A tradition, handed down from the early ages, and confirmed by the revelations of the saints, tells us that the Ascension of Our Lord took place at the hour of noon. the Carmelites of St. Teresa's reform honor this pious tradition by assembling in the choir, at the hour of midday on the Ascension, and spending it in the contemplation of this last of Jesus' mysteries, following Him, in thought and desire, to the throne of His glory.
Let us also follow Him; but before looking on the bright noon which smiles on His triumph, let us go back in thought to His first coming among us. It was at midnight, in the stable of Bethlehem. That dark and silent hour was an appropriate commencement to the three and thirty years of His life on earth. He had to come to accomplish a great mission: year by year and day by day, He laboured in its fulfilment. It was nigh to its fulfilment, when men laid their sacrilegious hands upon Him, and nailed Him to a cross. It was midday, when He was thus raised up in the air; but the eternal Father would not permit the sun to shine on Jesus' humiliation. Darkness covered the face of the earth; and that day had no noon. Three hours after, the sun reappeared. Three days after, the Crucified rose again from the tomb, and it was at the early dawn of light.
On this day, yea at this very hour, His work is completed. He redeemed us, by His Blood, from our sins; He has conquered death by His Resurrection to life: had He not a right to choose, for His Ascension, the hour when the sun is pouring forth his warmest and brightest beams? Hail, holy hour of noon, sacred with thy double consecration, which reminds us daily of the mercy and of the triumph of our Emmanuel, of salvation by His cross, and of heaven by His Ascension!
Prayer on the Ascension
Only-begotten Son of God! Who, having conquered death, didst pass from earth to heaven: Who, as Son of Man, art seated in great glory on Thy throne, receiving praise from the whole angelic host! Grant that we, who in the jubilant devotion of our faith, celebrate thine Ascension to the Father, may not be fettered by the chains of sin to the love of this world; and that the aim of our hearts may unceasingly be directd to the heavens, whither Thou didst ascend in glory after Thy Passion. Amen.
** Taken from The Liturgical Year, by Abbot Gueranger, OSB (Pascal Time-Book III)