DAY THREE GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT “I will send you the Holy Spirit”
SCRIPTURAL READING But when He comes, the Spirit of Truth, He will guide you to all truth. He will not speak on His own but He will speak what He hears and will declare to you the things that are coming. He will glorify Me, because He will take from what is Mine and declare it to you. Everything that the Father has is Mine; for this reason I told you that He will take from you what is Mine and declare it to you...John 16:13-15
MEDITATION “Do not leave Jerusalem but wait for the Gift I told you about, the Gift my Father promised. John baptised with water but in a few days, you will be baptised with the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 1, 4-5) “Baptise all nations in the name of the Father, the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” (Mt. 28, 19) Now this is the abiding presence of the Blessed Trinity.
Come Holy Spirit,
fill the hearts of Thy faithful
and enkindle in them, the fire of Thy love.
Send forth Thy Spirit
and they shall be created,
and Thou shall renew the face of the earth.
Let us pray:
O God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit,
did instruct the hearts of the faithful,
grant that through the same Holy Spirit
we may be ever truly wise
and enjoy His consolation,
Eternal Holy Spirit,in Your mercy, grant my petition:
…………………….(mention your petition)
Most Holy Trinity, Godhead indivisible,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
our first beginning and our last end,
You have made us after Your own image and likeness.
Grant that all the thoughts of my mind,
all the words of my mouth,
all the affections of my heart
and all my actions be always conformed to Your holy Will.
After having seen You here below in Your manifestations and by faith,
may I come at last to see You face to face,
in the perfect possession of You forever in heaven.
Spirit of God in the clear running water. Blowing to greatness the trees on the hill. Spirit of God in the finger of morning. Fill the earth, bring it to birth and blow where you will, blow, blow, blow, till I be, a breath of the Spirit blowing in me.
Thought for the Day – 20 May – The Solemnity of Pentecost, Alleluia!
“If the damned were asked: Why are you in Hell? they would answer: ‘ For having resisted the Holy Spirit.’ And if the saints were asked: Why are you in Heaven? they would answer: ‘For having listened to the Holy Spirit.’ When good thoughts come into our minds, it is the Holy Spirit who is visiting us. The Holy Spirit is a power. The Holy Spirit …. sustained the martyrs. Without the Holy Spirit, the martyrs would have fallen like the leaves from the trees. When the fires were lighted under them, the Holy Spirit extinguished the heat of the fire by the heat of divine love. The good God, in sending us the Holy Spirit, has treated us like a great king who should send his minister to guide one of his subjects, saying, “You will accompany this man everywhere and you will bring him back to me safe and sound.” How beautiful it is, my children, to be accompanied by the Holy Spirit! He is indeed a good Guide and to think, that there are some, who will not follow Him! The Holy Spirit is like a man with a carriage and horse, who should want to take us to Pans. We should only have to say “yes,” and to get into it. It is indeed an easy matter to say “yes”!… Well, the Holy Spirit wants to take us to Heaven; we have only to say “yes,” and to let Him take us there.“
St John Vianney (1786-1859)
“O Divine Spirit, draw us to the highest heaven where Jesus lives forever, interceding for us. Come, fill our hearts with Your fire, show us the way to the Lord that we may find Him shining with beauty and love. Amen”
My most Holy Lord and Sanctifier, If I differ at all from the world, it is because You have chosen me out of the world and have lit up the love of God, in my heart. If I differ from Your Saints, it is because I do not ask earnestly enough for Your grace and for enough of it and because I do not diligently improve what You have given me. Increase in me this grace of love, in spite of all my unworthiness. It is more precious than anything else in the world. I accept it in place of all the world can give me. O give it to me! It is my life. Come Holy Spirit, Come! Amen
O Lord, how manifold are thy works! In wisdom hast thou made them all; the earth is full of thy creatures…Psalm 104:24
REFLECTION – “…the Holy Spirit who came down on the Apostles is the same Spirit who fashioned the world. Pentecost should also be for us a festival of thanksgiving for creation, a cause for reflection on the creative Reason, who is is also manifested in the beauty of the world, as a creative Love.”…Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI) 1985
PRAYER – Lord God, pour out the gifts of the Holy Spirit on all mankind and fulfil now, in the hearts of Your faithful, what You accomplished at the beginning of the world, every second of every day and when the Gospel was first preached on earth. Come, O Holy Spirit, come! We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.
Our Morning Offering – 20 May – Pentecost Sunday, Alleluia!
Veni Sancte Spiritus – The Golden Sequence
Before the Alleluia, proclamation of the Gospel, the ancient sequence Veni Sancte Spiritus (Come, Holy Spirit) is recited or sung on each day of Pentecost week. This hymn appeared first in liturgical books around the year 1200. It has been variously ascribed to Pope Innocent III (1216), to King Robert of France (1031) and even to Saint Gregory the Great (604). Most probably, however, its author was Cardinal Stephen Langton (1128), Archbishop of Canterbury. The poem has been known from medieval times as the “Golden Sequence” because of its richness in thought and expression. Each one of the short stanzas is a sentence in itself, thus facilitating meditation. Below is one of the many translations used today.
Come, Holy Spirit and bring from above
The splendour of Thy light.
Come, father of the poor, come, giver of graces,
Come, light of our hearts.
Best of Consolers, sweet guest of the soul,
And comfort of the weary.
Thou rest in labour, relief in burning toil,
Consoling us in sorrow.
O blessed light, fill the innermost hearts
Of those who trust in Thee.
