Christ the Pantocrator mosaic from Hagia Sophia, Istanbul. Image © Dianelos Georgoudis

This Sunday is called Christ the King Sunday. It is a relatively recent addition to the lectionary calendar, only added in 1994. Christians believe that Jesus is the long awaited Messiah or Christ in Greek, which translates as Anointed One – or King – in English. In some church traditions, this day marks the dominion of Christ over all creation (as in mosaic pictured). In other traditions the day looks forward to the end of time when the reign of Christ will be fully established.

In our Uniting Church tradition, this day offers the opportunity to reflect on how Jesus overturned the usual concepts of power and leadership. Rather than following the way of violence, Jesus became vulnerable. Rather than exerting strength, Jesus modelled the way of service. Rather than seeking power over others, Jesus followed the way of peace. May we learn afresh what it means to walk in the footsteps of Jesus the King.