Today is May 17, 2007. This year that date is remembered as Ascension day, the day 40 days after Easter Sunday when Jesus ascended to heaven.

Ascension Island - discovered on Ascension Day, 1503

Mark 16:9-20

Now when he rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, from whom he had cast out seven demons. 10 She went and told those who had been with him, as they mourned and wept. 11 But when they heard that he was alive and had been seen by her, they would not believe it.

12 After these things he appeared in another form to two of them, as they were walking into the country. 13 And they went back and told the rest, but they did not believe them.

14 Afterward he appeared to the eleven themselves as they were reclining at table, and he rebuked them for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they had not believed those who saw him after he had risen. 15 And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

19 So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God. 20 And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by accompanying signs.

For more info, see: Wikipedia: Ascension BBC: Ascension Day Catholic Encyclopedia: Ascension Religious Tolerance: Ascension day Presbyterians Today: The Ascension

Last year at church we had quite a focus on the period between Resurrection and Ascension, as we worked through the series 40 days with the risen Lord. This year we’ve not really paid much attention to such things, but it would a shame to let Ascension and, in a few days, Pentecost pass without recognition of these momentous events in the history of the world and the church.