Saturday, June 07, 2014
Pentecost 2014 A
By Rev. Joe McCloskey, SJ
As a body is one though it has many parts, and all the parts of the body, though many, are one body, so also Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, slaves or free persons, and we were all given to drink of one Spirit. 1 Corinthians 12:12-13
Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” John 20:21-22
Our piety is not simply a statement of how we give the gifts of the Spirit back to God. Our piety is the uniqueness of our gifts of the Spirit shared with others. The fruits of the Spirit develop from our use of the gifts. Peace is what the Apostles received from Christ. Peace keeps us from being a lot of noise and clanging cymbals. Our peace makes people feel safe around us. Our security in the Lord comes from our letting go and letting God handle our problems by our confidence in how well he can use us to make a difference. Piety is the gentleness of a breeze that comes from we-know-not-where and takes us where all too often we are unaware.
Pentecost gives us our freedom to proclaim the good news of Christ. The Apostles were heard in other languages. Speaking in tongues is a wonderful gift even as we make the holy sounds that are the expression of the peace of our hearts. In a community praying there is the overlay of the voice of the spirit at work. Tongues allow one to praise God without searching for words. They are the language of the heart escaping from our hearts on fire with the love the Spirit shared through us. Pentecost is where the Church has its real beginning.
We join ourselves to the work of the Spirit by how our gifts are used for the building up of the church. In John’s Gospel Christ comes to the apostles behind locked doors. The action of Pentecost creates the audiences and gathers the people for the sharing of Christ. Our fears make us hold back. The result of Pentecost is seen in all the ways we share the Christ of our hearts. All the ways the people of God share Christ is Pentecost at work. The more we work at emptying ourselves out for the sake of Christ, the more we have of Christ to share. Christ fills the emptiness that our sharing Christ makes possible. Our emptiness is the call of our hearts for the coming of Christ. The more we share of Christ, the more of Christ we will have to share.