We are men - laymen - who are called to consecrate our lives to our Lord Jesus Christ and to His kingdom.
Our goal is to deepen the gift of baptism through our response to a personal call by professing the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, according to the traditions and teachings of the Catholic Church. This call is lived in the situation we are in. We are students, workers, professionals, employees, businessmen and retired men. Our personal choice to live as Christians animates our lives, which are lived in the environment each of us is a part of. We are a community, but we do not live together. We do not have common codes of dress or outward signs to distinguish us. Neither do we have common works, occupations, professions or even ways of evangelizing Christ’s presence in the world.
Our community is for each of us a “place" of formation, spiritual nourishment and spiritual accompaniment.
The Name of the Institute
The Kingdom of Christ is at the centre of our spirituality. We follow Jesus Christ crucified as “King”. His kingdom is neither geopolitical, nor powerful from a worldly standpoint.
It is not a kingdom of armed legions, or swords or other weaponry, neither dictatorial nor materialistic, but rather spiritual.
God reigns when His will is done - when His plans for a new heaven and a new earth are realised - when all things are gathered in Christ.
We desire to live as Christians; in this world and in the place we are without any additional signs or outward display of our consecration.
We adopt the words of the Second Vatican Council: “At the same time it insisted on the unique character of their vocation, which is in a special way to "seek the Kingdom of God by engaging in temporal affairs and ordering them according to the plan of God." “They live in the ordinary circumstances of family and social life, from which the very fabric of their existence is woven."
We dedicate a certain amount of our time to daily prayer, which is nourished by meditating on the Word of God and the Holy Eucharist.
We see our activities as a gift and these are offered daily in the Eucharist through which it is nourished and animated.
Our consecration is closely connected with our Secularity.
We were founded by Giuseppe Lazzati and ten of his companions who felt called to live this kind of life in the 1930s.
Lazzati and his companions wanted to remain in the world and in society at large as ‘yeast’ and ‘salt’, just as its mentioned in the Gospel. They sought a total dedication to the Lord, while still remaining inserted in the world, each living his personal vocation in his own way, responsible for the transformation of the world according to the plan of God. All areas of work, social engagement, politics, unions, were and could be used as a response to the call to radically follow the Lord. They strongly felt the need to be church and as lay people be fully engaged in the mission and life of the Church.
The then Archbishop of Milan, Blessed Ildefonso Schuster, encouraged and helped them to find the legal and appropriate manner in which they could realize their dream of becoming a community. In 1952, through a decree, he canonically formed the Secular Institute "Milites Christi," as it was called at the beginning. This was later on to become "Christ the King", which was recognized by Pope Paul VI in 1963, thus becoming a Secular Institute of Pontifical Right.
The members of the Institute are in Italy, Poland, India, New Zealand, Congo (DR), Ghana, Uganda and Venezuela.
We are organized in "Communities" based on geographical and linguistic requirements, which constitute a minimum of 10 members. Each community has a Local president while a President General and a General Council govern the entire Institute. Both are elected every five years by the Congress of the Institute.