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Rev. Mr. John A Sistare
Ascension Thursday
North American College- House Mass

It’s that time of year again! Every hallway, gateway and alley here at the North American College is filled with it!

Regali! (gifts) : those precious gifts / belongings that departing men (4th & 5th yr.) freely give (or have taken) to those who remain behind for the build up of their rooms.

Today we celebrate the Ascension of our Lord and his departure from this world to the Father. Certainly this departure must have filled the apostles with sorrow, but it was only temporary as they were soon filled with joy. They are filled with joy, because like our departing men here at the college, Jesus left them regali! He didn’t leave them alone or empty handed but sent them regali / gifts.

Jesus leaves them many gifts: His spouse - the Church, His Mother – Mary, and His very life, his body and blood – the Eucharist. However, 1st and foremost he gives us the gift of all gifts. The gift that would come just 10 days later on Pentecost. The gift that made Mary who she is! The gift that guides the Church! The gift that by it’s very power changes bread and wine into the body & blood of Christ (as we will hear in the epiclesis today in just a few minutes.)

I’m talking about the Holy Spirit!!!!

Today, there is a real need of the Holy Spirit. Here at the college, in our daily lives we need the gift of the Spirit. Now with exams beginning we need understanding, wisdom & knowledge. We need the Spirit as tension goes up and our patience goes down, to live in charity with our brothers. We need the Spirit in our vocational discernment, always remaining docile and open to the Spirit and will of God.

In the future as priests, we need the Holy Spirit in a special way. For some of us, the priesthood is right around the corner and personally with less than a month to go, I have concerns and questions on my mind. For example, with regards to preaching: HOW will I, day in and day out, preach effectively? HOW will I preach in and out of season, speaking on the tough issues of our day? In confession, HOW will I as a sinner myself, forgive the sins of those who bare their souls? Finally, HOW will I be a Father to the people entrusted to my care, when I am young enough to be their son or grandson?

The answer is quite simple…

By the power of Holy Spirit!!!! The very love of the Father & Son dwelling within each of us!!!!

Jesus has ascended but hasn’t left us alone. He has sent The gift of all gifts!!!


il regalo (gift) / The Holy Spirit:

the precious gift, very love of the Father & Son, freely sent to those who remain behind for the build up of the kingdom , dwelling within each of us as we journey towards our final end, eternal life.


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