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Looking Up and Around for Jesus - Weekday Homily Video

Looking Up and Around for Jesus - Weekday Homily Video

Learn more about our faith  |  Celebrating family life  |  Ascension

The Ascension of Jesus must have been the final evidence the disciples needed from Him. In addition to the fulfillment of the Father’s plan of salvation, it was the catalyst for the passing of the torch to Jesus’ disciples. At the beginning of today’s gospel from Mark, Jesus issues a profound and challenging command: “Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature.” This command is not a mere suggestion or a limited directive.  

It is a call to action to share the good news of salvation with every person, and creature, in every corner of the world. Jesus didn’t say, “Remember what I told you, take care of yourself, and one day you will see me again.” And likewise, He didn’t say, “Proclaim the gospel to some people, people you like—within the town where you live.” 



No, Jesus sent them out to evangelize all peoples and every land. Talk about a clear and complete mission statement that underscores the universal nature of Jesus’ offer of salvation through faith, baptism, and the life that follows. 


Continued Signs from Jesus


Still, Jesus knew the Apostles and others would need continued signs of the power of His Name after His ascension. This is why Jesus combines faith with signs of healing, both physical and spiritual. These signs, which include miraculous healings and the transformation of lives, are not just random acts of power. They are tangible demonstrations of the continuing presence and power of Jesus, reinforcing the faith of His followers and confirming the truth of the gospel they proclaim.  


As I reflected and prayed about Jesus’ Ascension I recalled a scene in a parking lot outside the Dollar Store. A group gathered in a circle, released several balloons, and recorded the scene as the balloons climbed higher and higher. Every one of them kept their eyes fixed on the flight of these balloons until they were out of sight. It was then that I approached one of the men and asked the reason for them doing this. He said, Father, today is my nephew’s birthday, he passed away a few months ago, he was only five. We wanted to remember him and celebrate his birthday the way he would like. In a parallel way, those family members of the little boy remembered and prayed gazing upward to the heavens just as Jesus’ disciples on the day of His Ascension. God desires that we live lives on earth that will lead us upward in virtue and holiness…lives that will find their final destination in heaven.  


The Ascension and Hope 


One part of Jesus’ Ascension that should give us all hope is that when Jesus returned to heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father, he brought with Him our human nature. Jesus, fully human and fully Divine sits beside the Father interceding for us on earth.  

Lastly, though Jesus has reserved certain actions with the Sacraments to ordained priests and deacons, He did include all the baptized in the promise that those who invoke His Name will do great signs that bring about healing through prayer and the laying on of hands.  

My brothers and sisters, today we rejoice that our Savior has risen from the dead and ascended into heaven where He intercedes for us…with the Father. He has given us a great mission of spreading this good news, each in our way. And, we have reason to be people of hope and joy, people who gaze upward and around us, connected to God in heaven and earth and sharing His healing and loving Word with all we meet, beginning in our families. 


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About Father David Marcham

Reverend David S. Marcham is the Vice Postulator for the Cause of Venerable Patrick Peyton, and Director of the Father Peyton Guild, whose members pray for Father Peyton’s beatification and spread his message of the importance of Family Prayer. Prior to becoming a seminarian, Father David was a physical therapist and clinical instructor, serving hospital inpatients and outpatients throughout the greater Boston area for eleven years. In 1998 he heard the call to priesthood and was ordained in the Archdiocese of Boston in 2005. Father David grew up in Quincy, MA, and has fond memories of playing soccer, tennis and running track. You’re never without a friend when Father David is around, as he welcomes everyone into his circle with a smile on his face!