2011-11-20, 34th A – Christ the King, Carbon Copies

Homily 11-20-11
34th Sunday A, Our Lord Jesus Christ the King – Children’s Family Mass
Ez 34:11-12,15-17; Ps 23:1-6; 1 Cor 15:20-26,28; Mt 25:31-46

Hi Kids, all of you, young and old.  You know, today’s not just another normal Sunday.  Today is a special Sunday and we call it “Christ the King.”  On this day, we remember that, even though Jesus came to us as a poor baby, and lived among us as a poor man, and died the death of a criminal on the cross, on this day we celebrate Jesus who is still the King of our hearts.

And we celebrate Jesus especially today because today is the LAST day of the Church’s year.  Next Sunday we will begin a whole new Church year and we’ll call that day the First Sunday of Advent.

The readings we heard today are also about Last Days.  A Last Day can be both a happy and a sad time.  We can be happy if we know that what’s going to come is going to be even better than what was before.  For example, we can be happy on the Last Day, just before a vacation.  And yet, we can be sad too.  If we miss the old times too much, we’ll be sad.  If we didn’t do something we should have done before that Last Day, that could make us pretty sad too.

Jesus is reminding us today that He is watching everything we do.  And that shouldn’t scare us.  It should actually comfort us, knowing that Jesus is looking after us.  Father gave me a great example of how to show you this.  How Jesus is always watching and caring for us.

 If we wanted to make a copy of something today, we could use a copier, or we could print copies from our computer, or we can even scan and print a page using our printer.  Well in the OLD days, before printers, and before computers, and even before copiers, people used to type all their work on these old gadgets we called typewriters.  On a typewriter there was no edit mode or undo button.  And there wasn’t even whiteout.  If they made a mistake, it was ‘Start all over again!”  And if they wanted more than one copy, it was either typing the whole thing twice or using this funny paper we called “Carbon Paper.”

Show Carbon Paper

The way a “carbon copy” worked, was that a black sheet of “carbon paper” was placed between two clean sheets of paper and what was typed or written on the top sheet would be copied on the one beneath it.

Show LOVE on both sheets.

So now, let’s all play a little game.  We know that there are all different kinds of people out there.  And they all have different effects on us.  We either LOVE them, we HATE them, or we do our best to IGNORE them.  Now, here we have a sheet of paper with pictures of some of these different kinds of people.  And I’d like you all to decide how they affect you.   LOVE (thumbs up), HATE (thumbs down), or IGNORE (flat hand).

Write (their choice) over each small picture on top page.
(Carbon paper between this and another page with Jesus’ picture on it
– Kids don’t know)

Now Jesus said, what you did for the least of my brothers and sisters you did for me.  You see, even though we don’t see God directly in the faces of other people, what we Do or what we Think about other people is written on the Face of Jesus too.  Now that doesn’t mean that we have to love the nasty things some people do.  But they are all children of God and hating them sometimes hurts us more than it will ever hurt them.  So with people who act badly, what we can do is pray for them and for their souls, that the power of God can change their ways and help them to act more fairly to others.

Now show Jesus’ face picture with “Love” and “Hate” carbon copied in different places.

And yet, Jesus will always love us.  We just don’t need to hurt him any more.

In just a few moments we will be bringing a brand new child into our Church through the Sacrament of Baptism.  In that ceremony, Grady will be anointed with a special oil called Chrism.  That Chrism will mark Grady as a Child of God.  And just like the carbon copy, the oil will mark Grady’s forehead and be copied into his entire being making him a part of this Body of Christ, the same Body of Christ we are ALL a part of, including Jesus in the Holy Eucharist.

Now as little kids, we might be wondering just what we can do to make any kind of difference in the world?  Well, God gave us all (even us adults) a very special gift that we can use to build His Kingdom among us.  And it doesn’t take words, and it doesn’t take lifting weights or building Churches.  All we need to do to change the world around us is SMILE, and know always that Jesus loves us (all of us) – no matter what!

__________________________________________________________
Scripture Readings:

Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ The King

Reading 1 – Ez 34:11-12, 15-17

Thus says the Lord GOD:  I myself will look after and tend my sheep.   As a shepherd tends his flock when he finds himself among his scattered sheep, so will I tend my sheep.  I will rescue them from every place where they were scattered when it was cloudy and dark.  I myself will pasture my sheep;  I myself will give them rest, says the Lord GOD.  The lost I will seek out, the strayed I will bring back, the injured I will bind up, the sick I will heal, but the sleek and the strong I will destroy, shepherding them rightly.  As for you, my sheep, says the Lord GOD, I will judge between one sheep and another, between rams and goats.
Responsorial Psalm – Ps 23:1-2, 2-3, 5-6

R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.  In verdant pastures he gives me repose.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
Beside restful waters he leads me; he refreshes my soul.
He guides me in right paths for his name’s sake.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
You spread the table before me in the sight of my foes;
you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
Only goodness and kindness follow me all the days of my life;
and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD for years to come.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

Reading 2 – 1 Cor 15:20-26, 28

Brothers and sisters: Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.  For since death came through man, the resurrection of the dead came also through man.  For just as in Adam all die, so too in Christ shall all be brought to life,
but each one in proper order: Christ the first fruits; then, at his coming, those who belong to Christ; then comes the end, when he hands over the kingdom to his God and Father,
when he has destroyed every sovereignty and every authority and power.  For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.  The last enemy to be destroyed is death.  When everything is subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected
to the one who subjected everything to him, so that God may be all in all.

Gospel – Mt 25:31-46

Jesus said to his disciples: “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit upon his glorious throne, and all the nations will be assembled before him.  And he will separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.  He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. 

Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father.  Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.  For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.’

Then the righteous will answer him and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink?  When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?  When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?’  And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of the least brothers of mine, you did for me.’

Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you accursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.  For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, a stranger and you gave me no welcome, naked and you gave me no clothing, ill and in prison, and you did not care for me.’ 

Then they will answer and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or ill or in prison, and not minister to your needs?’  He will answer them, ‘Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me.’  And these will go off to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”

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