Catholic Activity: Family Procession in Honor of Christ the King
Processions are an important feature of Catholic culture. They are a world-wide custom going back to our Jewish roots. Catholic processions are a form of pilgrimage first undertaken by the Jews to represent important historical events. Catholics have developed many processions for special occasions to remind us that the Christian life is a constant movement toward God and our eternal home. We can also make processions a practice in the domestic church. It may seem like a simple practice but it makes an impression on children, especially if parents participate, and will help to make the feast more concrete and significant.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church
1674 Besides sacramental liturgy and sacramentals, catechesis must take into account the forms of piety and popular devotions among the faithful. The religious sense of the Christian people has always found expression in various forms of piety surrounding the Church's sacramental life, such as the veneration of relics, visits to sanctuaries, pilgrimages, processions, the stations of the cross, religious dances, the rosary, medals, etc.
1675 These expressions of piety extend the liturgical life of the Church, but do not replace it. They "should be so drawn up that they harmonize with the liturgical seasons, accord with the sacred liturgy, are in some way derived from it and lead the people to it, since in fact the liturgy by its very nature is far superior to any of them."
Select a family member to carry a picture or statue of Christ, form a line with the selected member last. Walk in procession around your yard singing an appropriate hymn. Process into the house where you can have an altar prepared to place the picture or statue. Say the prayer to Christ the King acknowledging Him as King of the family and renewing your baptismal promises, then enjoy refreshments or a nice meal. The following hymn written by Daniel A. Lord, S.J. is especially appropriate for children:
For Christ the King
An army of youth
Flying the standards of Truth,
We’re fighting for Christ, the Lord.
Heads lifted high,
Catholic Action our cry,
And the Cross our only sword.
On Earth’s battlefield
Never a vantage we’ll yield
As dauntlessly on we swing.
Comrades true, dare and do
’Neath the Queen’s white and blue,
For our flag, for our faith
For Christ the King.
1) Christ lifts His hands; the King commands;
His challenge, “Come and follow Me.”
From every side, With eager stride,
We form in the lines of victory.
Let foemen lurk, And laggards shirk,
We throw our fortunes with the Lord,
Mary’s Son, till the world is won.
We have pledged you our loyal word.
2) Our hearts are pure, Our minds are sure;
No sin our gleaming helmet taints.
No foeman fierce Our shield shall pierce;
We're captained by God's unconquered saints.
Yet peace we bring, And a gentle King,
Whose law is light and life and love.
Mary's Son, May Thy will be done
Here on earth as it is above.