Sermon: Ascension Day 2006
In the name of the +Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
• According to Welsh superstition, it is unlucky to do any work on Ascension Day.
• In Devon, it was an ancient belief that the clouds always formed into the familiar Christian image of a lamb.
• If the weather is sunny, the summer will be long and hot; but if it rains, crops will do badly and livestock, especially cattle, will suffer from disease.
• Eggs laid on this day will never go bad and will guarantee good luck for a household if placed in the roof.
• Rain collected on Ascension Day is said to be good for inflamed or diseased eyes.
• Those suffering from goitre should bite into the bark of a peach tree at midnight on Ascension Day, so that the disease passes to the tree and the sufferer is cured.
• Gifts to the blind or lame made on this day are sure to be rewarded with great wealth within the following twelve months.
The last thing Jesus did before ascending to heaven was bless the disciples. Hence why there are so many superstitious ‘blessings’ like the ones above, I suppose. Although just why the Welsh should think it unlucky to work today is anyone’s guess!
However, the blessing is really connected with the mission of Christians. Nowhere is Scripture is there the notion that ‘my faith is a private and personal thing’. There is time for worship, but not for a holy huddle. We are to get on with letting the world know who Jesus is, what God has done in Him, in the amazing power of the Holy Spirit. God will use this, infusing our efforts with His blessing. Amen