It is providential that this blog arose from my volunteering at the Cathedral of Christ the King, because faith formation helps others to recognize and welcome the Kingship of Christ.
Although the imagery of Christ as King is ancient, its annual liturgical celebration is relatively new – calling to mind St. Augustine’s cry to God, “O Beauty ever ancient, ever new.”
Pope Pius XI established the feast of Christ the King in his 1925 encyclical, Quas Primas.
In Quas Primas, Pius XI issues a clarion call to embrace the Kingship of Christ in every aspect of our lives:
He must reign in our minds…. He must reign in our wills…. He must reign in our hearts…. He must reign in our bodies and in our members, which should serve as instruments for the interior sanctification of our souls…. If all these truths are presented to the faithful for their consideration, they will prove a powerful incentive to perfection.
Quas Primas, 33
The goal of faith formation is not simply to further knowledge in an intellectual sense alone, but to deepen our relationship with Christ.
By studying the beauty, depth, and richness of our Catholic faith, we are inspired to respond ever more to God’s grace and grow in holiness.
The more we let go of ourselves and surrender to Christ, the more we experience His peace and joy, even amid difficulties and sufferings. We remember that our time on earth is short, and this life is but a preparation for eternity.
Through honoring Christ’s Kingship in our daily lives, we prepare ourselves to enter into His heavenly kingdom, where our deepest human longings will be fulfilled.
But what does it mean to entrust ourselves to Christ, and how do we do so?
We come to know Christ through the Scriptures and Sacred Tradition, two expressions of the one Divine Revelation handed on by the Church.
We converse with Him in prayer, both privately and in the prayer we lift up as part of the universal Church.
We encounter Him in the sacraments that He instituted, above all the Eucharist.
We meet Him in our neighbor, so that our faith takes on the practical aspect of moral living, in right relationship with each other.
All of these elements – beliefs, worship, moral life, and prayer – are set forth in great detail in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
For this reason, Pope Benedict XVI encouraged us to study the Catechism in a special way during the Year of Faith that he inaugurated last October.
As a result, I have been summarizing the Catechism, topic by topic. These summaries will now find a home on this blog.