Some Resources for Ascension Day

Today is Ascension Day, the feast when Christians commemorate Jesus’s ascension into heaven, where, in the words of the Creed, “he sits at the right hand of the Father.” It’s an event in Jesus’s life that has been hovering over (no pun intended) our Sunday readings for the last two weeks: Jesus’ claim to be “the Way, the Truth, and the Life,” and his subsequent promise that the Holy Spirit would come to be “another advocate” for his disciples, were both precipitated by his warning the disciples that he would leave them to go back to where his Father is.

I won’t be posting anything new about this feast this year, but would like to draw your attention to my post about it from 2021, “A Glorious Inheritance,” which summarizes my thoughts about the feast and its meaning well.

The Ascension is not a feast that has a lot of traction in twenty-first-century Christianity. But it’s important to remember that it was a very important idea for the first Christians. For more information about this, check out two of my posts from last Summer’s series on Ephesians, “A Question of Power, Part II” and “God’s Power for Us (Again).”

But for today, I’ll leave you with two beautiful Eastern Orthodox hymns for the feast:

O Christ God, You have ascended in Glory, granting joy to Your disciples by the promise of the Holy Spirit.
Through the blessing they were assured
that You are the Son of God, the Redeemer of the world!

When You had fulfilled the dispensation for our sake, and united earth to heaven:
You ascended in glory, O Christ our God,
not being parted from those who love You, but remaining with them and crying:
“I am with you and no one will be against you!”

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