Next Sunday is the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, the culmination of salvation history. Christ is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the firstborn of the dead, the sovereign over all earthly rulers.
In our day, we seem to witness the collapse of so much that our human “wisdom” and power have erected apart from the Lord: the empire of man passes away. The Gospel tells us that, whereas the living Word of God remains, heaven and earth will pass away in a time unsurpassed in distress since nations began.
Even in individual lives, as we age, comes the failure of our dreams and ideals at mid-life and, then later, the collapse of so much we struggled to construct. We see the same futility in human affairs around the world. But we are also promised a new heaven and a new earth and don’t we also see this in the courageous and serene faces of those seniors who have dealt well with life, taking it on its own terms, learning from their hard knocks? Trusting in the Lord’s own example, can’t we dare to hope for this new heaven and new earth, for the Son of Man coming on the clouds? His dominion shall be an everlasting dominion and it shall not pass away.
Every year the Church’s liturgy reminds each of us to reflect on these final realities–not in dread but in hope. Every year we are invited to distinguish what is passing from what is eternal and lasting, not just in the future but now: for God is already preparing us and is already preparing the New Creation now.
from a Chapter Talk by Abbot Robert Barnes