THE FIRST Pentecost the y Spirit brought strength, 'er and conviction. The sties, terrified during ist's Passion, went forth n that upper room fearless unafraid, bringing the sage of Christ to the world. was an astonishing :hological change.
he Holy Spirit had burned y their fears and timidities. the same today. "Pentecost to bright feast, the feast of 'Bring flames and darting ;ues of fire." The Spirit ks in totally new and Kpected ways bringing fresh
e and vision to us all as we dily move towards our naf home.
hrough the Spirit we learn ut the very centre of our h — the three Divine ;ons of the Blessed Trinity. happiness in heaven will iist mainly in enjoying the panionship of the Father, and Holy Spirit.
od the Son became man, !red, died and rose again to :e it possible for us to join with the Father and the y Spirit and all their friends ever. We would have known ling about the Trinity unless id been revealed to us.
o His apostles at the last per Christ spoke at length ut family life with the Father the Holy Spirit, and pointed the role the Spirit would play ur lives. "When the Spirit of h comes He will guide you all truth, for He well not ik on His own authority but .tever He hears He will speak He will declare to you the gs that are to come."
is role is to lead us to Christ through Christ to the ler. He does this by uniting all in love for He is the onified love of the Father the Son and the Son for the ier.
/e all long and pray for a just lasting peace. It is that Holy .it who inspires us to work this. We err if we think we solve our own problems lout other people's problems being resolved. Peace does just happen.
Blessed are the peace cers," said Christ. We have work for it, helped by the • of God. Only a world :pting God's grace will make lock on your door ecessary. Only when we are ,incerely trying to work with Holy Spirit will we be able to t each other completely. ow can you love your ;hbour when he's crooked?" is asked. "Love you crooked ;hbour with your crooked rt," is the answer.
ie are all a bit tainted, a bit t. We need God's grace in er to be cleansed and ightened out. We need daily ) and guidance from the y Spirit.
'atholic theology speaks of "Gifts of the Holy Spirit", se mysterious instincts ised into us at baptism, ch begin to illumine and ct us in our search for God. y give us a well-balanced itual life. This new life ins when the Holy Spirit is
John Gallagher SJ reflects on the inspirational force of the Pentecost
poured into our hearts with the waters of baptism.
This is the "living water" from the side of Christ that fills us with love of God. We grow in this life through the Church and the sacraments and other spiritual aids. It is the Holy Spirit that is the vital force in this development.
Pentecost is often called the "birthday of the Church" because it is from this day that the spreading of the Christian faith began. We are all children of this day for our Christian inheritance and spiritual riches have their beginning here. It must have been a wonderful experience nearly 2000 years ago.
Everybody thought that the apostles were drunk. They were so intoxicated with joy and tremendous wonder that they rushed out into the streets almost babbling with excitement as they shouted to all about the wonderful events. Their eyes were opened, they were shaken to the very roots of their being, they had a completely new vision of life and with a holy madness they wanted to tell the world about it.
The Acts of the Apostles and St Luke share this great excitement, and their words came rushing out as they try to describe the fantastic events; "All at once they heard a noise, a mighty wind blowing from heaven".
"The noise was all around them as they sat in the house, then darting back and forth, and settling on each one of them were quivering tongues of fire. The Holy Spirit was poured into them and they began to shout in all kinds of strange languages as the Spirit gave them the gift of speech."
The ancient hymn Veni creator Spiritus speaks of the Holy Spirit as the "finger of God's right hand". This has always been the work of the Spirit "to renew the face of the earth". As the centuries go by the words of Christ may become commonplace or lose their meaning; it is the Holy Spirit who proclaims the message again and again in new ways, new places, new circumstances, opening up the human mind to the greatness of God's intentions for the human race.
Vatican Council II was described as the "new Pentecost" by the Pope who inaugurated it, Pope John XXIII. "Our duty is not only to guard this precious treasure as if we were concerned only with antiquity but also to dedicate ourselves fearlessly to the task that our era demands of us . . . the substance of the ancient teaching is one thing, the manner in which it is presented is another."