Weekly Words from The Rock
Jesus Christ is Risen. Alleluia. Alleluia. For fifty days, we have celebrated and proclaimed this message. With Pentecost, the Season of Easter culminates and moves us back into Ordinary Time. Pentecost surrounds the giving of the Holy Spirit to the Apostles. It is the birthday of the Church. I want to share with you some of our beliefs around the Holy Spirit with the following taken from the United States Catholic Catechism for Adults, pages 101-110.
Question: What is our faith regarding the Holy Spirit? Answer: To believe in the Holy Spirit is to profess that the Holy Spirit is one of the persons of the Holy Trinity, consubstantial with the Father and the Son: “with the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified.” (citing the Nicene Creed)
“The Holy Spirit is dynamic, transforming our bodies into temples of God and our souls into dwelling places for Christ. Sometimes called the Paraclete, a term that describes him as advocate and consoler, the Holy Spirit wants to fill us with inspiration and encouragement”
Question: What are images of the Holy Spirit in Scripture? Answer: In Scripture, some of the images of the Holy Spirit are fire, cloud and light, seal, hand, finger of God and dove (page 107).
Before the Ascension, Jesus said to his Apostles: “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria and to the ends of the earth” (page 108).
Question: How is water a symbol of the Holy Spirit? Answer: Water signifies the Holy Spirit’s action in Baptism, since after the invocation of the Holy Spirit it becomes the efficacious sacramental sign of new birth (page 107).
Whenever the Father sends his Son, he always sends his Spirit: Their mission is inseparable (page 108).
The gifts of the Holy Spirit are wisdom, understanding, counsel (right judgment), fortitude (courage), knowledge, piety (reverence), and fear of the Lord (wonder and awe in God’s presence) (page 108).
The fruits of the Holy Spirit are charity, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, generosity, gentleness, faithfulness, modesty, self-control and chastity (page 108).
Both the Hebrew and Greek word for the Spirit originally meant a “breath,” or “air,” or “wind.” The Holy Spirit was thus understood to be the source of inspiration, life, and movement within God’s people (page 104-105).
The Holy Spirit builds up, animates, and sanctifies the Church. He prepares us to go out and bring others to Christ. He opens our minds to understand Christ’s death and resurrection. He makes present for us the mystery of Christ, especially in the Eucharist, and brings us to communion with God that we may bear much fruit (page 109).
God’s blessings! Father Schuster