The Ascension Year A
The Lord goes up with shouts of joy!
Gladden us with holy joys, almighty God,
and make us rejoice with devout thanksgiving,
for the Ascension of Christ your Son is our exaltation,
and, where the Head has gone before in glory,
the Body is called to follow in hope.
With the feast of the Ascension of the Lord, we come to the end of Jesus’s earthly life. For the Apostles, it has been a journey from suffering and death to the joy of the Resurrection. The Ascension is another huge step in experiencing the Lord’s presence as they continue his work.
The First Reading gives an account of the Ascension from the Acts of the Apostles. Having been instructed by Jesus for forty days, they now witness his Ascension and are promised the gift of the Holy Spirit.
The Psalm exults in praise for the Lord, who is raised on high and is acclaimed as king of all the earth.
St Paul, in the Second Reading, prays that we may fully realise our own glorious hope. God our Father, in raising Jesus high, bestows on us the hope of sharing in his glory.
The Gospel is short and to the point. The eleven receive Jesus’s blessing, as they are sent out to spread his word throughout the earth. They are also given the promise that Jesus will be with them always.
Following some very hard, demanding and painful months, we too are reminded that the Lord is always with us as we are being continuously sent out in his name.