Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord
Acts 1:1-11, Psalm 47:2-3, 6-7, 8-9, Ephesians 1:17-23 or 4:1-13 or 4:1-7, 11-13,
& Mark 16:15-20
The human life of Jesus came to an end on Good Friday. He was so obviously human that His claim to be God was the very cause of His death. After His Resurrection, Jesus was still present on earth in a far less obvious manner and only to those who believed in Him. His presence during this period was frequent and relatively public. Most often, He appeared to several people at a time as they gathered in His name.
What today's Solemnity of the Ascension marks is not Jesus' departure from our world but the beginning of a new period when He is not even that present to the community of the believers. Now is the time of the Holy Spirit when Jesus is present most profoundly in the whispering of the Spirit in the hearts and minds of those of us who believe.
In our world, Jesus sends all of us to go out and preach the Good News in His place and His name. The Good News is that our lives are not meaningless or absurd, and death does not swallow all and end-all. That we disappear, as Jesus did, only to begin a new life where we will see Him face to face and genuinely understand His goodness and His love for us.
Today, and every day, let us go forth in joy, showing that the hope in which we live is indeed the "Good News."
Question of the Day: Do you believe that the Good News of Jesus is that our sinfulness is not the measure of our distance from God but the very place where His love reaches out to all of us?
Prayer: Lord, open the eyes of my heart. Give me joy and hope. Heal what needs to be healed. Warm what is cold in me. Enkindle within me the fire of Your love. Let me heal and warm other hearts to know Jesus' love. Let me hear the cry of the poor. Let me join You in renewing the face of the earth. Amen.