One Minute Reflection – 23 May – Within the Octave of Ascension – The Memorial of St John Baptiste de Rossi (1698-1764) Priest, Confessor – Acts 1:1-11, Mark 16:14-20 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/
“Go ye into the whole world and preach the Gospel to every creature.” – Mark 16:15
REFLECTION – “You have heard what the Lord said to His disciples after the Resurrection. He sent them out to preach the Gospel and they did so. Listen: “Through all the earth their voice resounds and to the ends of the world, their message” (Ps 18,5). Step by step, the Gospel has reached even to us and the ends of the earth. In a few words, the Lord addressing Himself to His disciples, set out what we are to do and what we have to hope for. Just as you have heard, He said: “Whoever believes and is Baptised will be saved.” He asks for our faith and offers us salvation. What He offers us is so precious, that what He asks of us is as nothing.
“The children of men take refuge in the shadow of Thy wings, O my God… from Thy delightful stream, Thou give them to drink, for with Thee is the fountain of life” (Ps 35,8f.). Jesus Christ is the Fountain of Life. Before the Fountain of Life came to us, we had only a human salvation like that of the beasts, of which the psalm speaks: “Man and beast you save, O Lord” (Ps 35,7). But now the Fountain of Life has come even to us, the Fountain of Life died for our sakes. Will He refuse us, His Life, Who, for our sakes, gave His Death? He is Salvation and this Salvation is not worthless, like the other one. Why? Because it does not pass away. The Lord has come. He died but he killed death. In Himself, He brought an end to death. He assumed it and He killed it. Where is death now, then? Look for it in Christ and it is no longer there. It used to be there but there it died. O life, Death of death! Take heart – it will also die in us! What was fulfilled in the Head will also be fulfilled in the members and death will die in us, too.” – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo and Father and Doctor of the Church (Excerpt from Sermon 233 ).
PRAYER – Grant, we beseech Thee, Almighty God, that as we do believe Thine Only-Begotten Son our Saviour to have this day Ascended into the Heavens, so we may also, in heart and mind thither ascend and with Him, continually dwell. And may the merits and intercession of Thy Confessor, John Baptiste de Rossi, be an aid on our journey. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).