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SOLEMNITY OF THE ASCENSION OF THE LORD, MAY 12, 2024




GOSPEL Mk 16:15-20


Jesus said to his disciples:

“Go into the whole world

and proclaim the gospel to every creature.

Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved;

whoever does not believe will be condemned.

These signs will accompany those who believe:

in my name they will drive out demons,

they will speak new languages.

They will pick up serpents with their hands,

and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not harm them.

They will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”


So then the Lord Jesus, after he spoke to them,

was taken up into heaven

and took his seat at the right hand of God.

But they went forth and preached everywhere,

while the Lord worked with them

and confirmed the word through accompanying signs.


REFLECTION:


"Ascension" means the experience of continuing closeness that becomes a source of lasting joy (Pope Benedict XVI, 2011, p.281). (1)


Since this year, today is also Mother’s Day, I dedicate this reflection to Mother Mary. We go to Jesus through Mary as she always keeps us close to Him.


In Fatima, while walking on my knees for the first time, I noticed gentle footsteps walking beside me; the pain in my knees subsided as though I was on clouds. I can see the edge of a divine white gown as tears welled up. I could not lift my head to see who was walking beside me; a wretched creature like myself is not worthy to face the Queen of Heaven and Earth. A montage of the dark moments of my life flashed through my mind.


One significant memory was coming home from work on a Saturday morning. It rained on the way back, so I was soaked by the rain, exhausted, and famished. I opened my secured apartment door, shocked that someone had broken in, and cleaned out my home. I only had my keys, work pass, and mobile phone. My mobile phone was out of battery, I couldn't charge it; the charger - was stolen. I couldn't dry myself; towels, clothes, the hair dryer, and blankets - stolen. I opened the fridge to get something to eat; all the contents - stolen. I couldn't go buy food; money and bank cards - were stolen. So I sat there shivering, alone, exhausted, and confused. I have nothing. I could do nothing except pray. Unexpectedly, a warm embrace wrapped me with a glimmer of joy; an acceptance of what had happened washed over me. Back then, I didn't know where that warmth came from; now I know that it was Mother Mary who consoled me. Isn't it amazing what a warm hug from your loving mother can do?

We pray for all mothers that they may grow close to Jesus through Mary.


Reference: Pope Benedict XVI (2011) Jesus of Nazareth. from the entrance into Jerusalem to the resurrection. San Francisco, CA: Ignatius Press.



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