Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

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Homily 160 – Ascension

I Am With You Always

There is more to reality than what we experience in the material world. Many things are very real that are beyond our senses. Today we celebrate the day when Jesus Ascended into heaven and left this material world. Yet, as he was leaving, he promised that “I am with you always.” As the Church fathers put it, the Christ of history is now present in mystery. Sometimes we think that the apostles had it better because they experienced Christ physically present in the world. The truth is that the presence of Christ which we experience today is every bit as real, more real in fact.

The Second Vatican Council taught that the presence of Christ can be experienced today through the Word of Sacred Scripture, through the Sacraments, the person of priest, and especially through the Eucharist. When we realize that Jesus is with us always, we are no longer tied to just one physical place as the apostles were. Now we are ready for mission. Jesus’ last words to the apostles were instructions to “Go!” So at the end of Mass, after we have been filled with the presence of Christ, we too are told to “Go!” As we are sent we hear Jesus say to us as he did to the apostles, “Behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.”

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