spreads its poisonous doctrine which destroys our intelligences. You must be intellectually well molded in order to opposite all the sophisms and error of our time. We give you this opportunity here at Saint Francis de Sales with catechism class for adult and the Saint Thomas Aquinas group. The topic of this year is precisely the social doctrine of the Church. I wish we could be more than 5 or 6 in our meetings. Saint Pius X, one century ago, already deplored the lack of religious knowledge among the faithful. What would he say today?
The battle is also a moral one, but we can win this battle only if we have enough strength at the level of ideas. Morality cannot do without intelligence. It is admitted that ideas rule the world. So we act according to a certain philosophy and certain principles. If they are wrong, we act in a wrong manner.
Finally, the battle is a battle for holiness. It is a battle for the acknowledgement of the order of Divine Grace in the world. It is a battle for the acknowledgement of the supremacy of Christ the King over the societies, the States, the families. Every single members of the Church are needed for this battle, especially those who have been confirmed. One of the effect of the Sacrament of Confirmation is to make us soldiers of Christ.
The battle field is the world. It is the schools, the universities, the Congress and parliaments. It is the hospitals, the tribunals and the offices. It is the stores, the warehouses, the gymnasiums and stadiums. It is the military bases, the police stations, the train stations and the airports. Wherever you are and whatever is your job, you must fight for the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. Coming into the Church and praying piously is not enough if you forget God immediately after you leave it.
This afternoon after the Solemn Vespers, we will renew our Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus as Pius XI ordered it when he instituted the liturgical solemnity of Christ the King. May this consecration be the mark of our total engagement for the establishment of the Kingship of Christ in the world. May Our Lady help us to be faithful to this engagement, so that Christ the King could live, reign and rule in and over the world.
May she obtain for the Church leaders who have a true concern for the Kingdom of Christ and for salvation of souls. The church doesn’t need managers and public-relations officers. At least it is not her first need. She needs pastors who teach the authentic and entire Faith and who are ready to give their lives for Christ the King. May Our lady obtain from the Heart of her Son such pastors for our souls.
Christus Vincit! Christus regnat! Christus imperat !