Lord, send out your Spirit and renew the face of the Earth (Psalm 104:30)

Pentecost Day marks the birth of the Christian Church and liturgically it ends the Easter season. The church commemorates the day when the Holy Spirit descended upon a group of Apostles and the Virgin Mary in the form of tongues of fire as promised by Jesus the risen one.

On this Sunday therefore, when we celebrate the feast of Pentecost, we want to come with heart-filled gratitude to God for the gift of the Holy Spirit in our lives which is the life of God in us. The Holy Spirit is a person, a love shared by the Father and the Son, and the fundamental source of the divine life, their breath in the relationship which they share with us.

We want to open our hearts to the God who desires so much to pour out His Spirit in abundance this year to bring newness to us and our world. Today more than ever we need to implore the Holy Spirit to pour into our hearts the life of God who is love as shown to us on Good Friday by Jesus on Calvary.

We know by our catechesis that the Holy Spirit is one of the Persons in the Trinity and the divine power that lets us know who God the Father and God the Son is in our lives. In other words, the Holy Spirit is the personal presence of God and Jesus in our lives and thus guides the entire operation of our faith.  In the creed we proclaim each Sunday, “I believe in the Holy Spirit” and with this belief, we can see, feel, and hear the presence of the Holy Spirit in us and our world. Wherever we are we are moved by the Holy Spirit to do good and be the heart of God in our world. The Holy Spirit is very alive in our lives. It helps us to serve God better each time we are aware of His presence or call upon Him. (Gal 5:16).

The readings of this Sunday invite us to reflect on the experience of the Apostles. The Holy Spirit took away their fears, and became a new people, with hope and purpose. They boldly went out to proclaim the risen Christ relying on the power of the Holy Spirit. Pentecost Sunday reminds us that the Apostles after receiving the Holy Spirit, they went out to share the gifts received with others. They were moved into action to share with others the word of God and many were converted. In the responsorial Psalm, we need to receive a new anointing so that we too may go out to proclaim by our lives the risen Christ. The gospel of John takes us a far when we see the Apostles receiving what Jesus Himself promised them being fulfilled that He will not leave them alone. It was at this moment of encounter that the Apostles received power to forgive and retain sins.

Our world today longs for the gifts of the Holy Spirit more than ever which are wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety and fear of the Lord and the fruits:   charity, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, generosity, gentleness, faithfulness, modesty, self-control, chastity. These are what our world needs today from each one of us to give back to make our communities, workplaces and the world at large a better place.  Let us ask the Holy Spirit to be our friend and companion on our journey of faith.

Come Holy Spirit, fill our hearts and renew the face of the earth. Amen

Nakato Betty, RSCJ and Mbayira Josephine, RSCJ