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Ascension Resource Guide

This list of Ascension Day resources, including songs, reflections, visual arts, and readings, will help you plan worship for Ascension Day, traditionally celebrated 40 days after Easter. Ascension Day worship services celebrate Jesus Christ ascending into heaven after giving his disciples the Great Commission.

Ascension II © Jan Richardson.

Ascension Day Worship

Ascension Day is the crowning event of the ministry of our Lord. On the fortieth day after Easter, Jesus went to the Mount of Olives with his disciples and ascended to heaven before their eyes (Acts 1:1-12).

The ascension of Christ is filled with theological significance. Christ’s ascension means that in heaven there is one who, knowing firsthand the experience of suffering and temptation, prays for us and perfects our prayers. His ascension is a witness and guarantee of our own bodily resurrection, as well as an invitation for us to set our hearts and minds “on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God” (Col. 3:1-2) to rule over all things in heaven and throughout the universe (Eph. 1:10, 20-23). Finally, the ascension of Jesus serves as the prelude to Pentecost, when the power of the risen Christ came upon all believers through the Holy Spirit.

Some churches observe Ascension Day with a service on that Thursday. Others observe Jesus’ ascension on the preceding or following Sunday. As during the celebration of Easter, the liturgical colors are white and gold.

(adapted from The Worship Sourcebook)

Story about Reclaiming the Promise of Ascension

Meditations and Devotions

Featured Resources

The Worship Sourcebook

  • Part O of The Worship Sourcebook Second Edition, pp. 661-678, offers sample prayers and other worship resources for each act of worship celebrating Christ’s Ascension; Part P of The Worship Sourcebook Second Edition, pp. 679-691, focuses on Christ the King. These resources include suggestions for the Call to Worship, Opening Responses, Confession and Assurance, Prayers for Illumination, the Lord's Supper, and Blessing/Benediction.

Reformed Worship magazine

Center for Excellence in Preaching