“When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled, they were all in one place together. And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were. Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim.”
Dear Parishioners and Friends,
Happy Mother’s Day to all mothers and for all women who love and nurture others.
Next weekend we celebrate the Feast of Pentecost. This is the traditional time many will wear the color red at mass and/or ring a hand bell during the Gloria as we remember the "tongues of fire" described in the first chapter of the Book of Acts. The disciples, once filled with fear, now knew with certainty that God was with them as Jesus sent the Paraclete, the Holy Spirit, to fill them with gifts that would fortify them and give them courage, even the ability to speak various languages so that the Gospel could be proclaimed.
There is no doubt that this event was a powerful one. They emerged from that encounter with God fully transformed from fear to tremendous courage. This courage meant that even if life itself were threatened (and it would be) because they proclaimed the saving name of Jesus, then the disciples would unanimously give their own lives to faithfully proclaim the Gospel without hesitation. They knew that even persecution and death could not suppress the plan of God. Jesus has been crucified and put to death, but he has also risen from the dead!
For many people living the Christian faith, even in modern times, persecution and death are the reality of living the Gospel. But with Jesus, and with the gifts of the Holy Spirit, nothing will truly stop the plan of God that is still unfolding today. As we hear in Romans 8:35, "Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?" No, because in all of these things we overcome these struggles because of the Holy Name of Jesus.
Don't forget the color red and your bell!
May God bless you this week!