for Sunday, May 12, 2013
Jesus is taken up. For us it could mean that Jesus is taken away. Even
though Jesus promises to be with us always, we can feel His absence from
time to time. It is not easy to imagine how his early followers felt.
They had known Him as a flesh and blood human being. They had known Him as
someone dead and most had lost hope. Then they knew Him as alive and risen
from the dead. Then He goes away once more but tells them that He is with
Our faith is based on the faith of the apostles and on that of the early
believers. They knew each one of these realities and at the end believed
in Him completely. Others thought that they were crazy but some came to
believe because of their testimony.
The author of the Acts of the Apostles today tells us: I dealt with all
that Jesus did and taught until the day he was taken up, after giving
instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen.
He presented himself alive to them by many proofs after he had suffered,
appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God.
This is one of the primary witnesses to the Resurrection of Jesus. You and
I must examine such testimony and decide if we believe it or not. Lots of
us believe, but not very profoundly. The invitation is to let the reality
of faith transform us entirely. It is not magic. You and I must come to
know the Lord Jesus through what has been written about Him and through
what is handed down in the Church about him.
In the depth of our hearts we long to see the Lord. We long to meet Him
personally and to let His love transform us. Sometimes fear holds us back.
Sometimes a healthy skepticism is part of our lives. Yet over and over we
are invited: cast your cares on the Lord and He will support you. Trust
in the Lord and do good.
The Letter to the Ephesians today tells us that God the Father has placed
all of creation in the hands of the Lord Jesus. This repeats what we must
come to know from the depths of our being: Jesus is Lord, Jesus is God.
The Gospel of Luke today recounts the Ascension of Jesus. The disciples
are filled with joy and delight, even as they miss the Lord. They have
trusted in His word and know that He must return to the Father so that the
Holy Spirit will come and guide us in all things.
Let us ask today for this gift of the Holy Spirit to be present in our
lives in such a way that we are completely transformed in the mystery of
faith and walk each day in the path of the Lord. Christ is risen! Christ
is ascended! Come, Holy Spirit.
Readings of the day:
First Reading: Acts 1.1-11
Second Reading: Ephesians 1.17-23
Gospel: Luke 24.46-53
Reflections are available for the following Sundays: