Ascension, Year C

Musical Reflection
Where is my Mind by The Pixies



God unheld
by word or wall;
power of love
beyond all rulers of war:
lift us from dullness
and cynical contempt;
make us ready for your Spirit
of transforming fire
and turn our hearts
to the mending of the world;
through Jesus Christ, the name above all names.

First Reading
Spider Crystal Ascension

by Charles Wright

The spider, juiced crystal and Milky Way, drifts on his web through the night sky

And looks down, waiting for us to ascend …

At dawn he is still there, invisible, short of breath, mending his net.

All morning we look for the white face to rise from the lake like a tiny star.
And when it does, we lie back in our watery hair and rock.


Second Reading
by Kathleen Norris

Why do you stand looking up at the skies?
          – Acts 1:11

It wasn’t just wind, chasing
the gunmetal clouds
across the loud sky;
it wasn’t the feeling that one might ascend
on that excited air,
rising like a trumpet note.

And it wasn’t just my sister’s water breaking,
her crying out,
the downward draw of blood and bone . . .

It was all of that,
the mud and new grass
pushing up through melting snow,
the lilac in bud
by my front door, bent low
by last week’s ice storm.

Now the new mother, that leaky vessel,
begins to nurse her child,
beginning the long good-bye.


Gospel Reading
Luke 24:44-53

Jesus said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about me in the Law from Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures. He said to them, “This is what is written: the Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and a change of heart and life for the forgiveness of sins must be preached in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.You are witnesses of these things. Look, I’m sending to you what Abba God promised, but you are to stay in the city until you have been furnished with heavenly power.”

He led them out as far as Bethany, where he lifted his hands and blessed them. As he blessed them, he left them and was taken up to heaven. They worshipped him and returned to Jerusalem overwhelmed with joy. And they were continuously in the temple praising God.


Musical Reflection
Open by Regina Spektor

Ascension Day Prayer
from the South African Book of Common Prayer, adapted


O Almighty God, who by thy holy apostle
hast taught us to set our affection on things above:
grant us so to labour in this life
as ever to be mindful
of our citizenship in heavenly places
where our Saviour Christ is gone before;
to whom with thee O Abba, and thee O Holy Ghost,
be all honour and glory, world without end. Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father/Mother/Parent who art in heaven,
Our Creator, you are all around us and within us.
hallowed be thy name.
We praise you with many different names.
Thy kindom come, thy will be done
Help us live as we understand we should from knowing you
in harmony and connectedness with each other,
on earth as it is in heaven.
With all creatures of the earth,
and with the earth and the universe itself.
Give us this day our daily bread,
Help us to use your resources wisely
So that we might be sustained.
and forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.
Help us take responsibility when we fail to live harmoniously,
And help us understand and forgive when others let us down.
And lead us not into temptation,
Let us know you well enough that we are not tempted
to live outside of your love.
but deliver us from evil,
and empower us to work together to overcome evil.
for thine is the kindom, and the power, and the glory forever.
We believe that you created the world
and that you will be all around us and within us forever.
We are open to you.

Musical Reflection
He Prayed by Sinead O’Connor


The love of the faithful Creator,
The peace of the wounded Healer,
The joy of the challenging Spirit,
The hope of the Three-in-One
surround and encourage us
today, tonight, and forever.

May the blessing of God – the Creator, the Healer,
and the Spirit
be with us and remain with us always. Amen.



Artwork by Winslow Homer

Invocation from Prayers for an Inclusive Church by Steven Shakespeare

Musical Reflection Where is my Mind by The Pixies

Poem Spider Crystal Ascension by Charles Wright

Poem Ascension by Kathleen Norris

Musical Reflection Open by Regina Spektor

Prayer from the South African BCP

Lord’s Prayer by Lyn Seils Robertson

Musical Reflection He Prayed by Sinead O’Connor

Blessing from The Pattern of our Days

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