Father Hathaway’s Weekly Column — November 21, 2021


Today, November 21, is the last Sunday in Ordinary Time and the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. With this feast, we acclaim the authority of Christ as the King and Lord of all things, on earth and in heaven. This annual celebration also points us to the end of time when His Kingdom will be established in all its fullness. Appropriately, the feast comes at the conclusion of one liturgical year and the beginning of a new one. Alpha and Omega.

Pope Pius XI instituted this feast in 1925 with his encyclical Quas Primas (“In the first”), a response to growing nationalism and secularism. Nearly a century later, we again do well to turn to Our Lord, who reigns over all people and nations, for strength and solace. While governments and political philosophies come and go, Christ is King forever. O Lord, help us to see You, to serve You and to give our lives to You, the only King worthy of them.

As noted in this column last week, November 21 also marks the beginning of the Diocese of Arlington’s three-year celebration of its Golden Jubilee – its 50th anniversary. Founded in 1974 by Bishop Thomas J. Welsh, our diocese, now one of the 50 largest in the United States, has a rich history. Our own Basilica of Saint Mary has been central to that story, reaching back to the founding of our parish, as the first Catholic parish in Virginia, in 1795. You can read more about the Jubilee at https://www.arlingtondiocese.org/jubileehome/.


Our traditional 40 Hours of Eucharistic Adoration, December 6 through 8, will coincide with the beginning of the Diocesan Golden Jubilee celebration. If you haven’t already done so, I encourage you to sign up for an hour of peaceful prayer and meditation in the Presence of Our Eucharistic Lord. Please click here for the 40 Hours schedule and sign-up details.


On Thursday, November 25, we celebrate Thanksgiving Day. May we pause to give thanks to God for the many blessings we often take for granted — family, friends and faith. If you will be in the area, please begin your family’s Thanksgiving gathering with us here as a parish family for Mass at 10 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day. You can find our Thanksgiving week schedule by clicking here.


Finding Peace with Jesus and Mary in Advent is the theme of a silent weekend retreat for women of the Basilica, December 3 through 5, at the Arlington Diocesan Retreat Center in White Post, VA. You can find more information by clicking here. The deadline to register is November 26. As this issue of the bulletin goes to press, there are still a few open spots. If you are interested in attending, so be sure to register now!

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