Don’t Forfeit Your Banquet Invitation What if you held a feast and no one came? Jesus dealt with this in the Parable of the Great Banquet (Luke 14:15-24). He told of a rich man who “invited many” but kept hearing excuses. Dismayed with the responses of his friends and acquaintances, the man had his servants invite “the poor and crippled and blind and lame” but there was “still room.” So he sent them out again to compel strangers to join the party and declared that no one who’d first declined would be able to attend. In the Christian calendar, Ascension Day reminds me of the Great Banquet. Traditionally one of the major feast days, it celebrates our Lord returning to His Father on the fortieth day of Easter. This year, it falls on 17 May. Jesus ascended to His heavenly home because His earthly work was complete. He lived a perfect life and died an innocent victim in order to pay for mankind’s sins. He left that He might gift His disciples and the Church with the Holy Spirit. He also ascended so that He might “go to prepare a place for” believers (John 14:2). After telling the Twelve why He would soon depart, He then said, “If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. (v.