My sisters and brothers in Christ,
ascension_of_jesusJesus ascends to heaven and is no longer with us in the ways that He was during his lifetime and immediately after His Resurrection. It is not easy for us to understand completely all that happened in those days after the Resurrection and we must trust in the Scriptures that have been handed
down to us. There is clearly an experience of Jesus truly risen from the dead and living in a completely different way from before His death. Then there is an experience of His absence before these early disciples receive the Holy Spirit.
So the first reading today, from the Acts of the Apostles, speaks directly of the experience of these early followers of Jesus, when they saw Him go up to heaven and disappear from their sight. There is a promise in this reading that He will return in the same way. The Gospel today, from Saint Matthew, gives us some of the last words of Jesus to His followers. The importantwords are that He will be with us to the end of time.
At the heart of this mystery of the Ascension is the reality that Jesus is no longer with His followers in the same way, but that He is
always with us, even to the end of time. We do not always feel His presence. Sometimes we doubt His presence. Nevertheless, He is
always present to us.

Because of this reality, we continue to ask for the Holy Spirit to be with us in a way that keeps us aware of the presence of Jesus in every aspect of our lives. We need to knowthe presence of Jesus and that presence is always with us in the Holy Spirit.

Our attention moves easily today from the Ascension to the presence of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Jesus, who will deepen the faith in our hearts if we ask that. Come, Holy Spirit!
Help us understand these mysteries of our faith. Help us grow deeper in faith.
Help us know your presence and the love of Jesus in our lives.

Father Jesus