The Ascension

The ascension of Christ.
The ascension of Christ.

The Rosary,” wrote Blessed Pope John Paul II, “precisely because it starts with Mary’sown experience, is an exquisitely contemplative prayer. Without this contemplative dimension, it would lose its meaning.”

Pope Paul VI wrote that “without [this contemplation,] the Rosary is a body without a soul, and its recitation is in danger of becoming a mechanical repetition of formulas and of going counter to the warning of Christ: ‘And in praying do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do; for they think that they will be heard for their many words’ (Mt 6:7).’”

Because of this, it is vital that Christians familiarize themselves with the Scriptures in order to meditate on the mysteries of the life of Christ.

Below is the second glorious mystery. To see other mysteries, click here.

The Ascension (Mk 16:19)

After his resurrection, Jesus remained on earth for forty days (Acts 1:3). After commanding his disciples to “go…and make disciples of all nations,” (Mt 28:19) he ascended into heaven, taking his seat at the right hand of the Father.

Insight

When Jesus walked the earth, he declared, “when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself” (Jn 12:32). The Catechism explains that, “[t]he lifting up of Jesus on the cross signifies and announces his lifting up by his Ascension into heaven, and indeed begins it. Jesus Christ, the one priest of the new and eternal Covenant, ‘entered, not into a sanctuary made by human hands. . . but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf.’” (CCC 662; Heb 9:24).

In doing this Jesus fulfills the prophet Daniel’s vision, “to him was given dominion and glory and kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him; his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed” (Dan 7:14).

 Personal Application

The mystery of the ascension of our Lord reminds and encourages us to rely on the peace which Christ offers us. Shortly before his ascension our Lord tells us, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid” (Jn 14:27).

Here Jesus warns us that the peace the world offers does not satisfy. We need to remain detached, therefore, from earthly possessions which do not ultimately satisfy.

We were made for Heaven and our Lord and Savior has told us, “In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?

And when I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also” (Jn 14:2-3).

3 thoughts on “The Ascension

  1. So I have a question: If you saw your beloved, back-from-the-dead “leader” levitate off of the ground until he is swallowed up into a cloud, to never be seen again, by you or anyone else on planet earth, would that be something you might include in your one and only “gospel” about him???

    Yet Mark, the first gospel written (the original, not the altered versions), Matthew, and John say NOTHING about an Ascension! The ONLY person who mentions an Ascension (in his two books, Luke and Acts) is someone who tells us in the first chapter of Luke that he is NOT an eyewitness to any of these events; that he obtained this information, at best, second hand!

    So we are asked to believe that Matthew and John, two alleged eyewitnesses to both the Resurrection and the Ascension, say not ONE word about this fantastic, supernatural event, but someone who admits that he was *not* an eyewitness is telling us the factual details of a real, historical, law-of-gravity-defying event???

    Give me a break! This is a legend, and nothing more.

    1. He has been seen again, many times, but since something is not written in the Gospels about these incidents than to your stated way of thinking it cannot be true. Is it not possible to you, that after seeing many miraculous things, many not written in any of the Gospels, rather written in Acts and the letters, as well as passed down by word of mouth (we call that tradition), that this particular miracle did not fit the narrative these other writers sought? Luke is the only one who thought the narrative of Jesus’s birth was noteworthy too for that matter. The best the others do is mention his lineage and the fact that he was born.

      I have a question for you. How do you live day to day without paralyzing fear without belief in life after death? How could you ride in a car, or climb on your roof to clean the gutters? Any second you, in your belief system, will cease to exist. The world, as far as you are aware, will cease to exist. How can you face a sore throat for fear of a fatal illness?

      I suppose you believe in the Big Bang theory for the creation of the universe too. That one clarifies the fallacy of atheistic thinking. Atheists think that it is easier to believe that “first there was nothing, and then BANG, there was something.” How is that easier to believe? To me that seems ludicrous. Atheists, in my experience so perhaps not you, in reality believe in God on some level, but belief in God then requires they take themselves off of the alter. And humility is hard for all of us to do. We all would rather place ourselves and our desires above all else. This is why the old saying “there are no atheists in foxholes.”

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