Poland joins with Peru and Ukraine in recent public consecrations of their countries to Christ the King and the Immaculate Heart.
During a solemn ceremony at the church of Divine Mercy in Krakow, the Catholic bishops of Poland officially recognized Christ as King of Poland. The ceremony, which took place on November 19, was carried out in the presence of Polish President Andrzej Duda. This act of consecration was repeated in all of the churches of Poland on Sunday, November 20, the day when the majority of the Roman Catholic Church celebrates the Feast of Christ the King according to the revised liturgical calendar of 1970.
This recognition of Christ’s Kingship on this day is laudable, particularly given that the Divine Office and Mass for the revised Feast of Christ the King removes all of the traditional references to Our Lord’s earthly rule. These unfortunate changes, which were made to appease the liberal belief that the Church should have no role in political life, thankfully did not stop the Polish bishops from following the teachings set forth in Pope Pius XI’s encyclical Quas Primas:
Nations will be reminded by the annual celebration of this feast that not only private individuals but also rulers and princes are bound to give public honor and obedience to Christ.”
The decision to declare Christ the King of Poland comes during the 1,050th anniversary of the Baptism of Poland which is traditionally ascribed to Holy Saturday, April 14, 966 when Mieszko I, the first ruler of Poland, was received into the Catholic Church. While many of his subjects remained pagan, zealous missionary work in the centuries following Mieszo’s baptism resulted in the full Christianization of the country by the end of the 12th Century. Poland’s conversion came at a providential time when other Slavic kingdoms, including Kyivan-Rus’ in 988, began to bring the Light of Christ to peoples long shrouded in the darkness of superstition and idolatry.
The declaration of Christ’s Kingship over Poland follows two other recent acts of national consecration. First, on October 21, President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski of Peru consecrated his country to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary during a national prayer breakfast:
By the authority vested in me, I make an act of consecration of myself, my family and the Republic of Peru, to the love and protection of Almighty God through the intercession of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.”
Then, two days later, Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Patriarch Sviatoslav Shevchuk, at a ceremony held at Fatima, consecrated Ukraine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary with these words:
Mary, we stand today before your countenance and consecrate to your Immaculate Heart and place under your protection Ukraine and other Eastern European nations and the world. We offer you all the pain and suffering of Ukraine, because only through conversion and repentance comes peace. Receive our offering and save our people and our land and the world from sin and death."
Catholics everywhere can continue to hope and pray that their respective ecclesiastical and secular leaders will soon follow these beautiful examples of national consecration to Our Lord and His Most Holy Mother. Despite the reign of liberal ideology throughout the world, there are those who have not forgotten that men need God above all else and that the nations of the world owe Him unyielding obedience.