19 May 2013
Extracted from the Acts of the Apostles 2:1-11:
When Pentecost day came round, they had all met in one room, when suddenly they heard what sounded like a powerful wind from heaven, the noise of which filled the entire house in which they were sitting; and something appeared to them that seemed like tongues of fire; these separated and came to rest on the head of each of them.
They were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak foreign languages as the Spirit gave them the gift of speech.
Now there were devout men living in Jerusalem from every nation under heaven, and at this sound they all assembled, each one bewildered to hear these men speaking his own language. They were amazed and astonished.
‘Surely’ they said ‘all these men speaking are Galileans? How does it happen that each of us hears them in his own native language? Parthians, Medes and Elamites; people from Mesopotamia, Judaea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya round Cyrene; as well as visitors from Rome – Jews and proselytes alike – Cretans and Arabs; we hear them preaching in our own language about the marvels of God.’
Extracted from the 1st letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthians: 1 Corinthians 12:3-7,12-13:
No one can say, ‘Jesus is Lord’ unless he is under the influence of the Holy Spirit.
There is a variety of gifts but always the same Spirit; there are all sorts of service to be done, but always to the same Lord; working in all sorts of different ways in different people, it is the same God who is working in all of them.
The particular way in which the Spirit is given to each person is for a good purpose.
Just as a human body, though it is made up of many parts, is a single unit because all these parts, though many, make one body, so it is with Christ.
In the one Spirit we were all baptised, Jews as well as Greeks, slaves as well as citizens, and one Spirit was given to us all to drink.
Extracted from the letter of Saint Paul to the Romans 8:8-17:
People who are interested only in unspiritual things can never be pleasing to God. Your interests, however, are not in the unspiritual, but in the spiritual, since the Spirit of God has made his home in you. In fact, unless you possessed the Spirit of Christ you would not belong to him.
Though your body may be dead it is because of sin, but if Christ is in you then your spirit is life itself because you have been justified; and if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, then he who raised Jesus from the dead will give life to your own mortal bodies through his Spirit living in you.
So then, my brothers, there is no necessity for us to obey our unspiritual selves or to live unspiritual lives. If you do live in that way, you are doomed to die; but if by the Spirit you put an end to the misdeeds of the body you will live.
All who are guided by the Spirit of God are sons of God.
The spirit you received is not the spirit of slaves bringing fear into your lives again; it is the spirit of sons, and it makes us cry out, ‘Abba, Father!’
The Spirit himself and our spirit bear united witness that we are children of God.
And if we are children we are heirs as well: heirs of God and coheirs with Christ, sharing his sufferings so as to share his glory.
The Universal Church celebrated Pentecost Sunday on 19 May 2013, and helped us to recall the 1st “Christian” Pentecost happened in Jerusalem more than 2000 years ago, where all the Apostles and Disciples of Christ were being powerfully anointed with the Holy Spirit and being given with many Spiritual Gifts.
Since then, the Holy Spirit has always been present in the Universal Church and within each TRUE Christian, guiding and carrying them on their pilgrimage to heaven. The Holy Spirit is the greatest gift from God to all Christians; He comes and lives within us, comforting and motivating us, giving us wisdom, courage, love, joy, peace and many other spiritual gifts, helping us to soar to reach the ideals that God wants us to be. He initiates a series of total regenerations within us to transform us into the image of Jesus Christ and helps us to arrive safely in Heaven where each of us would see God face to face.
Here are the Readings that were read in the Eucharistic Celebrations all over the world on Easter Sunday:
1st Reading: Acts of the Apostles 2:1-11 (see above),
Responsorial: Psalm 104:1, 24, 29-31, 34 (see Encouragements-184),
2nd Reading: 1 Corinthians 12:3-7, 12-13 OR Romans 8:8-17 (see above) &
Gospel Reading: John 20:19-23 (see Encouragements-224) OR
John 14:15-16, 23-26 (see Encouragements-237)
We have extracted the Homilies of Blessed Pope John Paul II, Pope Benedict XVI & Pope Francis I based on the aforesaid Readings to share with you, so that you could similarly be encouraged:
SOLEMNITY OF PENTECOST
HOMILY OF HIS HOLINESS JOHN PAUL II
Sunday, 31 May 1998
1. Credo in Spiritum Sanctum, Dominum et vivificantem: I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Giver of life.
With the words of the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed, the Church proclaims her faith in the Paraclete; a faith that is born of the apostolic experience of Pentecost. The passage from the Acts of the Apostles, which today’s liturgy has offered for our meditation, recalls in fact the marvels worked on the day of Pentecost, when with great astonishment the Apostles saw Jesus’ words come true. As was mentioned in the passage from St John’s Gospel proclaimed a few moments ago, on the eve of his Passion he had assured them: “I will pray the Father and he will give you another Counsellor, to be with you for ever” (John 14:16). This “Counsellor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you” (John 14:26).
And the Holy Spirit, coming down upon them with extraordinary power, enabled them to proclaim the teaching of Christ Jesus to the whole world. Their courage was so great, their determination so sure, that they were prepared to do anything, even to give up their life. The gift of the Spirit had released their deepest energies, concentrating them on the mission entrusted to them by the Redeemer. And it will be the Counsellor, the Parakletos, who will guide them in preaching the Gospel to all. The Spirit will teach them the whole truth, drawing it from the wealth of Christ’s word, so that, in turn, they may communicate it to people in Jerusalem and the rest of the world.
2. How can we not give thanks to God for the wonders the Spirit has never ceased to accomplish in these two millenniums of Christian life? Indeed, the event of grace at Pentecost has continued to bear its marvellous fruits, everywhere instilling apostolic zeal, a desire for contemplation, the commitment to live and serve God and our brothers and sisters with complete dedication. Today too, the Spirit sustains great and small acts of forgiveness and prophecy in the Church and gives life to ever new charisms and gifts, which attest to his ceaseless action in human hearts.
An eloquent proof of this is today’s solemn liturgy attended by a vast number of those belonging to movements and new communities, who in these days have held their World Congress in Rome. Yesterday, in this same St Peter’s Square, we enjoyed an unforgettable, festive gathering with songs, prayers and testimonies. We experienced the atmosphere of Pentecost which made visible in a way the Spirit’s inexhaustible fruitfulness in the Church. The movements and new communities, providential expressions of the new springtime brought forth by the Spirit with the Second Vatican Council, announce the power of God’s love which in overcoming divisions and barriers of every kind, renews the face of the earth to build the civilization of love.
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