'And now I will no longer be in the world, but they are in the world, while I am coming to you.” (John 17:11).
German poet Rainer Maria Rilke uses the metaphor of the "dark interval" to describe the silence between notes that makes music possible.
The Feast of the Ascension begins the dark interval between Jesus' departure and Pentecost, the coming of the Spirit and the birth of the church. It is a crucial interval in which the followers of Jesus wait and pray. Mary is with them, a keynote to the miracle of the church, which repeats the moment of conception Mary welcomed that made possible the Incarnation, "Word made flesh." Now the same Spirit will hover over the followers of Jesus and, with their consent, will make them the body of Christ in the world.
We celebrate Ascension by placing ourselves in the same waiting stance of prayer, opening our minds and hearts to the mystery of Jesus. In our generation, we are the body of Christ in the world. The Word becomes flesh in us. Our hands and feet, voices and actions are the means by which God is active in the world.
So we are faithful to the mystery when, together with Mary, the model disciple, we say, "Yes, be it done unto us according to your word." We are now in the dark interval. The music of redemption, love and reconciliation continues in us.