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Christ Reigns from the Cross
Diane M. Houdek
Source: Bringing Home the Word
Published: Sunday, November 24, 2013

One of the feasts significant to St. Francis was that of the Triumph of the Cross, celebrated in September. This image can help us understand the Feast of Christ the King, which we celebrate today.

The Scripture readings remind us of the paradox at the heart of Christianity: only through death will we find eternal life. Power is expressed not through the ability to control others but through the ability to be at peace with those who would control us.

For Francis the image of a king would have come naturally. In the medieval world, all of reality, both on earth and in heaven, was expressed in hierarchical terms. Francis transferred his desire to serve a great feudal lord into his service to the Lord God:

“Or was this really prayer, after all, this reverie that led him always to fall on his knees in thanksgiving for the Lord and King whom his longing for knighthood had led him to, this Lord of all, who filled him still with awe and gratitude and love which no earthly lord could possibly have engendered in his heart? This Lord Jesus, this Lord of heaven and earth.” (Francis and Jesus, by Murray Bodo, O.F.M.)

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