It’s Church’s Birthday! It’s Celebration Time!!
Yes, you read me right. It’s Church’s birthday on Pentecost Sunday. It is celebration time, friends. We traditionally celebrate the beginning of the Church, the Catholic Church, on the solemn feast of Pentecost when Jesus fulfilled his promise to send upon his disciples the Holy Spirit who will lead them into all truth. We celebrate the memorial of that incredible day when people of diverse origin and race, united in one Spirit, spoke of the mighty acts of God. What a beauty in diversity! As people are amazed at how the Spirit made access to God possible to multiple and diverse people, we too should rejoice that God sanctions the unity in diversity among those who worship him. As we read from Acts 2: 1-11, Parthians, Medes, and Elamites and inhabitants of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, and other places could hear praises “of the mighty acts of God” from people of Galilee. It is a diverse but united church.
The Poet Maya Angelou wrote, “In diversity there is beauty and there is strength.” Angelou’s words are accurate and biblical. The single and absolute truth about the Gospel of Jesus Christ is beautifully transmitted and strengthened in multiple expressions worldwide. Truth is one. Truth is beauty and strength when we allow the Holy Spirit to inspire and transform us, friends and followers of Jesus.
In my reflection last week, I wrote: “Let’s pray for a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit. We need to have a living experience of the Holy Spirit.” Our prayer is answered on this Pentecost Sunday. We will experience a new Pentecost in our parish. We will demonstrate love, strength, and beauty in the power of the Holy Spirit. We will celebrate our diversity and yet united in spreading the absolute and redemptive Gospel message of the Risen Christ.
We will bear witness to the beauty and strength of our faith in the Eucharistic Jesus carried in procession through Elizabethtown next Sunday, the feast of Corpus Christ. Please, come out in large numbers to sing and speak “of the mighty acts of God.” Come, let us celebrate the renewal, a new birth of our faith and church through a Corpus Christi procession from the church on the hill to the historical church. As the lyrics of that popular Kool & the Gang’s song say, “It’s celebration time, come on.”
Come Holy Spirit!
Fr. Bernard, OP