Posted by: fvbcdm | May 25, 2012

Feast of Saint Bede the Venerable (25 May 2012)

We come now to the solemnity of Pentecost, which is also the end of our Easter Season for this year of our Lord, 2012.  It is true that the two Sundays following it are feast days rather than Sundays in the Ordinary Time, but that is because the Church wants to celebrate two extremely important doctrines: that of the Blessed Trinity (the three divine Persons in the one God) and that of the real Presence of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament which has been called “Corpus Christi” for centuries, meaning “The Body of Christ.”


Pentecost has been called the Birthday of the Church by those who understand its meaning and importance in sacred history.  God our Father created the first man—Adam—from the material of this world and then blew his own divine breath into the man’s mouth and nostrils.  The man came alive, and began to live in the image and likeness of God, enjoying intelligence, free will, and many kinds of inventiveness and genius far above the world of matter from which he had been made.   In a similar way, when Our Savior wished to establish the Church, he used a number of component parts to fashion  the body of the Church.  Human beings, the new law of doctrine and morality, and the sacraments.  But, as in the case of Adam, something was missing.  This new “body” lacked a soul.  And so, the Savior ascended into heaven and from there sent down a soul for the entire Church.  And that soul is none other than the third Person of the Blessed Trinity: the Holy Spirit.  When the Spirit came upon the young Church, He converted this group of people and doctrines and sacraments into a single, living, functioning reality which from then on, would be the Body of Christ and would bring salvation to millions. 


The Church began to live by the life with which the Spirit animates it.  It is in this sense that Pentecost was the birthday of the Church, and so, this weekend, we celebrate this marvelous birthday.  The Spirit came upon the young Church in the form of wind and fire.  Wind, which means the same thing as “spirit” in the ancient understanding of things; fire, which brings brightness and warmth to all it touches. You and I are filled with this divine breath or spirit, and warmed and brightened by the fire of God’s love. Let us all try to celebrate Pentecost with as much understanding and devotion as we possibly can, welcoming into our hearts, both individually and collectively, the Spirit of our Creating, Loving, Redeeming God.  Thank you for seeking God’s truth. God bless you.  Father Victor Brown, O.P.

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