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Article: The Ascension of the Lord

The Ascension of the Lord - VENXARA®

The Ascension of the Lord

The Ascension of the Lord refers to the entry of Jesus’ humanity into Divine Glory in God’s heavenly domain.

By Jesus’ humanity we mean the human body and soul the Son of God united to His Nature as God at the moment He took flesh in the womb of the Holy Virgin Mary. That moment when “the word became flesh” is called the Incarnation. By Nature, the Church means “what something is.” Our human nature consists of a human body and a soul that is capable of thought (called intellect or “reason”) and of making choices (called “will” or love). The Son of God added both a soul and body to Himself at His Incarnation, and it is this “human nature” that was exalted at Jesus’ Ascension into glory.

The Ascension occurred 40 days after His Resurrection on Easter Sunday. At His Ascension, the Lord Jesus ascended body and soul into heaven. The Ascension took place in broad daylight on the Mount of Olives, in the presence of His Apostles and disciples. The Lord Jesus gave the Apostles and disciples His final instructions and promised to be with them and us until the end of time. Then He raised his hands and continued to bless them as He ascended into the heavens by His own power, until a cloud received Him from their sight.

The observance of this feast is of great antiquity. Saint Augustine says that it is of Apostolic origin, and he speaks of it in a way that shows it was the universal observance of the Church long before his time. Frequent mention of it is made in the writings of Saint John Chrysostom, Saint Gregory of Nyssa, and in the Constitution of the Apostles.

The Latin terms used for the feast, ascensio and, occasionally, ascensa, signify that Christ was raised up by His own powers, and it is from these terms that the holy day gets its name. Jesus Christ, the head of the Church, precedes us into the Father's glorious kingdom so that we, the members of His Body, may live in the hope of one day being with Him forever.

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