A Celtic Ascension?

Pilgrims to Holy Island have had a feast of Ascension prayers and praises in church and chapel. Is there such a thing as a Celtic Ascension? Of course not, since Ascension belongs to the whole church and the whole world!  However, those steeped in the Celtic awareness of the five senses might more readily see that the effects of the glory of the Ascended God-Human  can be seen in human beings coming fully alive.


I have written this Celtic Ascension Blessing:

The glory of the God of life glow within you

even  when clouds hide God from your sight.

In valleys of discontent

in birth pangs and death pains

the glory of the God of life  glow always within you.



The monk historan Bede, who, although not Celtic, wrote with admiration about saints from the Irish mission to his people, wrote an ascension hymn which I have slightly adapted:

A hymn of glory let us sing

New songs throughout the world shall ring.

Christ, by a road before untrod

Ascends now to the throne of God.


The holy apostolic band

Upon the Mount of Olives stand

And with his followers they see

Jesus' resplendent majesty.


To whom the angels drawing nigh

Ask why they gaze upon the sky.

'This is the Saviour!' thus they say,

'This is his noble triumph day'.


'Once more shall you behold him so

As you today have seen him go

In glorious love ascending high

Up to the heaven beyond the sky'.


Come, be our Joy and strong Defence

Who are our future Recompense

So shall the light that we shall see

Be ours through all eternity.


O risen Christ, ascended Lord,

All praise to you let earth accord.

Who are, while endless ages run

With Father and with Spirit One.

Posted at 23:10pm on 9th May 2013
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