2019 05 02: The Curious Case of the Feast of the Ascension

Why do we celebrate Ascension Day?  The story almost seems a little cruel.  Jesus had come back to his disciples from the grave, and the forty days he spent with them after his resurrection were a time of healing and joy and being filled up for the new mission Christ gave to his disciples to go into all the world and make disciples.  But then, after just forty short days, he left.  If Jesus is risen and alive, why doesn’t he stay down here with us?  Given my experience of the church and probably yours too, I have no doubt that the church could use better management.  Even if we believe that the pope is the Vicar of Christ, why not just give us Christ?  Why can’t Christ stay around to overturn the moneychangers’ tables in the temple and tell off the Pharisees and the false prophets, tell us who’s right and who’s wrong in our endless disputes, and run off all of the scoundrels who dare to abuse and deceive God’s children in Christ’s name?