Ascension Sunday - Liturgical Prayers

Greeting
"Do all you can to preserve the unity of the Spirit
by the peace that binds you together as one body.
May the Lord send you his Spirit of unity
and be always with you. R/ And also with you.
Introduction by the Celebrant
A. The Lord of All (Option 1)
We celebrate the Ascension today. Does that mean that Jesus has left us, is gone? It is true we can no longer touch and see him as could the apostles and disciples. He no longer belongs to a small group but to everyone on earth who wants to accept him. He is now the Lord of all, the Lord of glory, and yet still one of us and very near, more intimate to ourselves than we are, the heart of our own heart, through his Spirit alive in us. We, the Church, have to continue the work he began and to bear witness that he is our living Lord. Let us listen to him speaking in this eucharist and give glory to him and to the Father.
B. Witnesses Needed (Option 2)Ascension Day. A Feast of joy. For a part of us is now very close to God: our brother Jesus, who is one of us, is the first to rise from the dead and the first to live fully in God's glory and joy. He leads us, he shows us the way. But in the meantime we have to bring him to our world and to the people of our day. Proclaim with your lives that he is alive. Make the Good News known. Jesus will work with you through the Spirit he gives you and he will confirm what you say and do.
Penitential Act
Our witnessing to the living Lord is poor.
Our living rarely shows that we believe
that his Spirit guides us.
We ask the Lord to forgive us.
           (PAUSE)
Lord Jesus, you are raised to the Father's glory,
and yet you remain present
where two or three meet in your name:
Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy.

Jesus Christ, in heaven you prepare a place
for those who believe in you
and live in your love:
Christ, have mercy. R/ Christ, have mercy.

Lord Jesus, you send us out
all over the world to be your witnesses
and to share the Good News of your love:
Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy.

Have mercy on us, Lord,
do not abandon us to our sins
but forgive us and let us live in your presence.
Lead us to everlasting life. R/ Amen.
Opening Prayer
Let us pray and praise the Father
through Christ, who went ahead of us
       (PAUSE)
God our Father,
we have never seen you
but your Son Jesus has made you known to us.
He lives now in your glory.
May we not feel abandoned
but strengthen us in the conviction
that he stays with us until the end of time
in our brothers and sisters.
Let his Spirit guide and strengthen us
to bear witness that he is alive
in our communities of faith and love
and to proclaim his Good News to all the world.
Grant us this through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
General Intercessions
The Lord Jesus has entrusted his work to us. He is with us and acts in us through his Spirit, so that we can do everything in his name. So we pray: R/ Be with us, Lord.
- Be with your Church, Lord, that it may spread the Good News of your love and kingdom to all peoples and languages and cultures, we pray: R/ Be with us, Lord.
- Be with all your prophets and missionaries, that they may voice without fear your message of justice, truth and mercy even to those not eager to listen, we pray: R/ Be with us, Lord.
- Be with the leaders of nations, Lord, when they try to bring an almost impossible peace to a world torn by violence and war. Let their efforts not be made in vain, we pray: R/ Be with us, Lord.
- Be with the downtrodden and those in pain, Lord, revive their trust in you and in people; open the eyes and hands of those who follow you to bring them your tender love and care, we pray: R/ Be with us, Lord.
- Be with us and all Christian communities, Lord; make them signs of your presence by their spirit of prayer, their unity, their gentleness and patience with one another, we pray: R/ Be with us, Lord.
Jesus our Lord, by the strength of your Spirit guide us on our pilgrim way to the home where you live in glory with the Father and the Spirit, 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 us through his Holy Spirit here in this eucharist, in the Church, and in the people around us.
Introduction 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...
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 handed over 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.