When he had said this, that he would be leaving them and sending His Holy Spirit, He withdrew from them and was carried up to heaven.” After having been with His disciple-friends, he left them. Artists have tried to depict this scene, and some are quite humorous. I’ve seen paintings that have the disciples staring up to the sky and all you see are the feet of the ascending Jesus disappearing into the clouds. Jesuit historian, Michel de Certeau, writes that “Christianity was founded on the ‘loss of a body’ . The first time was when Jesus’ dead body was missing from the tomb, and now when he bodily ascends to heaven. Our Mass reminds us that, “we proclaim His death until He comes again”. His Ascension helps us to remember that He was human like us and that we eventually hope to go where He has gone.
Fr. David McLean, a Dominican priest, says that the Ascension of Jesus is the beginning of our salvation. All that we need do is to follow the feet. The Ascension marks the last appearance of Christ among us. Perhaps those feet are supposed to remind us that he was really with us. This feast provides assurances on two fronts. Yes, human beings can be with the Father in heaven. Yes, God really was here for us. His physical body may be in heaven, but his body the church is still alive and well, here on earth. If the image of the feet helps us to appreciate the Ascension, then they serve their purpose.
Walking in His footsteps with my eyes on those feet,