Tomorrow as you know the Church marks Ascension Thursday and I simply wanted to comment on it and we will “talk” more about it with the Sunday liturgy, homily and prayers. Now whether Jesus’ time on this physical earth ended on a Thursday or not is not really the most important thing to keep in mind as it is what this piece of religious history signifies for us as his followers.
With this feast, Jesus is basically saying, my physical work is done and now, I am entrusting my mission to you because I believe in you, love you and won’t “leave you orphans.” “Don’t be afraid, I am with you always!”
So, there you have it friends! This coming Sunday will be the 7th and final Sunday of Easter with the feast of Pentecost coming the following Sunday–Jesus will send his very Spirit to guide and show us the way. With the Spirit comes courage, strength, and confidence. The seven gifts of the Spirit are wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety and fear of God.
I would say that these gifts are basically about coming to know that we are first loved by God and are called to love God in return, which is about finding time to spend with consciousness each day of God–we call this prayer, who is our source and being (piety). The Spirit of Jesus gives us knowledge and wisdom and helps us to revere (fear) God in each other and all the universe. Let us ask this Spirit to be truly with us as we learn how to become better followers of our brother, Jesus. –Pastor Kathy