Pastor’s Corner for the Solemnity of the Ascension of our Lord, Year A, by Rev. Fr. Nobert Munekani SJ
At the end of this 40-day period, Jesus ascended into heaven marking the end of his time on earth. We call this the Ascension. The reality of Christ’s Ascension is so important that the creeds of Christianity all affirm, in the words of the Apostles’ Creed, that “He ascended into heaven, sits at the right hand of God the Father almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead.” The denial of the Ascension is as grave a departure from Christian teaching as is the denial of Christ’s Resurrection.
Christ’s bodily Ascension foreshadows our own entrance into Heaven not simply as souls, after our death, but as glorified bodies, after the resurrection of the dead at the Final Judgment. In redeeming mankind, Christ not only offered salvation to our souls but began the restoration of the material world itself to the glory that God intended before Adam’s fall.
The Ascension of Jesus Christ is meaningful for several reasons:
It signaled the end of His earthly ministry. God the Father had lovingly sent His Son into the world at Bethlehem, and now the Son was returning to the Father. The period of human limitation was at an end.
-It signified success in His earthly work. All that He had come to do, He had accomplished.
– It marked the return of His heavenly glory. Jesus’ glory had been veiled during His sojourn on earth, with one brief exception at the Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-9).
– It symbolized His exaltation by the Father (Ephesians 1:20-23). The One with whom the Father is well pleased (Matthew 17:5) was received up in honor and given a name above all names (Philippians 2:9).
-It allowed Him to prepare a place for us (John 14:2).
It indicated the beginning of His new work as High Priest (Hebrews 4:14-16) and Mediator of the New Covenant (Hebrews 9:15).
-It set the pattern for His return. When Jesus comes to set up the Kingdom, He will return just as He left-literally, bodily, and visibly in the clouds (Acts 1:11; Daniel 7:13-14; Matthew 24:30; Revelation 1:7).
For the sick
Let us continue to pray for the sick members of our parish especially Benedicta Ngwebelele, Joyce Xaba and Andrew Ledwaba.
Fr. N. Munekani SJ