Reflection: Pentecost

Chinese Mass:Every Sunday 2:15 p.m

Our Lady of the Assumption RC Church, Assumption Priory, Victoria Park Square, Bethnal Green E2 9PB (map)

Mass is conducted in a mix of Cantonese and Mandarin

After Mass you are welcome to join the community for a tea gathering

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[1st Reading – Acts:2:1-11; Ps.103; 2nd Reading – Rom.8:8-17; Gospel – Jn.14:15-16,23-26]

This week’s gospel starts with love: the love for Jesus and the keeping of his commandments.  This verb “to love”, is not just referring to an affection that one shows or an emotion one feels for Jesus.  It is a relationship that one creates with Jesus and therefore it is the result of the acceptance of Jesus and his teaching in one’s life.  This love leads the disciples to keep Jesus’ commandments.  The Father, at Jesus’ request, will send the Holy Spirit to be with those who love Jesus and who keep his commandments.  The Holy Spirit (also known as the ‘Advocate’) will give the disciples the strength they will need to be able to keep Jesus’ commandments and also to continue to love him.

Jesus says that the Holy Spirit will be ‘another Advocate’ who will be with the disciples forever.  On the one hand, the Holy Spirit will take Jesus’ place and create the same relationship with the disciples. On the other hand, the Holy Spirit will be the one who will teach the disciples everything that they will need to know.  The Holy Spirit will also remind them all that Jesus has taught them and will continue with the activities started by Jesus and continue to build on what Jesus has done in his relationship with them.  Furthermore, as Jesus himself was sent by the Father, so will the Holy Spirit, who will not say things from his own accord, but like Jesus, he will say things that he learns from the Father.  The Holy Spirit will continue to build on Jesus’ work and constantly remind them of Jesus’ words.  This in turn will help the disciples to keep Jesus’ commandments and to continue to love Jesus.

Jesus will not be staying with his disciples for much longer, so this was the main reason why Jesus decided to ask the Father to send the Holy Spirit.  The disciples will not have Jesus with them for much longer but will have the Holy Spirit with them ‘forever’.  Therefore the love that the disciples have for Jesus is now to be shown and transmitted to the Holy Spirit and they are to create a relationship with this other ‘Advocate’.  The Holy Spirit will love them and, together with Jesus and the Father, will dwell in them and in those who accept him in their life.

Thus the Holy Spirit, who was present in Jesus’ life from the beginning until the end, can be present in our life as well as long as we will be ready to love Jesus and keep his commandments.  Once we have a relationship with the Holy Spirit, he will become part of our life and then he will remind us of the teachings of Jesus and he will also teach us what we need to learn … to make space for God in our life.  Are we ready to create a relationship with him as with Jesus and with the Father?

“Lord, when the disciples were ready to love you and to keep your commandments you sent the Holy Spirit upon them as their Advocate to remind them of your teachings and to teach them what they needed to learn.  Give us this Holy Spirit so that we too can learn to love you and accept you, the Father and the Holy Spirit in our life.  Thank you Lord!”

 

Fr. Jesmond Pawley, OFM Conv.

(Permission to reproduce on this site by Fr. Jesmond, St. Patrick’s RC Church, Waterloo    http://www.stpatrickwaterloo.org.uk/ )

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