THE ASCENSION OF JESUS

By Msgr. Bernard Powers

            The graces of the Ascension of Jesus, the Risen Lord,

            Embraces us,

                        Filling our being with faith

                        And our hearts with gratitude and wonder and assurance.

                        Ascension=Jesus Returning to the Father with the

                        Redeemed Creation.     Ascension is the Leading into

                        The Kingdom of Heaven

 

            Jesus, the Son of God,

            Born the Son of Man at Bethlehem,

            Born of the race of Adam, born of the Virgin Mary

            A man like us in all thing but sin

                        Is now seated at the right hand of God the Father

                        In glory, equal….. in honor, equal… in holiness, equal.

 

                        To the Jesus, ascended and seated at the right hand of the Father

                        Be honor and glory…. Be praise and thanksgiving…

                        Be worship and adoration.

 

            Jesus, the Son of Man

            Who walked the hills of Palestine…

            Who knew the agony of thirst….

            And hardships of human living,

                        Now is seated at the right hand of God the Father

                        In praise and honor and glory.

                        We can get to Heaven too.

 

            The suffering and crucified Christ,

            The Man of sorrows, the Man of the Cross

            Who knew death in crucifixion

                        Is now ascended and is seated at the Right Hand of God the Father

                        In honor and glory…. The Lamb once slain is now raised to the right hand

                        Of the Father in blessing and praise and glory.

            Today Jesus leads All Creation before the throne of God

            In worship and praise – in this Feast of Ascension Jesus leads the

            Souls of the Just into the Eternal Kingdom.

 

            Jesus revealed the Father

            And is now at his Right hand in glory.

                        Therefore, we must believe.

 

            Jesus promised the fullness of eternal life

            And is now at the right hand of the Father,

                        Therefore we must hope.

 

            Jesus offered the way of love and union with God

            And is now at the right hand of the Father,

                        Therefore we must love.

 

                                The Ascension of Jesus

                                Is the absolute assurance to the authenticity of Jesus.

                                Truthfulness

                                Goodness

                                WE need this feast and these graces,

 

 

            If you question the value of sufferings in life,

            Look to the Ascension.

 

            If you question the importance of prayer in life.

            Look to the Ascension.

 

            If you question commitment and loyalty to Jesus in life,

            Look to the Ascension.

 

            If you question your Catholic Faith

            Look to the Ascension.

 

                                What does the Ascension prove?

                                It proves that Jesus is right, necessary, loving.

 

 

            Before Jesus ascended

            He called his disciples together and gave them some directions and assignments.

                        ( My dad was something like this.  When he was going to be away from the farm

                        for a few hours or half a day, he would call us together and give us enough work

                        to keep us busy for four days…)

 

            Before Ascending

            Jesus gives his apostles something to do;

                        Go into the whole world…..

                        Proclaim the gospel….

                        Cast out devils….

                        Cure the sick

                        Exercise power in the church….

 

                                Jesus gave these directions to his disciples on the day of Ascension.

                                He gives you the same directions and commands today:

        You are to go into the whole world…Whitesville…Owensboro...
                       …Fordsville….Louisville….Jamaica

                                            You are to proclaim the gospel… whether you like it or not.

                                            You are to cast out devils. By prayer and fasting

                                            You are to cure the sick…. Though love and care and attention

 

                                            Jesus is ascended…..  but He has left you with responsibility.

 

            Jesus ascended into heaven:

                        At the right hand of God the Father.

                        Above principalities, powers, authorities….Choirs and classes of angels…

                        This human nature at the right hand of God.

 

            What does he do:

                        Intercedes for us…

                        Acts as high priest..

                        Leads All to the Heavenly Kingdom…

                        Brings all the blessings of God to us…

 

            I think the prayer of St Paul in the second reading today

            Is also the prayer on the lips of Jesus at the right hand of the Father;

 

            Jesus prays

                        That we have the spirit of wisdom…  and perception

 

                        That we have a full knowledge of God….

 

                        That the eyes of our hearts and minds be enlightened…so we hope

 

                        That we know the power of the Gospel…

 

                        That we know the power that raised Jesus from the dead..

 

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            This is a great day for us….a great feast we celebrate…. A day of graces..

 

                    We congratulate Jesus.

                    We look to where he is.

                    We have hope to be with him.

                    We raise our minds and our hearts to heaven, to things above.

 

                                    Help us to follow Christ

                                    Into the fullness of eternal life.

    

                                                                            Amen