Tomorrow is the fortieth day of Easter Season, Ascension Day, one of the seven principal feasts of the Episcopal Church. The mystery of Christ’s Ascension, commemorated on this day, is also recognized in the name of our parish.
The Ascension is the subject of two common misunderstandings. In his Ascension, our Lord did not shed his body or his human nature as though It were a winter coat. Instead, he continues as one person, both divine
and human. He ascended as an embodied, glorified human being.
The Ascension is misunderstood if it is seen simply as a departure, an exit.
Jesus does not so much leave as he becomes present and accessible in a new way. God is everywhere, all the time. With the Ascension, God incarnate becomes present everywhere, all the time. This mystery means that the universe, all creation becomes “christified” and “humanized.”
So Christ is now available to us in all circumstances, whether they are marked by joy or sorrow. We can go forth each morning to encounter Jesus Christ concealed in all of life, absolutely all of life, for he waits for us there.
The Rev. Charles Hoffacker is a retired priest of the Diocese of Washington