This week-end we celebrated the feast of Pentecost, which takes place 50 days after Easter Sunday, it’s a very special Feast in the life of the Church and the Christian Community, and it represent the official birthday of the Church. The Advocate promised by Jesus enters the believing community to guide, support and direct them in their daily life.
We recall the frightened group of Apostles feeling very much alone and fearful when Jesus went home to his Father in Heaven. He had promised them many times before leaving that he would not leave them on their own. “Do not be afraid, peace be with you when I go to my Father we will send the Holy Spirit who will be with you always’. But despite that, they were afraid of what lay ahead of them, they feared the unknown. They disappeared into an upper room and gathered together in prayer around Mary the mother of Jesus. And it was then the Breath of the Spirit filled the whole room and rested on each of them in the form of tongues of fire. They were immediately empowered, their despair turned into hope, their fear into courage and their anxiety into peace and their sorrow into Joy. They were no longer afraid, they were transformed by the power of the spirit and they went out sharing their experience and the gifts of the Spirit with the entire community of people.
Now the Pentecost experience is not a once off event. We are all missionary disciples and we too are called and sent out to bring and to share the gospel message wherever we go… into our local communities, our homes, families and places of work. And we too need to gather together in prayer with Mary the mother of Jesus if our work and presence is to bear fruit, fruit that will last…. we know the fruits of the Spirit, – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. Let us continue to live them and share them with those with whom we live and work. And I will end with Saint John Henry Newman’s favorite prayer.
“Come Holy Spirit,
Make our ears to hear, make our eyes to see, make our mouths to speak, make our hearts to seek, make our hands to reach out and touch the world with your love. Amen.”