Read the meditation on the feast of the Ascension of the Lord
The feast of the Ascension of the Lord is celebrated in Italy on the first Sunday following the forty days after Easter of the Resurrection.
TO Jerusalem, the summit of Mount Oliveto is considered by the faithful to be the place where Jesus had ascended to heaven. Here, in 376, a building was erected and every year the Friars Minor celebrate vespers on Ascension Day and the divine office during the feast.
According to the Gospel of Mark:
"The Sir Jesus, having spoken with them, was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God”. Mk 16.19.
The Evangelist Luke writes:
“Then he led them to Bethany and, raising his hands, blessed them. As he blessed them, he withdrew from them and was carried up to heaven." Lk 24.50.
Again, Luke in the Acts of Apostles writes that Jesus is assumed into heaven, after appearing to the Apostles following theResurrection:
“Having said this, as they watched him,he was lifted up and a cloud took him away from their eyes. They were staring at the sky as he went away, when behold, two men in white clothes presented themselves to them and said: «Men of Galilee, why are you looking at the sky? This Jesuswho was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven." Acts 1,9-11.
The ascension of the Lord is amystery of faithclosely linked to the descent, realized in the Incarnation. Christ, the one who comes from Father returns to Him:
“I came out of Father and I came into the world;now I leave the world again and go to the Father”. Jn 17:28.
Jesus, before the Jewish court, during his passion he is interrogated by the high priest, he replies by quoting Psalm 110 on the priesthood of the Messiah:
“Are you the Christ, The Son of the Benedict?”. Jesus replied: "I am! And you will see the Son of the man seated at the right hand of the Power and to come with the clouds of heaven". Mk 14,61-62.
The ascension of the Lord it is connected to the paschal mysteryand in the Trinitarian life and participates in the energy of the Resurrection, the triumph of life over death. Jesus back to Father and send thehis Consoling Spiritwith the hope of reaching it one day:it is the expectation of the day of Pentecost.
The term ascension as an ascent, spiritual elevation of man towards God. The ascension as a spiritual approach to the Lord, as a journey of purification and ascent towards the peaks of holiness where man and woman are called to live not according to the "flesh", that is, according to the self-centered and selfish instinct but according to freedom ofSon of God. In fact, "where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom". 2 Cor 3, 17.
The fatigue and sweat of the climb effort for us men are not canceled but the view of the summit that illuminates, gives strength and vigor to the ordeal of the journey.
Christian asceticism calls for a continuous purification of thelove, an unceasing perseverance in faith, and a constant reinvigoration of hope. It is effort and training, a continuous exercise of dying to the old man and to the sin within us to reach authentic freedom and be reborn from above, to be new creatures in Christ. Cf Col 3, 9-10.
He says Pope francesco in his homily of April 17, 2013:
“As St. John affirms in his first letter, He is our advocate: what a beautiful feeling this is! When one is called by the judge or goes to court, the first thing he does is seek out a lawyer to defend him. We have one, who always defends us, defends us from the snares of the devil, defends us from ourselves, from our sins! Dearest brothers and sisters, we have this advocate: we are not afraid to go to him to ask for forgiveness, to ask for a blessing, to ask for mercy! …
The Ascension of Jesus to heaven let us know then this reality so consoling for our journey: in Christ, True God and true man, our humanity was brought at God; He has opened the way for us; He is like the rope leader when climbing a mountain, who has reached the top and draws us to himself leading us to God. If we entrust our lives to Him, if we let ourselves be guided by Him, we are certain that we are in safe hands, in hand of our saviorof our lawyer".
source © vatican.com
Last Updated: May 19, 2023 9:51 by Remigio Ruberto