Without Thy indwelling there is nothing in man,
And nothing free of sin.
Cleanse what is sordid, give water in dryness,
And heal the bleeding wounds.
Bend what is proud, make warm what is cold,
Bring back the wayward soul.
Give to the faithful who trustingly beg Thee
Thy seven holy gifts.
Grant virtue’s reward, salvation in death,
And everlasting joy. Amen. Alleluia.
And when the days of Pentecost were drawing to a close, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a violent wind coming and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them parted tongues as of fire, which settled upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in foreign tongues, even as the Holy Spirit prompted them to speak... (Acts 2, 1-4).
After Jesus had ascended to heaven, the apostles and disciples returned to the Holy City. They remained together in the Upper Room or Cenacle, the place where Jesus had appeared to them and which may well be called, the first Christian church. About a hundred and twenty persons were assembled there. They chose Matthias as an apostle in place of the unhappy Judas; they prayed and waited for the Paraclete.
Ten days had passed, it was Sunday, the seventh Sunday after the resurrection. At about nine o’clock in the morning, as they were together praying fervently, the Holy Spirit descended upon them. Note how all the great theophanies in Christ’s life occurred during the course of prayer. After His baptism, for instance, when Jesus was praying the heavens opened and the Holy Spirit descended in the form of a dove; likewise, it was during prayer at night, that the transfiguration took place on Tabor. Surely too, it was while Mary was praying, that Gabriel delivered his message and the Holy Spirit overshadowed her. Pentecost followed precedent. The small community of Christians had prepared themselves through prayer for the coming of the Paraclete. The same is true at Mass today, every day; through prayer we ready our souls for the advent of the Spirit.
The descent upon the apostles was internal and invisible in nature although accompanied by certain visible phenomena. There came a mighty roar, like the onrush of a violent wind. It came suddenly, from heaven but unlike storms that strike a structure from without, this one penetrated and filled the room where the disciples were gathered. Therefore it was not a natural wind, it was a miracle peculiar to the occasion. A second visible sign consisted in tongues of fire, that descended upon each one present. These fiery tongues gave visible evidence that the Holy Spirit had descended upon them.
Today at Mass, particularly at holy Communion, the power of the Holy Spirit will come down upon us, fiery tongues will not be seen but invisible tongues of fire will not be absent. There was still another external manifestation of the Holy Spirit, the apostles and disciples were enabled to speak various languages.
After the roar of the wind many of Jerusalem’s pilgrims hurried to the Cenacle. Pentecost was one of the three festivals which obliged all Jews to be present in Jerusalem. Jews from distant lands and Jewish converts from paganism too, attended these feasts. As a result, a colourful crowd, speaking a variety of languages, surrounded the house. Now the apostles, who so shortly before had hid in fear behind locked doors, came forth and courageously walked among the multitude, speaking to each in his native tongue. It was indeed amazing! Galileans, and multilingual?
But the malicious too were present, they had the answer. Nothing marvellous at all! Those Galileans were simply drunk and their drunken babble sounded like a foreign language! Peter showed no hesitation in answering the charge. None of their number, he said, were intoxicated, it was but nine o’clock in the morning and at that hour men usually are sober. What the multitude saw was, in fact, the fulfilment of Joel’s prophecy: In those days (of the Messiah), God will pour forth His Spirit upon men and they will prophesy. . . . Then the apostle pointed his words more directly against the accusers, they had killed Jesus, had nailed Him to the Cros; but God had awakened Him and after His departure to heaven, He sent the Holy Spirit.
BEN63198 St. Peter Preaching in Jerusalem (detail of 63197) c.1427 (fresco) by Masolino da Panicale, Tommaso (1383-c.1447) Brancacci Chapel, Santa Maria del Carmine, Florence, Italy Italian, out of copyright
The pilgrims who had heard Peter give this first Pentecostal sermon “were pierced to the heart and said, Brethren, what shall we do? But Peter said to them, Repent and be baptised and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Three thousand responded.
One final question, why the miracle of tongues? In answer, recall the story regarding the tower of Babel. Puffed up by pride, men attempted to build a tower that would touch the heavens. To punish their sin, God confused their speech. Sin causes confusion and division. Now Christ came to gather all men into His Church and thereby to unite them to Himself. This should result in creating but one family of nations again. To this blessed state the miracle of tongues points.
Yes, even we as individuals have a gift of tongues which all men can understand. It is the gift of love infused into us by the Holy Spirit. Love unites, love is a common language, by means of love we can speak to all nations…Excerpted from The Church’s Year of Grace, Pius Parsch
Wishing Holy Mother Church and
you all a Blessed, Holy and love-filled Pentecost! Alleluia!
St Bernadine of Siena O.F.M. (1380-1444) (Optional Memorial)
Bl Albert of Bologna
St Alexander of Edessa
St Anastasius of Brescia
St Aquila of Egypt
St Arcangelo Tadini
Bl Arnaldo Serra and Companions
St Asterius of Edessa
St Austregisilus of Bourges
St Basilla of Rome
St Baudelius of Nîmes
Bl Columba of Rieti
St Ethelbert of East Anglia
Bl Guy de Gherardesca
St Hilary of Toulouse
St José Pérez Fernández
St Lucifer of Caglieri
Bl Maria Angelica Perez
St Plautilla of Rome
St Protasius Chong Kuk-bo
St Rafaél García Torres
St Talaleo of Egea
St Thalalaeus of Edessa
St Theodore of Pavia
St Tomás Valera González
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