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Scripture Reflection - June 4, 2017

Acts 2:11, Ps 104, 1 Cor 12:3-13, Jn 20:19-23 “The love of God has been poured into our hearts through the spirit of God dwelling within us. “   Rm. 5:5

The glorious feast of Pentecost Sunday, which we observe today, beckons us to come and join in a birthday celebration for the Christian Church.  On this day, centuries ago, a “new beginning” was born and the grace-filled energy of the Holy Spirit was released.  As we are told, in the Acts of the Apostles, Mary and the disciples of Jesus were gathered in the upper room where the Last Supper had occurred.  Here, in this space, they huddled together, questioning and searching for a new sign of hope – what would be the next step for them to take on their journey into a new way life?  Undoubtedly, the human vibes of anxiety, bewilderment, and fear were strong among them and these feelings had the power to paralyze.  

We are told however, God had a plan and seized this moment to bring about dramatic change for the good.  Suddenly - from nowhere – “there came from the sky a noise like a driving wind and there appeared to them tongues as of fire…and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit.”  Significantly, these novices of Jesus breathed in the divine spark of new life, they were transformed by God’s peace and filled with the gifts of the Spirit!  As confirmed Christians, they set out on a mission unafraid; spontaneously, they left the upper room “on-fire” with love - to preach, to teach and to serve others through the beginning stages of a New Way – the Christian Church.

In the second reading, Paul reminds Christians, that the grace of the first Pentecost will remain “alive and well” till the end of time.   He says: “To each individual, the manifestation of the spirit is given for some benefit.”  Every person is created by God with unique gifts, and is equipped to do God’s work during his/her period of time on earth, while bringing about the completion of Jesus’ salvific mission.

Listen carefully then…and hear today’s message - heed God’s call: - that is – to move more deeply into a personal relationship with the third person of the Blessed Trinity.  God’s love, the Holy Spirit, dwells in us; and offers every believer transformative power, to embrace Holy Energy, in all facets of life.  Indeed, how enriching it can be, for us to digest the profound impact of the Spirit’s abiding presence within!   

Clearly, today’s the day, to cultivate this relationship; and pray daily, the petition included in this morning’s liturgical prayer: “Come, Holy Spirit, come – heal our wounds, our strength renew, on our dryness pour your dew.”   Also, it’s important to routinely designate a space of quiet prayer - and contemplate the Spirit’s movement within; then, take to heart, these words of wisdom, written in the first letter to the Thessalonians: Quench not the Spirit. Disdain not prophecy. Scrutinize everything and build on what is good!

Sister Shirley Jeffcott, OP


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