Ascension Thursday

A number of paintings depicting the Ascension feature two feet at the top of the canvas, sometimes over a group of disciples staring up at them, sometimes including heavenly hosts awaiting the Lord's return to the Father's right hand. Dali's contemporary rendering is above, Kulmbach's classical version is below, Laura James' is at the post's end.

You can find the scriptures for Ascension Day here.  (See the previous post to determine when Ascension is celebrated where you live.) An old Preface prayer for Ascension day offers a brief theological summary of what the Church celebrates on this 40th day after Easter. The theology is in the verbs!

Father, all-powerful and ever-living God, we do well always and everywhere to give you thanks and praise.

Today the Lord Jesus, the king of glory, the conqueror of sin and death, ascended to heaven while the angels sang his praises.

Christ, the mediator between God and humankind, judge of the world and Lord of all, has passed beyond our sight, not to abandon us but to be our hope. Christ is the beginning, the head of the Church; where he has gone, we hope to follow.

The joy of the resurrection and ascension renews the whole world, while the choirs of heaven sing for ever to your glory: Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of hosts, heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.

Image: Laura James


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