His soul descends into the realm of the dead to announce to the Just the tidings of their redemption.
Fearing the body of Jesus will be taken, the chief priests place guards at the tomb.
On the third day Jesus rises from the dead, glorious and immortal.
The earth quakes as the angel rolls back the stone, the guards flee in terror.
The holy women coming to anoint the body of Jesus are amazed and frightened to find the tomb open.
An angel calms their fears: “He is not here. He has risen as He said.”
Jesus appears to Mary Magdalen and Peter and two disciples on the way to Emmaus.
That evening He appears to the apostles behind locked doors: “Peace be unto you… do not be afraid.”
Jesus breathes on them and gives them the power to forgive sin.
* Spiritual Fruit: Faith
2. THE ASCENSION
Jesus remains on earth forty days after His Resurrection to prove He has truly risen from the dead.
He commissions the apostles to preach the gospel to every creature, and promises to be with them forever.
He will not leave them orphans, but will send the Holy Spirit to enlighten and strengthen them.
Jesus proceeds to Mt. Olivet accompanied by His Mother and the apostles and disciples.
Extending His pierced hands over all in a last blessing, He ascends into heaven.
As He ascends a cloud takes Him from their sight.
Jesus ascends to take His place at the right hand of the Father.
What jubilation there must be amid the angels of heaven at the triumphant entry of Jesus.
The wounds in His glorified body are an endless plea before the Father on our behalf.
The disciples leave Mt. Olivet and “return to Jerusalem with great joy.”
* Spiritual Fruit: Christian Hope
3. THE DESCENT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
The apostles are gathered in the upper room where Jesus had held the Last Supper.
They are persevering in prayer with Mary the Mother of Jesus.
A sound comes from heaven like the rush of a mighty wind, and it fills the whole house.
The Holy Spirit descends on each of them in the form of tongues of fire.
Filled with the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, they are enlightened and strengthened to spread the Gospel.
Having lost all fear of the Jewish leaders, the apostles boldly preach Christ crucified.
The multitudes are confounded because every man hears them speak in his own tongue.
The Holy Spirit comes upon the Infant Church never to leave it.
That first day Peter goes forth to preach and baptizes three thousand.
The feast of Pentecost is the birthday of the Church, for on that day it begins to grow.
* Spiritual Fruit: Gifts of the Holy Spirit
4. THE ASSUMPTION
After the apostles have dispersed, the Blessed Mother goes to live with John, the beloved disciple.
Mary lives many years on earth after the death of Christ.
She is a source of comfort, consolation and strength to the apostles.
As she had nourished the infant Jesus, so she nourishes spiritually the infant Church.
Mary dies, not of bodily infirmity, but is wholly overcome in a rapture of divine love.
Her body as well as her soul is taken up into heaven.
After her burial the apostles go to the tomb and find only fragrant lilies.
Jesus does not permit the sinless body of His Mother to decay in the grave.
Corruption of the body is an effect of original sin from which Mary is totally exempted.
The bodies of all mankind, at the last judgment, will be brought back and united again to the soul.
* Spiritual Fruit: To Jesus through Mary
5. THE CORONATION
As Mary enters heaven, the entire court of heaven greets with joy this masterpiece of God’s creation.
Mary is crowned by her divine Son as Queen of heaven and earth.
More than we can ever know the Hearts of Jesus and Mary overflow with joy at this reunion.
Only in heaven will we know the great majesty of that coronation, and the joy it gave to the angels and saints.
Even the angels, who by nature are greater than humans, hail Mary as their Queen.
Mary shares so fully in the glory of Christ because she shared so fully in His suffering.
Only in heaven will we see how central is the role of Mary in the divine plan of redemption.
The angels and saints longed for the coming of her whose heel crushes the head of the serpent.
Mary pleads our cause as a most powerful Queen and a most merciful and loving Mother.
A great sign appeared in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.
* Spiritual Fruit: Grace of Final Perseverance