|Egino Weinert- Germany|
PENTECOST is the feast of the universal Church which commemorates the Descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles, fifty days after the Resurrection of Christ. Pentecost Sunday is one of the most ancient feasts of the Church. It is mentioned in the Acts of the Apostles. Jews from all over were gathered in Jerusalem to celebrate the Jewish feast. On that Sunday, ten days after the Ascension of Our Lord, the Apostles and the Blessed Virgin Mary were gathered in the upper room, where they had seen Jesus after His Resurrection.
"And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak with other languages, as the Spirit gave them utterance. And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven. Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language".
Peter stated that this event was the beginning of a continual outpouring that would be available to all believers from that point on, Jews and Gentiles alike. (Acts 2:39)
This is why Pentecost is often called "the birthday of the Church." On this day, with the descent of the Holy Spirit, Christ's mission is completed, and the New Covenant is inaugurated. It's interesting to note that St. Peter, the first pope, was already the leader and spokesman for the Apostles on Pentecost Sunday (Acts 2:14).
|Dr. He Qi|
The liturgical celebrations of Pentecost in Western churches are rich and varied. The main sign of Pentecost in the West is the color red. It symbolizes joy and the fire of the Holy Spirit. It also symbolizes the renewal of life, the coming of the warmth of summer, and the growth of the Church at and from the first Pentecost.
We sing the glorious Veni Creator Spiritus ("Come Creator Spirit"), a hymn believed to have been written by Rabanus Maurus in the 9th century. We sing the original Latin text in Gregorian Chant. As an invocation of the Holy Spirit it is sung during the liturgical celebration of the feast of Pentecost at both Terce and Vespers. Interestingly enough it is also sung at occasions such as the entrance of Cardinals to the Sistine Chapel, when electing a new pope, as well as at the consecration of bishops, the ordination of priests, when celebrating the sacrament of Confirmation, the dedication of churches, the celebration of synods or councils, the coronation of kings, the profession of members of religious communities and other similar solemn events.
|Ferdnanda Baffa y Jorge Tarifa- Argentina|
Come, Holy Ghost, Creator blest,
and in our hearts take up Thy rest;
come with Thy grace and heav'nly aid,
To fill the hearts which Thou hast made.
O Comforter, to Thee we cry,
Thou heav'nly gift of God most high,
Thou Fount of life, and Fire of love,
and sweet anointing from above.
O Finger of the hand divine,
the sevenfold gifts of grace are thine;
true promise of the Father thou,
who dost the tongue with power endow.
Thy light to every sense impart,
and shed thy love in every heart;
thine own unfailing might supply
to strengthen our infirmity.
Drive far away our ghostly foe,
and thine abiding peace bestow;
if thou be our preventing Guide,
no evil can our steps betide.
Praise we the Father and the Son
and Holy Spirit with them One;
and may the Son on us bestow
the gifts that from the Spirit flow.
|Sawai Chinnawong- Thailand|
|Jyoti Sahi- India|
|Solomon Raj- India|