• Wartakanlah Injil kepada segala makhluk.
    Mrk 16:15

  • 你们往普天下去, 向一切受造物宣传福音
    谷 16:15

  • Everything is possible by the power of the Holy Spirit’s Grace.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • Segala sesuatu menjadi mungkin dalam kekuatan karunia Roh Kudus.
    St. Arnold Janssen

  • 我当传教士不是为主牺牲,而是上主给我的最大恩赐
    圣福若瑟神父

  • Với sức mạnh Ân Huệ của Chúa Thánh Thần, Mọi việc đều có thể được.
    St Arnoldus Janssen

  • Preach the Gospel to the whole creation./Anh em hãy đi khắp tứ phương thiên hạ, loan báo Tin Mừng cho mọi loài thọ tạo
    Mk 16:15

  • There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit.
    1 Cor 12:4

  • And the Word became flesh and lived among us.
    Jn 1:14

  • Let the word of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you.
    Col 3:16

  • To proclaim the Good News is the first and greatest act of love of neighbour.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • 传扬天国福音是第一且最大的爱近人行动
    圣杨生•爱诺德神父

  • Có nhiều đặc sủng khác nhau, nhưng chỉ có một Thần Khí/
    1 Cor. 14:4

  • 圣言成了血肉,寄居在我们中间
    若 1:14

  • Ada rupa-rupa karunia, tetapi Roh satu
    1 Kor 12:4

Friday, 14 May 2021 19:04

Ascension of the Lord - 2021

Written by Fr Elmer Ibarra SVD

 

Feast of the Ascension of the Lord

Mark 16, 15-20

Fr Elmer Ibarra 150 BestOne of the exciting events in Track and Field is the 4 X 100 metre relay. There’s a team of four athletes and they’re standing 100 metres apart and the first athlete runs for 100 metres then they pass the baton to the next athlete and the fourth athlete gets the baton and runs straight until the finish line. The beauty of this event is not just about running fast but it’s also about coordination between runners as they pass the baton. Because if you run without the baton, then the whole team gets disqualified and there are a number of races that are decided on how the baton was passed while running very fast too.

In the gospel for today, we see how Jesus has effectively passed the baton to his disciples to continue his work. Jesus has done everything that was asked of him by his heavenly Father. He left his heavenly throne to become one of us. He was a helpless baby totally dependent on Joseph and Mary to live. He became a son to earthly parents. He became a child playing with other children. He had to obey his parents when he said, “I am doing my Father’s business”. He had experienced his highs like when he was baptised by John the Baptist. He was followed by heaps of people who wanted to hear him preach; he was able to heal hundreds if not thousands of people; he was affirmed by his heavenly Father especially when he was transfigured and conversed with Moses and Elijah. He also had his lows, when his family had to run for their lives fleeing from Herod’s soldiers who wanted to kill him, when he was misunderstood by his detractors, when he was being debated by closed-minded scribes and Pharisees.

Then you have to include the greatest act of love that Jesus did. He was arrested, betrayed, tortured, suffered a lot and eventually was crucified and died. And to top everything, he resurrected from the dead to show everyone that death and evil has no power over him. And now he has done his part. He has triumphed over sin and death. Now he is returning to the Father. He can now say “Mission Accomplished!” However, it is not finished. Jesus is passing the baton to us to continue what he has started. And this task is very important. We must be able to persevere and be faithful with the work that Jesus asked us to do until his return at the end of time.

Fortunately, as we do this task of continuing the work of Christ, we won’t be left high and dry. Jesus has promised us the following: we will be able to pick up serpents and drink deadly drinks but we won’t be harmed; we will lay hands on those who are sick and they will be healed. Well ... we should not take all these things literally. However, it has been proven that those who have worked for Christ have been protected by the Holy Spirit in so many situations. Until now there are missionaries who are working in countries where Christians are being persecuted. And so far, they have been very faithful to their task even if there are difficulties in doing these tasks. And of course, through the sacraments and sacramentals, we have healed people maybe not physically in some cases but most probably spiritually in all cases.

And not only those, but Jesus also gave us power to preach the good news to everyone by the power and the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Jesus also gave us the power to sanctify our lifestyle by living in accordance to the values of the gospel.

Jesus’ mission here on earth has finished. And yet, what he has started continues until now because of Christians like us who have taken up this work. Jesus is relying on us 21st century Christians to bring the church ever forward despite of all the challenges that we face in this post-modern and increasingly secular society. Jesus has entrusted to us this tremendous responsibility and we should do our part.

The feast of the Ascension of Jesus shows us that Jesus is now returning to where he truly belongs, at the right side of the Father. The ascension showed us how Jesus’ mission here on earth culminated. The ascension showed us what will happen to us one day when we ourselves are resurrected at the end of time.

Jesus has now passed the baton to us. It is now up to us to do our work and finish the race. But always remember that we’re not alone. Jesus may have left us physically but he remains with us wherever we are and whatever we do. And with his help, we may be able to face Jesus at the end of our lives and say to him, “Mission Accomplished.”