by Fr W. Nkomo
1st reading: Acts 1: 1-11
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 47: 2-3, 6-9
2nd reading: Ephesians 1: 17-23
Gospel: Matthew 28: 16-20
The Ascension of the Lord is the fulfilment of Christ’s work of salvation, that is, humanity now belongs entirely to God
The book of the Acts of the Apostles tells us that after Jesus had given them his last command “you shall be my witnesses in Jerusalem and all in Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8) Jesus was taken up whilst they looked on. The Ascension of the Lord marks the fulfilment of salvation that started with the incarnation. That is God has found a place in humanity (Incarnation) and humanity has found a place in heaven (Ascension). Both the immortality of the soul and body is proclaimed here because as we will hear in the preface Jesus was never separated from our condition, but in his humanity he took each one of us with him into the intimacy with the Father thus revealed the final destination of our earthly pilgrimage.
The image of the disciples looking up to heaven when Christ was taken up clearly depicts the disposition of everyone who believes in Jesus. You and I should realise that we now belong entirely to God. As such we are to carry out the mission as handed over to us by him whom we follow to: to imitate him and make disciples of all nations, through the power of the Holy Spirit baptise those who believe in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. You and I are called by the Lord to continue teaching those who have been baptised the importance of observing all of his commands, for this is the work of God. Now like Christ we can say I am in the Father through the Ascension of Christ and the Father is in me through the incarnation. Humanity is in heaven through Christ.
Dear brothers and Sisters, the Ascension teaches us that in Christ our humanity is brought to the heights of God; therefore through our prayer Heaven and Earth are united. It is for this reason that today I invite each one of you to raise our prayer to the Lord with confidence in Christ. You have no need to be afraid to tell God about how you see your relationship with him and he will fix it for you if that is what it needs. You now have a place in heaven thanks to the Ascension.