Saturday, 18 May 2013

Veni Sancte Spiritus - The Beauty of Pentecost!

Pentecost is a very BIG feast in the Catholic Church and it is regarded as the birthday of the Church. This special time happens 50 days after Easter Sunday and 10 days after the Ascension of our Lord and it marks the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the apostles. On this particular Sunday, the apostles and the Blessed Virgin Mary were all assembled in the upper Room where they saw Jesus resurrected. “And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them tongues of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them the gift of speech”- Acts 2: 2-4. Now thinking back to what Jesus told his Apostles in John 14:26, “But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you,” and on Pentecost the Holy Spirit came, as Jesus had promised, in the form of tongues of fire and rested upon each one of them and they were filled with the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, and being as spiritually euphoric as they were, they began to preach the Gospel in all of the languages that the Jews who were gathered there spoke, and about 3,000 people were converted and baptized that day; fulfilling the command that Jesus himself gave “Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”- Matthew 28:19 . Do you think in today’s society it is possible to convert 3,000 people in a single day? Through the power of the Holy Spirit, anything is possible!

Like the apostles on the Day of Pentecost, we are called in a similar way to continue the work they started on that day. This should be reflected in our daily lives, of what Jesus himself wants of us, Go into the world and preach the gospel to all creation.”- Mark 16:15. It is sad how people in today’s society find it hard to speak the word of God but find it easy and refreshing to ill-speak others and use obscenities. We are worshipping our enemy while we shun our real and true Master. Since Jesus Christ is no longer physically here on earth as he once was, he reminds us that he is present spiritually. That is why he created each one us, so that we can be his hands, feet, mouth and other functioning parts of our anatomy. We are mere vessels; we depend on God to work in and through us. Unfortunately we take matters into our own hands and we try to “play” God. The Feast of Pentecost comes around once a year, and for some, they choose this time to be “On Fire for the Lord” yet, a week later, that fire tends to extinguish! The question is, ‘what or who causes our fire to go out?’ The answer to that simple question is “Me.”

We let that fire burn out! We allow God’s awesome presence to slip through the cracks in our hands like sand and have to wait a whole year to reclaim it, or in some cases attend a Jesus Explosion or a Conference to reclaim it. Why can’t we keep that joy of the Lord constant in our lives? We have to let God be the flagship of our lives. We must ask God to bless our Children however we must ensure that they are raised to respect and have a personal relationship with Him. We falter when we tell them “Well, you don’t have to go to church today, since you’re tired from lessons or football.” How can you allow your child/children to experience the essence of God in their lives? One of our many missions as Catholics is to bring Christ to others who are in great need! Just like those apostles on the Day of Pentecost, we have to make that our daily modus-operandi, because that is what God expects of us. When we live a life in the Spirit, it is no longer what “I” want but what “God” wants of me. If, for example, God wants you to spend time in prayer more often, then make time from your busy schedule and talk to him, he is always around listening; if he wants you to go to the high ways and by-ways to preach, then swallow that pride and go forth in his name because those apostles were not ashamed or afraid for they allowed the Spirit of God to move them, and so we too have to make the Spirit of God move us. Once we follow these steps, our lives would be different and the joy of the Lord would be constant. The challenged has be issued, it is for us now to accept is!

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