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Resources for Ascension Day

Ascension

Let us pray (in silence) [that we may consciously live in the presence of the Risen Christ]

pause

Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that we, who believe your only-begotten Son, [only-begotten One]
our redeemer,
ascended this day to heaven,
may also in heart and mind there continually dwell;
through Jesus Christ
who is alive with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
Amen.

The above is my reworking for my Book of Prayers in Common in which I seek to provide a set of collects with history and commentary.

Christians have been praying the above prayer on the Feast of the Ascension for over 12 centuries – shared through the Reformation into the Roman Missal and Books of Common Prayer. Surprisingly, it was removed from Roman Catholic rites in 1970, but then restored again in 2002.

For commentary and reflection: Ascension

The Easter Candle continues burning through to the Day of Pentecost.

Any comments, suggestions, resources, of course, are welcome below in the comments section.

Ascension Day to the Day of Pentecost is the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity in the Southern Hemisphere. Many seem to miss the irony that Christians cannot even agree when to pray for Christian Unity!

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2 Responses to Resources for Ascension Day

  1. More and more, as I think about what “heaven” means, I want to reject the idea that it’s a geographical location in the sky. Yet the term “ascension day” reinforces this idea that there are two separate places: (1) earth and (2) heaven, and that one has to go “up” to get to the latter. If god exists outside of place and time, it seems we need better language to convey this concept.

    I haven’t come up with anything yet, but I’m thinking:
    – accession
    – incorporation
    – integration

    …something along those lines?

    Is this too pedantic? My goal is simply to process what this day celebrates – Jesus loosed his physical bonds and became impalpable and ubiquitous.

    • Thanks, Jonathan. I tend to come at this from the other direction. Ascension is a reminder, invitation, & challenge – through the literal being so clearly absurd – that all religious language is metaphorical. In fact all language about anything really important is metaphorical. [The danger with abandoning the clearly unliteral story is that we might end up giving the impression that what we replace it with is not metaphorical.] Easter Season Blessings.

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About This Site Welcome to this ecumenical website of resources and reflections on liturgy, spirituality, and worship for individuals and communities. It is run by Rev. Bosco Peters.

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