Reflection 2nd June 2019

A Reflection for the Feast of the Ascension

LK: 24: 46-53 ( )

This Sunday, as we listen to the Acts of the Apostles and the Gospel of Luke, we celebrate Christ’s Ascension. The earthly mission and ministry of Jesus are now over, and He is now returning to ‘Abba’ (Father).

Jesus now entrusts his friends and followers to carry on his work of proclaiming and spreading the Kingdom of God.

This is a very different scene to the Good Friday experience of Jesus’ death and burial.  This scene is a celebration of life. Both Ascension accounts in today’s readings continue to offer us hope as we face challenging times in today’s world.

The Gospel scene points to the gift of faith. Faith offers us a perspective in life that allows us to see situations with a different perspective.  The faith lens is not about certainty as articulated by some people, rather faith is a decision to believe even at times of great uncertainty.

Today as a community of faith, we too are called by Christ and sent out (missioned) just as these first Christians were. We are asked to proclaim the Kingdom of God, and like them, we too are strengthened by the Holy Spirit. We are Christ’s witnesses today in our homes, with our neighbours and in our parish community. We are called and challenged by Jesus not only to hear the Good News, but to do whatever we can to share it with others we meet.

Pope Francis has a wonderful insight into mission:“Mission is that dynamic that leads you to be a neighbour to others to share the gifts you have received.” 

We do this through the quality of our daily lives in how we speak to each other and treat each other. As St. Francis of Assisi reminds us, ‘we must use every means possible to proclaim the Gospel and if we have to, we will have to use words.’

Mr. Ronan Barry – Ronan works with the Identity, Faith & Mission Office attached to Spiritan schools in Ireland. His areas of involvement include engagement with school charities, ethos-development, pastoral care, religious education and sacramental preparation.