jesus-good-shepherd-06Dear Brother and Sisters,

CaptureAscension! He goes up with shouts of joy! But why? Why couldn’t He stay with us? Why does He leave us even if He promises us His Holy Spirit?

The first reading, from the Acts of the Apostles, tells us the basic outline of what happens: The author of the Acts of the Apostles does not question what happens because he was living the mystery of what was happening. That is important for us: are we living the mystery?

Far too often we think of salvation as a sort of static reality. Instead, it is always presented as a living reality, a living relationship with God: Father, Son and Spirit. It is a participation in the mystery of Christ’s death, resurrection, ascension and sending of the Holy Spirit.

Hope and the power of God are not easily verified except in a life lived in pursuit of the mystery of God. The Gospel of John brings us right back to the actual story of the Ascension of Jesus. These are the last words of Jesus from His resurrected life on earth: behold I am sending the promise of my Father upon you; but stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high!

The Spirit is always telling us about Jesus. The Spirit does not give us a new message but confirms the message of Jesus. For our understanding of God, Jesus sends the Spirit. The ascension leads us immediately to this: Come, Holy Spirit! Fill our hearts!

Father Jesus