Thursday, June 2, 2011

Ascension Thursday- It's all in the antiphons

I'm always sorry to see the Easter season go, and although the feast of the Ascension is a glorious climax, there's still this feeling of "Oh, no!  He's going away! Back to boring old ordinary time."  And Pentecost, similarly, seems to be more like deployment  than a festival:"Okay, fun's over. Get going. Go forth. Make disciples of all nations. You've got the seven gifts now, so no excuses. You can do this."

Nonetheless, I've been taking solace in the gorgeous antiphons of the liturgy, starting last night with Evening Prayer I. They are so worth dwelling on as you go for a walk or go about chores.  Just pick one favorite and come back to it all day.

-I came forth from the Father and have come into the world; now I leave the world to return to the Father.

-After he spoke to his disciples, the Lord Jesus ascended into heaven where he is seated at the right hand of the Father.

-No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man, who is in heaven.

-I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.

-Sing to God, sing psalms to his name, make a path for him who rides high above the clouds.

-Men of Galilee, why are you looking up into the sky? This Jesus who has been taken up to heaven  will return in the same way.

-Do not leave us orphans, but send us the Father's promised gift of the Spirit of truth.