7th Eastern Sunday (Note & Bulletin)

The NFL playoffs of 1998 –the San Francisco 49’ers were playing the Green Bay Packers.  In the game, San Francisco’s best Receiver, Terrell Owens, was having an absolutely terrible game.  He had dropped pass after pass.  With four seconds remaining in the game, San Francisco losing by four points, there was just enough time for one more play.  When they got into the huddle, the Quarter Back, Steve Young called a passing play to Owens.  They all looked at Young and did not seem confident.  Young repeated the call to the players.  San Francisco snapped the ball, Young dropped back and threw a perfect spiral to Owens.  Owens leapt into the air, caught the ball and fell into the end zone for the winning goal.  Owens hugged Young and wept uncontrollably.  That Owens had made mistake after mistake in the game did not remove his membership as a teammate nor remove Steve Young’s confidence in Owens.

In Our faith we can often think that the mistakes we make jeopardizes our place in God’s Kingdom and limits the trust and confidence God has in us.  The Ascension however, reveals that the truth is different.  The Ascension is one of the most beautiful feast we celebrate as a Church.  It shows us in a most understandable way the trust and confidence God has in us and for us.  It seems clear that the risen Lord could have stayed on earth longer.  As God, he could have instantly established God’s Kingdom and God’s Reign.  Instead, he put his mission into the hands of some fishermen from Galilee.  Time and again the Apostles had shown that they lacked faith, that they didn’t understand all that Jesus was speaking of.  And yet, it was into their hands that the Lord had placed his mission.  

The Solemnity of the Ascension is really a proclamation of our dignity revealed through God’s love.  As St. Paul wrote in the Second Reading, “As you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints.”  The enlightenment of our hearts is our belief that our God is so loving that he never gives up on us, that he always extends a second chance.  Just like the Apostles, the Lord has put his mission of proclaiming God’s Kingdom and God’s Reign into our hands.  We may think that we are incapable and inadequate for such a call, but it is the Lord’s will revealed in scripture.  And so we push aside any doubt and unbelief for the power and mercy of God’s wisdom is calling us.  The Lord knows what he’s doing.  The power of our proclamation through God’s grace is not weakened but is strengthened.  Because when we proclaim God’s Kingdom, when we proclaim God’s Reign, we proclaim the truth that God is love and God’s love is merciful.  We proclaim that God’s has a trust and confidence in us because we are his children and we proclaim that God never writes us off.  He always has a hope in us that is born of his love for us.

God Bless, and Take Care!

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