Christ rules all things for his Church. In the early 700s AD, there lived an English churchman known to history as the Venerable Bede. He was the great teacher of the middle ages, the man who divided history into AD and BC, the first great historian of the English language and a devout man of God. On May 25, 735 AD, on the great Ascension Vigil, Bede finished his translation of the Gospel of St. John into Old English. Then, on that day of Ascension, he died. From his deathbed, the Teacher of the Middle Ages spoke the words that have become the Prayer of the Day on Ascension. This beautiful prayer sets the tone for the day, beginning with a note of triumph and ending with a supplication for the Spirit and his work.
sermon Lesson: luke 24:44-53
Ascension marks the coronation of our ProphetPriest as King. Today we see his enthronement in glory and power to rule all things for the Church. Even at this late date, the disciples failed to understand Jesus’ mission. So Christ opened the Scriptures to them to show once more that this was the Christ as prophesied. He told them, “This was the way it had to be! And you, you are now wellinformed witnesses of the fact that I am both Lord and Christ.” Finally, his disciples understood: Christus est Deus. There was no more doubting, no more fearing, no more worry. Christ is God. They worshipped the God-Man and watched him depart with his hands raised in unending blessing. No wonder they went home rejoicing! No longer would they hide behind locked doors; no longer would they cower; no longer would they fear the Sanhedrin. Instead they would fill the temple with public praise, because Christus est Deus! Their rabbi, their friend, their brother…he was God and ruled all things for his Church.
Artwork: Ian M. Welch. © 2014. All rights reserved. (paramentics.com)