Prayer to Christ the King
Brother John Raymond
November 24, 1996
The Feast of Christ The King marks the end of the Church's
Liturgical Year. How did this particular feast come about?
After the revelations of the Sacred Heart to St. Margaret Mary in
the 17th century became known, many religious orders,
confraternities, devotions and apostolates were begun which were
dedicated to the Sacred Heart. Following the example of St. Margaret
Mary, individuals consecrated themselves to the Sacred Heart. In
1844, the "Apostleship of Prayer" began to promote the consecration
of families to the Sacred Heart.
Not only individuals and families but also towns, cities and
countries were consecrated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Ecuador was
consecrated to the Sacred Heart by its saintly president, Garcia
Moreno in 1873. Ireland, San Salvador, Venezuela, Colombia, Costa
Rica, Brazil and Bolivia were all consecrated by their governments
to the Sacred Heart.
Blessed Mary of the Divine Heart (d.1899), a saintly German Good
Shepherd Sister, was requested by Our Blessed Lord to ask Pope Leo
XIII to consecrate the world to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. This
great Pope did as Our Blessed Lord requested and issued an
encyclical, "Annum Sacrum," about the Sacred Heart. On June 11,
1899, He consecrated the world to the Sacred Heart. He stated that
it was the greatest act of his pontificate.
Just what does consecration to the Sacred Heart mean?
Consecration proclaims the Sacred Heart of Jesus the King and Center
of one's heart, one's home and one's nation. The consecration of
nations to the Sacred Heart is part of the apostolate called the
Social Reign of the Sacred Heart. It was exactly this aspect of
Sacred Heart spirituality that brought about the Feast of Christ The
King. This feast was promoted and petitioned by devotees of the
Sacred Heart, especially the French couple, George and Marthe
Noaillat. They directed the "Society of the Reign" and a center of
Sacred Heart devotion at Paray-le-Monial in France. Pope Pius XI,
before instituting the feast of Christ The King, wanted to know if
it was desired by the faithful and the bishops. The Noaillets
collected signatures and received the encouraging approval of about
300 Cardinals and Bishops. The Holy Father issued the encyclical
"Quas Primas" and established the feast in 1925. Surely the hope for
our world today is the proclamation of Jesus as our King! We need to
echo the last triumphant words of the Jesuit Mexican martyr (d.1927)
Blessed Miguel Pro, "Viva Christo Rey!" Live Christ The King!
Prayer to Christ The King
O Christ Jesus, I acknowledge You to be King of the Universe; all
that has been made is created by You. Exercise over me all Your
sovereign rights. I hereby renew the promises of my baptism,
renouncing Satan and all his pomps and works and I dedicate myself
to lead henceforth a truly Christian life. I will try to bring about
the triumph of the rights of God and Your Church. Sacred Heart of
Jesus, I offer You my poor actions to obtain the acknowledgment by
every heart of Your sacred kingly power so that the kingdom of Your
peace be firmly established throughout the earth.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Your Kingdom come through Mary, Your
Sacred Heart of Jesus, protect our families.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of Heaven and of our homes, pray
St. Joseph, friend of the Sacred Heart, pray for us.
St. Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Guardian Angels of our families, pray for us.
("Prayer to Christ the King" taken and adapted from "Enthronement of
the Sacred Heart," Rev. Francis Larkin, SS.CC., Daughters of St.
Paul: Boston, 1978)