In the final movement of his 9th and final symphony, the great musical maestro Beethoven gives an arresting musical expression to the glorious and eternal vision of God's Kingdom that is the goal of our Christian faith.
Today, Ascension Day highlights the pull of that vision on our everyday life as the Church - the body that Christ left here on earth.
On this day, after the tradition of Acts 1.11, Christians begin a period of global prayers (Novena - the nine days from Ascension Day to Pentecost) for the realisation of that vision: a world kissed by heaven's joy, peace and universal contentment.
So on this Ascension Day, let us join with others to pray as our Saviour taught us: Thy Kingdom Come.
Let us pray for increased grace to live in harmony with all God's creation. Let us take on the challenge to open our hearts and affairs to God's love so that we may love our neighbours (seen and unseen) as ourselves.
In other words, we pray not only to deepen ourselves in God's love but also to invite others into it.
The movement, helpfully, offers resources (including an App) to help us prayerfully anticipate the promised gift of the Holy Spirit. The resources not only prepare our hearts to follow Jesus Christ but also to make room for others in God's big tent of Love and so hasten: 'Thy Kingdom Come.'