This weekend we commemorate Jesus’s ascension into heaven. For forty days after his resurrection, Jesus appeared to his disciples before they saw him taken up into heaven. We hear in today’s gospel that “repentance, for the forgiveness of sins, would be preached in his name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.” We are called to be missionary disciples who continue to make Jesus’s name known in our town, in our country.
Next weekend is Pentecost. We receive power through the Holy Spirit! The feast reminds me of the Mass of thanksgiving I celebrated in Coldwater the day after my ordination; nine years ago now. It was the feast of Pentecost. The fire alarm went off. Lights flashed – not quite tongues of fire, but red and startling. No sound of driving wind, but the alarm blared. It was a beautiful day all the same. This year’s Pentecost is a momentous day for our pastoral region. Over a dozen people will receive the Sacrament of Confirmation at the 11:45am Mass.
A beautiful feast shortly after Pentecost is Corpus Christi (The Most Holy Body and Blood of Jesus). Traditionally, it is celebrated on a Thursday, since Jesus instituted the Eucharist on a Thursday. In the United States, we celebrate this feast on a Sunday. That Sunday (June 23), we will again have a Eucharistic procession after the 9:15 Mass. While we do not celebrate Corpus Christi on Thursday at Mass, I have invited Fr. Ryan Ruiz who teaches at our seminary to speak about the Eucharist for members of our pastoral region. He will be at St. Peter in Chains church on Thursday, June 20 at 7pm. I am asking all who are trained to serve as extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion to attend if they are able. All are encouraged to attend.