This is a story about an Irish King. He had no children to succeed him on the throne, so he decided to choose his successor from among the people. The only condition set by the King, as announced throughout his kingdom, was that the candidate must have a deep love for God and neighbor.

In a remote village of the kingdom lived a poor but gentle youth who was noted for his kindness and helpfulness to all his neighbors. The villagers encouraged him to enter the contest for kingship. They took up a collection for him so that he could make the long journey to the royal palace. After giving him the necessary food and a good overcoat, they sent him on his way.

As the young man neared the castle, he noticed a beggar sitting on a bench in the royal park, wearing torn clothes. He was shivering in the cold while begging for food. Moved with compassion, the young man gave the beggar his new overcoat and the food he had saved for his return journey.

After waiting for a long time in the parlor of the royal palace, the youth was admitted for an interview with the king. As he raised his eyes after prostrating before the king, he was amazed to find the King wearing the overcoat he had given to the beggar at the park and greeting him as the new King of the country.

When He comes in glory, Christ the King is going to judge us on the basis of our corporal and spiritual works of mercy.

Submitted by Fr. Joseph Dovari