Pentecost

Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful.
And kindle in them the fire of your love.
Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created.
And you will renew the face of the earth. 
 
Wishing all our viewers the fullness of the Spirit this Pentecost.

The Christian holy day of Pentecost, which is celebrated on the seventh Sunday after Easter, commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles, Mary, the mother of Jesus and other followers of Jesus while they were in Jerusalem, as described in the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 2:1–31).  Many Christians mark this date as the beginning or the birth of the Christian Church as we know it. 

Historically, Pentecost (Shavout) is a Jewish Feast celebrating the giving of the Torah and the summer wheat harvest. It was celebrated 50 days after the Passover and was marked by pilgrims coming to Jerusalem from all over the world to celebrate the event.

The Day of Pentecost is celebrated 50 days after Easter in Western branches of Christianity. Church services on this day are marked by red vestments and banners signifying the fiery winds of the Holy Spirit.  

In the New Testament, the Acts of the Apostles, we read about the event on the Day of Pentecost.

When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them. (Acts 2:1-4, NIV)

Immediately, the disciples were filled with the Holy Spirit, causing them to speak in tongues. The crowds of visitors were astonished because every pilgrim heard the apostles speaking to him or her in their own foreign language. Some people in the crowd thought the apostles were drunk.

Seizing the moment, the Apostle Peter stood and addressed the crowd gathered that day. He explained that the people were not drunk, but empowered by the Holy Spirit. This was the fulfillment of the prophecy in the Old Testament that the Holy Spirit would be poured out on all people. It marked a turning point in the early church. With the Holy Spirit’s empowerment, Peter preached boldly to them about Jesus Christ and God’s plan of salvation.

Peter told them to repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of their sins. He promised that they, too, would receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Taking the gospel message to heart, Acts 2:41 records that about 3,000 people were baptized and added to the Christian church on that Day of Pentecost.

Let us be filled with the Spirit of God, Alleluia.

 

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