The Ascension of the Lord
CELEBRATING A BEGINNING
We often speak of Pentecost as the beginning of the Church. The Holy Spirit comes upon the disciples, the proclamation of the Good News can now begin and be addressed to all. But every beginning takes root at a specific time. This time for the apostles is when Jesus leaves the world to go to his Father. His mission on earth accomplished, victorious over death, he can let his disciples take over. It is their turn to take the road to share this extraordinary news: Christ has died and is risen and God is closer to his children.
Ascension is the prelude to Pentecost. With his disciples on the roads of Galilee, Jesus spoke of the Father in a new way. A God who loves his children with unfailing love. During the three years they spent with him, his words took root in them and they believed he was the Father's envoy. Christ can leave, they can no longer hold back their testimony. They are the ones who will take the roads now. The Spirit they receive will guide them.
The time of the witnesses begins at that moment, and that time is also ours. As baptized Christians, we must follow the example of the first disciples who themselves followed the path Jesus opened for them. This Good News is not for us only. It is for all women and men of our land. We have to incarnate for them the face of this God of love, of that Son who has given his life because of his love for the Father. Keeping this Good News for ourselves would make it lose all its flavor and vitality. It is only by sharing it that it will transform us, regenerate us, make us feel growing joy and thanksgiving in our souls. The disciples were able to recognize this truth. We may have to rediscover it.
We have to transform this world of ours into a world where justice has its rights. A world where exclusion is no longer the norm. A world where everyone can find a place and live in peace. A world where the love of God can be shared through a compassionate look, a hand outstretched to lift up, a word to comfort and laughter so that joy is always present in the heart of life.
I have already said that assuming our mission in the Church is not easy. We must step out of ourselves and go towards the other, towards the unknown. We must forget ourselves in order to grow into a better person at the contact of the other. To take the road is to walk in anticipation of the joy of the new growth of life waiting for us at every turn of the road we take.
So, shall we start walking?
Adjointe à la Coordination pastorale