Peace Be with You

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Pentecost Sunday 

 

John 20:19-23

On the evening of that first day of the week, when the doors were locked, where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. The disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. 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. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained.”

 

Opening Prayer: Lord, on this most special day, send your Holy Spirit into my heart like never before. Bless me with a sense of your presence and allow this prayer to open me further to do you will in all things. 

 

Encountering Christ: 

 

  1. Peace, a Priceless Gift: The Holy Spirit brings us the gift of peace (CCC 736). We cannot possess this peace on our own. It is a state of being. The Spirit’s peace dwells in our heart, only if we nurture and protect it. God’s peace does not mean we won’t suffer  noise, challenges, catastrophes, or anger. His peace does not insure shelter from life’s storms; it is a safe haven in the eye of a storm. This peace allows us to rise above trespasses against us. It brings us contentment when no one praises us. It mollifies our anger when others despise us. The peace of God is not of this world (Phillipians 4:6), but we certainly don’t want to live in this world without it! Come Holy Spirit!
  2. The Spirit Lives in All of Us: By our baptism, we were made children of the Triune God. Our bodies became temples of the Holy Spirit. When we allow the Holy Spirit to fill us, he floods every room of our temple. When the Holy Spirit floods our soul, we know in our hearts what he wants us to do, who he wants us to be. We have wisdom. We have direction. We are empowered. St. Catherine of Siena said, “Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.” That’s the epitome of being filled with the Holy Spirit.
  3. The Breath of God: Not all Catholics pray to the Holy Spirit as often as they do to Jesus or God the Father. The Spirit is nevertheless very active in our spiritual life, so it benefits us to know more about him. These verses of Scripture tell us that when Jesus breathed on the Apostles, they received the Spirit, the Breath of Heaven. Scripture and the Catechism teach us that the Spirit is our advocate, the Paraclete; Spirit of truth and wisdom; Spirit of holiness and justice, Spirit of understanding and counsel; Spirit of love and joy; Spirit of peace and patience; Spirit of longanimity and meekness; Spirit of benignity and goodness; Love substantial of the Father and the Son; Love and life of saintly souls; and Fire ever burning (Litany to the Holy Spirit). The Spirit is the dynamic love between the Father and the Son, first shared with us through Baptism. How blessed we are when we come to know and love the Holy Spirit.

 

Conversing with Christ: Come Holy Spirit, fill my heart with the fire of your love. Renew me in faith, hope, and charity. Be my comfort and guidance. Amen.

 

Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I ask that you flood my temple with a new and powerful movement of the Holy Spirit.

 

For Further Reflection: For more about St. Catherine of Siena, read Little Talks with God, by Paraclete Press.

 

Karen Meiman, a former newspaper writer, editor, and photographer is a mom of four children and lives in a log cabin on fifty acres in Northern Kentucky. You can contact her at kyclone@aol.com.

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