Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord
May 8, 2016 – Year C
Readings: Acts 1:1-11 / Ps 47 / Eph 1:17-23 / Lk 24:46-53
by Rev. Salvador Añonuevo, Pastor
To all mothers, godmothers, foster mothers, adoptive mothers, stepmothers, spiritual mothers and those who fill the role of mother – Happy Mother’s Day. This is something that all of us without exception have in common. Regardless of who we are or where we were born, we were all nourished, loved and cherished unconditionally for nine months in our mother’s womb.
May crowning, the special celebration of crowning our statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary, has long been a tradition by which we honor our spiritual mother, just as we honor our earthly mothers.
The history of our church tells us that, after our Lord’s Ascension into heaven, the Blessed Mother remained with His disciples. As any mother would do, she was there during the most trying moments of their lives and ministry to give them comfort and hope. Even after her Assumption into heaven, she would appear to her children whenever they were in trouble. The stories of her apparitions in Fatima, Lourdes, and as our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico are testaments to this truth.
Today we are celebrating the feast of the Ascension of our Lord. We prayed in the opening prayer, “Gladden us with holy joys, almighty God, and make us rejoice with devout thanksgiving, for the Ascension of Christ your Son is our exaltation, and, where the Head has gone before in glory, the Body is called to follow in hope.” We are all members of the mystical Body of Christ.
Today’s feast of the Ascension reminds us of the great news of our eternal destiny in heaven. It gives us hope and a sense of direction. All of us have different challenges in life, but that is the nature of life. We also know and believe that we are not the only ones facing difficulties in life; everyone is dealing with various day-to-day trials. In fact, most of us are old enough to have a life history of daily difficulties. If we look back we will realize we have already overcome many of life’s obstacles.
My mother used to tell me, “It is good to learn from your mistakes, and you should; but it is much better to learn from your successes.” She has also told me (many, many times), “Don’t worry; because worrying is an insult to God. Just do your best and let God do the rest.” Every time I look at her picture on my iphone or on my laptop, I am reminded of her words of encouragement.
All of us have learned a lot from our mothers, and we should remember the lessons they taught us. Most of all we should keep in mind that God’s mother is also our mother. Every time we see her picture or image – here in church or at home – or hold a rosary, may we always remember the inspiring words she told us at the marriage at Cana: “Do whatever Jesus tells you.” If we follow her advice, everything in our life – both in this life on earth and in the next life – will be just fine.