Today’s readings describe the Ascension of the Lord Jesus into his Heavenly glory after promising the apostles the Holy Spirit as their source of Heavenly power, and commanding them to bear witness to him by their lives and by preaching the good News throughout the world.

The ascended Jesus promised the Apostles, “I am with you always; yes, to the end of time,” and keeps that promise through the indwelling Holy Spirit. Today’s Feast is a celebration of Jesus’ glory after his suffering and death – a glory in which we also hope to share.

Leonardo da Vinci had started to work on a large canvas in his studio. For a while he worked at it – choosing the subject, planning the perspective, sketching the outline, applying the colors, with his own inimitable genius. Then suddenly he stopped working on it. Summoning one of his talented students, the master invited him to complete the work.

The horrified student protested that he was both unworthy and unable of completing the great painting which his master had begun. But da Vinci silenced him. “Will not what I have done inspire you to do your best?” Jesus our Master began to spread the Good News two thousand years ago by what he said and did and, supremely, by what he suffered. Jesus illustrated his message and has left us to finish the picture.

Will Jesus’ life not inspire us to finish the picture? This is the message of the Ascension.

Submitted by Fr. Joseph Dovari