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.


  1. I always look forward to Lent because it is a time of cleaning out the soul. Then I look forward to Easter season because of all the rejoicing and celebration. Then I look forward to Ordinary time for a time to just be ordinary. No big celebrations, etc. just a time to do ordinary things. Of course, by temperament, I am a Martha, so a time to just be a Martha and not feel like I should be doing something special is good for me. I look at Ordinary time like the time right after a big party, when you just relax, pick up the house, go back to regular meals, and life is a little quieter.

  2. You know, I usually feel the same way. Certainly after Christmastide I enjoy the ordinariness of those few weeks before lent starts up! But this year I just wanted to cling to that Easter feeling. It's been an exceptionally beautiful spring here (when it wasn't raining), so I kind of wanted that to go on forever as well. But I know what you mean about after a party. Quiet is good too.

  3. I love "I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God."

    I'll be sad about Ordinary time too. I'll miss singing the Regina Caeli. Just this week Ben has started to sing along.

  4. Aw.....I'd love to hear Ben sing the Regina Caeli with you. I've always wondered that there doesn't seem to be a chant setting for the regular Angelus.

  5. "I've always wondered that there doesn't seem to be a chant setting for the regular Angelus."

    No kidding! I think the kids would get into the Angelus much more if it were chanted.

    I don't have a recording of Ben, but here's Bella singing it a couple of years ago. Proof that a 3 year-old can learn chant. In Latin no less.