Ascension 2016 - Liturgy

Greetings
The Risen Lord Jesus now lives
in the glory of the Father.
Through the Spirit of courage and love
may he always be with you.
R/ And also with you.
Introduction by the Celebrant
A. Glorious, Yet Still with Us

When someone good and close to us has died, we feel that this person is still with us and keeps inspiring and guiding us. When at his Ascension Jesus left his disciples and passed to the glory of heaven, he became to his disciples more than a memory of a great person who had died. First, he is still alive as the risen Lord; second, he is gone but he stays with us by his Spirit of strength and wisdom and love and in this way he is our companion in life. He still speaks his word to us, he still gives himself to us as our food and drink, and he is alive in our communities. Listen to him present among us here and let him nourish us with his word and his body.
 

B. An End and a New Beginning

Jesus had gone ahead of us and shown us the way in his preaching and the way he lived: this is what should inspire us, this is how we should live, like Jesus. In his death he showed us the way of faithful love. He was the first to rise from the dead and our assurance that we too will rise. In his ascension he went ahead of us to live in the joy of the Father. In all these steps he is a living invitation: Come, follow me where I go. I am waiting for you after you have continued my work. In this eucharist we say in the Creed: "I believe in the resurrection of the dead and the life everlasting."
Penitential Act
Too often the Lord has not been present
in our words and actions.
Let us ask him to forgive us.
(PAUSE)
Lord Jesus, you live in the Father's glory,
a glory that is rightfully yours:
All praise to you, Lord!
Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy.

Jesus Christ, our life and our glory,
you will send us your Holy Spirit:
All praise to you, Lord!
Christ, have mercy. R/ Christ, have mercy.

Lord Jesus, you will return
to fulfill all our hopes:
All praise to you, Lord!
Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy.

Lord, be patient with us
and grant us your forgiveness.
Let your Spirit guide us to everlasting life. R/ Amen.
Opening Prayer
Let us pray that the risen, glorious Lord
may be always with us through his Spirit
(PAUSE)
Lord our God,
your Son Jesus Christ lives in your glory
to be nearer to us through his Holy Spirit
and to be near to all people through us.
Give us the Holy Spirit,
that we may have the courage
to help you save the world by serving it
and by building up your kingdom
of justice, truth and love,
in the name of him whom we await,
Jesus Christ, our risen Lord
and our Savior for ever. R/ Amen.
Liturgy of the Word
First Reading Introduction: Why Are You Looking Into The Sky?      At his ascension, Jesus entrusts his work to the apostles. The Holy Spirit will give them the strength to bear witness to Christ the Lord to the whole world.
Second Reading Introduction: Christ Went Ahead Of Us To Heaven
      Christ saved us once and for all and he leads us into the sanctuary of heaven. This is our firm hope.
Gospel Introduction: Go And Teach All Nations My Gospel
       The apostles, and the whole Church with them, are sent to bring to the whole world the Good News of Christ, who died for us and rose from the dead.
General Intercessions
Our Lord Jesus Christ lives now in the glory of the Father, but we know that he is aware of our needs and can sympathize with us, having shared our human condition. And so we pray to him: R/ Lord, send us your Spirit.
- Lord, through your Spirit of courage inspire the pope and our bishops and the whole People of God to go the way of renewal without fear and to have confidence in the future. And so we pray: R/ Lord, send us your Spirit.
- Lord, accompany and move us through your Holy Spirit to live your gospel as joyful news of love, justice and peace. And so we pray:R/ Lord, send us your Spirit.
- Lord, open us to your Spirit, make us one of heart and soul, that we may build community together and do for one another what you have done for us. And so we pray: R/ Lord, send us your Spirit.
- Lord, pour out your Spirit over the leaders of nations; make them people of vision, that their foremost concern may be people and that they may create an atmosphere of human dignity and freedom in which all can develop their potential. And so we pray: R/ Lord, send us your Spirit.
- Lord, give us your Spirit of compassion, that we may respect all life and lift up our brothers and sisters in need; be with us, Lord, that we may be with them and that their hope in life may be restored. And so we pray: R/ Lord, send us your Spirit.
Lord Jesus Christ, all power has been given to you in heaven and on earth. Live in us through your Spirit, that we may be your word and your presence to the world today, for you are our living Lord, now and for ever. R/ Amen.
Prayer over the Gifts
Lord our God,
in the signs of this bread and this wine
your Son Jesus will be with us soon.
May he give us his Spirit of strength,
that we may not keep staring at heaven
except to ask for your help to do your work.
May we rather face the world
and commit ourselves to the task
of making it your world,
by the power of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,
your Son and our Lord for ever. R/ Amen.
Introduction to the Eucharistic Prayer
Let us with joy give thanks to the Father that Jesus, though raised up to heaven, is still with is through his Holy Spirit here in this eucharist, in the Church, and in the people around us.
Invitation to the Lord's Prayer
The Lord Jesus is now living
in the glory of the Father in heaven;
there he pleads for us.
Through him, and in his words,
we pray to God, our Father: R/ Our Father...
Deliver Us
Deliver us, Lord, from our factions and division
and bring us together under the leadership
of Jesus, our Good Shepherd.
Let us share in the peace
of his caring and forgiving love
and save us from all anxiety,
for we are sure that he will bring us
to the source of living water,
for he is our Shepherd and Savior Jesus Christ:

R/ For the kingdom...
Invitation to Communion
This is the Lord who said:
Know that I am with you always
until the end of time.
This is his risen and glorious body.
Happy are we that he is our bread
on our journey to the Father.
R/ Lord, I am not worthy...
Prayer after Communion
Lord our God,
we thank you for trusting us so much
that you have entrusted to us
the very mission of your Son:
to be his presence to the world.
May we reign with him
by learning from him to serve,
that people may see that Christ is alive
because we are his body to the world.
We ask you this through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
Blessing
The Lord Jesus tells us,
as he told the apostles:
"Be my witnesses to the whole world."
Let us not stare at heaven
but be his message of hope to people on earth
by the way we live his gospel.
And let us ask for God's blessing.
May we bring the Lord's message
to our time and to our people. R/ Amen.
May he go about doing good through us
and may we make him visible today. R/ Amen.
May he stay with us through his Spirit
now and till the end of time. R/ Amen.
And may almighty God bless you all,
the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. R/ Amen.

Go in peace
to love and serve the Lord
in the people around us. R/ Thanks be to God.