Happy Birthday! The Church celebrates its beginning today on Pentecost Sunday, when the Holy Spirit filled the hearts of the faithful, sending them out to spread the Gospel, and the Church was born. In the first reading from the Acts of the Apostles, we hear of how the Holy Spirit came to rest on all of the gathered disciples, and people from across the nations could hear and understand all that was being proclaimed in their native tongue – even though all the speakers were from Galilee. Today at some of the masses, the readings or prayers may be proclaimed in other languages – a celebration of the various gifts that we have been given, as well as the universality of the Church. We, as Roman Catholics, are from all nations on the earth and are all called to proclaim the Gospel wherever we are.
All of our music for this weekend focuses on the Holy Spirit – either on the gifts we receive from the Holy Spirit, or the Holy Spirit as the third person of the Holy Trinity, or on how we are called forth, with the gifts of the Holy Spirit, to go out into the world and proclaim the glory of God. We have a sequence sung, just like on Easter Sunday and before the Gospel reading, which further invites the Holy Spirit to come into each of us and act in our lives in all ways. We end our service, and the Easter season, with the double Alleluia dismissal being proclaimed for one final time by our deacons until next Easter Sunday.
A little quiz – what are the gifts of the Holy Spirit that we are celebrating today?
The seven gifts of the Holy Spirit: wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord. Choose one of the gifts each day and work on it!