May 8, 2016
Jun 6, 2016
The Ascension Of The Lord -
A Reflection By Fr. Leo
Before Jesus entered his public ministry, he was tested for 40 days in the desert. From that time of prayer and reflection he emerged to begin his public ministry. The gospel today mentions that Jesus appeared for 40 days to his disciples. This is their time of discernment; their preparation for discipleship in the foot steps of Christ.
Some were still wanting a political victory for the Israelites. They didn’t fully understand the meaning of the kingdom yet, but the Holy Spirit would come and teach them all things. Jesus’ last step in their preparation, before the decent of the Holy Spirit, was his being raised up into heaven in their sight. The experience leaves the disciples full of joy and wonder. We hear of it in both our first reading from the Acts of the Apostles and from today’s Gospel taken from Luke.
Only after the decent of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost did a fuller awareness of God’s presence become understandable in the disciples experience of the Holy Spirit. Next week we shall read how they spoke in different tongues and we empowered to leave their fear behind and go out and make disciples of all nations.
The purpose of the Ascension that we celebrate today is best summed up in the words of the preface for today’s mass. There we hear these poetic words: “He was taken up into heaven in their sight so he could make us sharers in his divinity!” God wants us to share fully in the life of the Trinity through the gift of the Holy Spirit. With the gift of the Holy Spirit we share in God’s divinity, we become his disciples by being one with him as he is one with the Father. Amazing God, who’s gift is beyond our understanding.
As we prepare for the gift of Pentecost next week, let us take time to pray in earnest for the gift of the Holy Spirit. May God manifest himself in us, that his love may be our love and our joy be made full.