The Examen with James Martin, S.J.: The Seventh Week of Easter




Subscribe to “The Examen” for free on Apple Podcasts
Subscribe to “The Examen” for free on Google Play

A few weeks ago, I was in the Holy Land with a group of pilgrims, and together we visited the Chapel of the Ascension, in Jerusalem. The little stone chapel is right where the Gospels describe the event occurring, that is, somewhere near the town of Bethany. The building passed through many different religious hands over the centuries, thanks to the constant political changes in the Holy Land, and eventually it ended up as a mosque. But it’s open for all to see, and I’m always glad to pray there.

This week we celebrate the Ascension of Jesus Christ, which the Gospels describe as Jesus being as taking up, bodily, into heaven. For me, that mysterious event has two important meanings. First, our bodies are important. Remember: after his Passion and Death, Jesus returns to the disciples with his body, still showing his wounds. And at the Ascension he wasn’t just taken up “in spirit.” It’s a reminder to all those who try to remove the body from the spiritual life. That leads to a second insight: Jesus is with the Father. At the end of his public ministry Jesus is brought into complete union with the Father. So one question to ask ourselves this week: What place does your body have in your spiritual life?

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.


The latest from america

Protestors march to support a U.N. anti-corruption commission in Guatemala City on Jan. 6. Photo by Jackie McVicar.
“What they are doing not only puts Guatemala at risk but the entire region. Bit by bit, for more than a year, they have been trying to divide us. The elections are at risk. We are six months away.”
Jackie McVicarJanuary 18, 2019
“We will just do what we need to do to help people in need,” said Antonio Fernandez, C.E.O. of Catholic Charities for the Archdiocese of San Antonio.
Emma Winters January 18, 2019
The study found Latina immigrant women in Arizona who were pregnant during the contentious S.B. 1070 passage had babies with lower birthweight compared with those in prior years. Average birth weights did not decrease among U.S.-born white, black or Latina women during the same time.
J.D. Long-GarcíaJanuary 18, 2019
This week's guest is Destiny Herndon-De La Rosa, founder of New Wave Feminists, a pro-life feminist organization dedicated to changing the divisive language surrounding the abortion debate.
Olga SeguraJanuary 18, 2019