A fittingly cruciform reign…


(HT to Mundabor)

Christus Vincit! Christus Regnat! Christus Imperat!
Exaudi Christe. Summo pontifici et universali pape vita!
Salvator mundi, tu illum adjuva!
Sancta Maria, tu illum adiuva
Sancte Petre, tu illum adiuva
Sancte Paule, tu illum adiuva
Rex Regum. Christus Vincit!
Rex Noster. Christus Regnat!
Gloria Nostra. Christus Imperat!
Ipsi soli imperium, gloria et potestas, per immortalia saecula saeculorum. Amen.
Christus Vincit! Christus Regnat! Christus Imperat!

Christ conquers! Christ reigns! Christ commands!
Hear Christ. The high priest, the pope ‘s the Supreme and universal life!
Saviour of the world, You help him!
Holy Mary, help you to
Saint Peter, do you help him
Saint Paul, you help him
King of Kings. Christ conquers!
Our King. Christ reigns!
Our Glory. Christ commands!
To Him only is the glory and power, by the immortal, world without end. Amen.
Christ conquers! Christ reigns! Christ commands!

+ + +

Last night I was stoked to worship in the Solemnity of Christ the King, and had even been getting my wife prepared for it during the preceding days. Even before dawn had broken, however, I was awoken by news that our little son was having breathing troubles, so I got up to help my wife care for him. I quickly retreated to bed again, but only a couple hours later was awoken by the boy shrieking as mommy suctioned his congested nostrils. I got up to do my fatherly share (“Unnhh? Wha? Oh no. … Okay.”) but then retreated to sleep again. Not too much later, it was my daughter that woke me up, intent on seeing what was wrong with her little brother. So I carried her out, where, I gather, she fell asleep with mommy and little brother–by then I had retreated to the groggy banks of Lethe. When I finally woke up, I felt weak and borderline ill. In other words, not in top Christ-the-King form.

We were already too late for our usual Mass, so we were preparing to attend a later one slightly farther away. By the time I was ready to go, though, one look at my boy–red-rimmed, glazed eyes, snot-bubbled nose, and perpetually open cough-mouth–swayed my hand to leave Team Bougis at home and just go to Mass by myself. That was disappointing, since I had wanted to give our best for this solemnity–yet in the very act of cursing my finitude, I was reminded of the way in which Christ took His throne. As the Solemnity’s second reading (from Colossians 1) puts it:

13 [God] hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of the Son of his love, 14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the remission of sins; 15 Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: 16 For in him were all things created in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones, or dominations, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him and in him. 17 And he is before all, and by him all things consist. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he may hold the primacy: 19 Because in him, it hath well pleased the Father, that all fullness should dwell; 20 And through him to reconcile all things unto himself, making peace through the blood of his cross, both as to the things that are on earth, and the things that are in heaven.

Notate bene the constant interpenetration of Christ crucified and Christ regnant. He reigns by the standard of His mercy–in hoc signo vinces! Thus it was precisely in my little sufferings that I felt Christ’s reign. He reigned over–or subjected to Himself–Team Bougis’s little batch of sufferings not only because they paled in comparison to His Passion, but also because His grace empowered me to glorify His sovereignty despite the palpable desire to crawl off the Cross of Sunday obligation and stay at home with my sick family. It may sound overwrought, but I mean it sincerely: His glory shone into my soul in a rare way today at Mass, precisely because my soul was already perforated by the nicks and wounds of my struggles over the past few days. It may have been Bono or it may have been Philip Yancey, or Helmut Thielicke, or someone else altogether, but the idea has always stuck with me: our faults are the cracks by which grace enters our lives.

pontifex amoris victima - christ kingMy King bears me up in the fortifications of His wounds.

About The Codgitator (a cadgertator)

Catholic convert. Quasi-Zorbatic. Freelance interpreter, translator, and web marketer. Former ESL teacher in Taiwan (2003-2012) and former public high school teacher (2012-2014). Married father of three. Multilingual, would-be scholar, and fairly consistent fitness monkey. My research interests include: the interface of religion and science, the history and philosophy of science and technology, ancient and medieval philosophy, and cognitive neuroscience. Please pray for me.
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