Jean Restout's: Pentecost
I wrote the following reflection Pentecost Sunday two years ago. It has remained at the top of my "Most Visited" posts for some time now. I thought in celebration of Pentecost this year, I would share it here.
A very Happy and Blessed Birthday to our Catholic Church!
The Holy Spirit's Arrival in Wind and FireWhat must it have been like to be in that room among the 120 or so disciples of Christ along with His Blessed Mother? Jesus' Apostles were there, but also many who witnessed Him after His resurrection. They all believed, but their faith was at various stages and degrees. Despite that, there they all gathered waiting for the arrival of the Holy Spirit; Jesus' last promise before He ascended to His Father.
The atmosphere of that room must have been one of excitement, anticipation. and maybe even a little fear. After all, once the promised Spirit arrives, what next? And arrive the Spirit did in a driving wind and in tongues of fire descending upon all those gathered.
Pentecost is an ancient Jewish feast, so there were many Jews from various places all gathered in Jerusalem for the feast; not everyone spoke the same language. When the disciples emerged from the room and began preaching, everyone understood in their native tongue. The division that God had inflicted at Babel was now being transformed into unity in the coming of the Holy Spirit~ even if would just last for that day. In that moment, the prayer of Jesus seemed to be answered~ they were all one.
Our Church today is the "one holy, Catholic and apostolic Church", yet there still remain divisions. This Pentecost let us take up the prayer of Jesus and pray that the Church and all Christians will be one. Let us ask the Holy Spirit, the Lord and giver of Life, to continue to breathe life into the Church.
St Augustine's Prayer To The Holy Spirit
Breathe in me, O Holy Spirit, that my thoughts may all be holy. Act in me, O Holy Spirit, that my work, too, may be holy. Draw my heart, O Holy Spirit, that I love but what is holy. Strengthen me, O Holy Spirit, to defend all that is holy. Guard me, then, O Holy Spirit, that I always may be holy.