The Ascension of the Lord

May 16, 2021

Today we celebrate the Ascension of the Lord. Until recently the Church celebrated this feast on the 40th day after Easter. Now today’s celebration has been transferred to Sunday, and replaces the 7th Sunday of Easter. In St. Luke’s version, in today’s first reading from Acts, Luke summarizes the Easter event and all the ways Jesus appeared to the disciples, instructing them and showing them the mission that He would entrust to them. He then gathered them together and told them, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, throughout Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” In our Gospel we hear this event from St. Mark. Jesus says to the disciples, “Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved…” Jesus then tells them that mighty signs will accompany them. They will continue His mission and bring the Good News to all the corners of the earth. When He finishes Jesus is then taken up to heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father where He lives forever to intercede for us. The Ascension of the Lord speaks to all of us as we are reminded of our primary mission to be witnesses of Jesus to all the corners of the earth where we live.

Next weekend we will come to the fulfillment of our Easter season with the Solemnity of Pentecost. 50 days after Easter we celebrate the sending of the Holy Spirit as Jesus promised to be ‘another’ Advocate who will renew and animate the hearts of His faithful, providing them with strength to live our discipleship. This week let us pray for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon us and all in our parish that we might be about fulfilling our mission and witnessing to Jesus each and every day. Let’s also plan to join in the Pentecost celebration and wear RED, the color of the Holy Spirit.

You will notice today on the front cover of the bulletin that we are beginning to promote our new Parish Mission Statement. This will figure prominently on each bulletin to help us to begin to remind us that we, parishioners of St. Luke the Evangelist Parish are a community of  “Intentional Disciples” who are striving to know, love, and serve the Lord in all that we do. Let’s all incorporate it in our endeavors to make ours a place where all recognize our identity, our mission, and our dreams for a vibrant community of faith.

In just a couple of weeks, May 31st, we will celebrate Memorial Day here at St. Luke, A few years ago we began a tradition of celebrating our summer holidays with “Mass on the Grass.” We gather on McMahon field at 9:00am with our sister parish, Immaculate Conception, Maplewood for Mass al fresco. Please mark your calendars and plan to join us, (weather permitting). In the event of inclement weather Mass will be in Church.

Finally today, we still have a few of the Pro-Life signs, “Keep All Life Sacred.” If you are interested in purchasing one, please contact the Parish Office, 644-2144. Cost is $5.00 and includes the sign and metal stand. They will also be available for purchase after the Mass on the Grass.  If you live in an apartment, you can always place one in a window. As Pro-Life Catholics we promote the sanctity of ALL human life from conception to natural death.

God Bless! Happy Ascension!

Please continue praying 3 Hail Marys.

Fr. Pete