Skip to comments.The Rev. Peter Toon: On "The Great Forty Days" (Easter to Ascension)
Posted on 05/26/2006 5:22:20 PM PDT by sionnsar
For a thoughtful perspective on Ascension Day (which we observed yesterday), see Fr. Peter Toon's The Great Forty Days: from Easter Day to Ascension Day. As usual Fr. Toon is worth reading:
Previously the angelic hosts and choirs alone praised and magnified the Holy Trinity with their, Holy, Holy, Holy, but now joined to them was the human voice of the exalted Priest, Son of Man and Mediator. And through, in, by, and with him came also from now onwards a constant procession of redeemed and sanctified human beings, first the saints from the Israel of the Old Covenant and then the martyrs and saints of the Church of the New Covenant. So now in heaven the heavenly choir has both angelic and human voices and all joyfully sing to the one glory of the one God, who is the Blessed, Holy and Undivided Trinity.As I said, Fr. Toon is always worth reading and I appreciate his sharing these thoughts with us.
Let us rejoice and be exceedingly glad that Heaven was eternally changed, was marvelously developed and expanded, through the Arrival and Coronation of Jesus, Messiah, Savior and Lord. It is now the most holy sphere and place whose entry is through Jesus, the Way, the Truth and the Life and in this place there are many mansions for the multitude of redeemed human beings.
So we ask: Why, O Why is the Festival of the Ascension so neglected today! It is the Festival without which the other Festivals cannot fulfill their meaning and purpose. For unless the Lord Jesus is exalted into heaven, there is no salvation, redemption, and beatification for human sinners whom he came to save.
Let us not talk of the great fifty days as do modern progressive liturgists and the clergy they have influenced, for this regrettably has become usually a way of neglecting or downplaying the Festival of the Ascension. Rather let us talk of FORTY plus TEN days so that we distinguish in the Christian Year the difference between the period from Easter to Ascension from that of Ascension to Whit-Sunday (Pentecost)!
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