Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Wednesday of the Seventh Week of Easter
May 23. 2012
For many these final day of May and the Easter season bring with them many mixed emotions.  This month and the following month of June, perhaps more poignantly than the final days of each December mark the end of so many specific experiences in peoples' lives.  Graduations, weddings, moving from one location to another: these are just a few of the real life experiences that impact us in one way or another.  At a time with Mother Nature brings an explosion of colors to our landscapes in this part of the world, we experience the reality of separation and loneliness.  Children are saddened by the last days in one school and their many friends there.  Weddings bring some sadness as a daughter or son departs to begin a family  life with a marriage partner ... often away from one's family of origin.  And so on.  There are many tears at this time of the year.

There is one ending that occurs each year which many may overlook or simply forget.  This is the time of the year when we recall the end of Jesus' presence among his disciples and other close friends.  Even for us some 2000 years later, the Ascension and Pentecost signal a loneliness:  Jesus is no longer physically present on this earth.  We simply remember because five men have recounted his life in their writings we call the Gospels or letters of St. Paul.

We, like the disciples of Jesus, we are also followers of Jesus even though he did not physically walk among us anywhere on the face of the earth.  We are those whom he came to redeem.  We are those he tried to teach the Father's will.  The written words of four evangelists and St. Paul are the textbooks give to each of us so that we never forget what he taught and what he did for us.

When we reflect on the mystery of the Ascension and the gift of Pentecost, do we recognize his ending time on earth is but the beginning for each of his followers to accomplish a might obligation entrusted to us:  to go and announce the gospel!  So, what does this mean for you today?