Pentecost marked the beginning of the Church. The Risen Christ had returned to his divine glory, but remained with the Apostles in the fullness of his divine power by setting his Holy Spirit upon them.
Given Power by the Spirit
Jesus no longer could be seen by the human eye, but he was with the Apostles even more intimately than ever. His presence, his power, as the Risen Lord gave them energy, confidence and wisdom they had lacked before. When the Spirit was given to them, the Apostles knew that the Risen Saviour was not just a powerful memory, but a live and active person, Jesus Christ, still with them. He was God, living in their hearts, enlightening their minds and guiding their actions so they could give human witness to the divine Word. The disciples were strengthened, authorized and guided by the presence of the Spirit to be the Church. That is, Jesus Christ and his salvation would be brought to the world through them.
Each of us has been Baptized with water and the Spirit and have the same mission as the first disciples. Though we may not always be very good at letting the Spirit speak to our hearts, we are called to show Christ’s love. Though we have many fears that limit our actions, the Spirit is ready to empower us. In our prayer, we can ask Christ to help us welcome the direction of the Holy Spirit so that ours may be lives of faithful witness.
Do you remember a time when you acted – despite fear or uncertainty – to do something important? What result did this have in your own life, in your heart?
We will attempt a live ‘Zoom’ virtual format for our Annual Meeting on Thursday, June 4, beginning at 7:30pm, with reports on the finances, the past year and preparations for the year to come. Please see the announcement for details about how to join us.
May the Holy Spirit fill us with the peace and joy that are meant for us in Christ.
The Covid-19 Virus
Emergency extended to June 9
On May 28 Archbishop Prendergast released a statement that reads in part:
“. . . . we are awaiting guidelines being prepared under the auspices of the Bishops of Ontario to safely reopen our churches. . . . We are mindful that preparations for the return to celebrations of the Mass and sacraments will take a great deal of organization and work in order to maintain a healthy environment to prevent further spread of the coronavirus. . . . we foresee that our churches will remain closed at least until the end of June. If the government’s emergency orders are lifted sooner, we will adjust accordingly.
“. . . All social and other religious events normally held during the summer months are cancelled at least until August 31. This directive is contingent on governmental directions as noted above. It includes parish dinners and picnics; yard sales and bazaars; and national religious festivals and pilgrimages.
“We continue to pray for an end to the pandemic, for all who suffer illness, for those who care for them and provide essential services, for those who have died and for those who have lost loved ones. . . . .”
Go to https://catholicottawa.ca/ for the full letter.
Implementing the re-opening of the church for Sunday Mass will require extra volunteers. Ideally, we are looking for people under sixty in good health who do not live with others who have ‘underlying health issues’. When we have a better idea of what and when, we will make it known. Please think about what you could do.
I have been praying more than usual these last weeks (it is my job!) and I have noticed that while praying for others, I am paying more attention to their reality. Also, many whom I have not thought about in some time are coming to mind. So in this time of quiet and isolation, prayer is literally bringing me closer to others. This is not surprising, because when you and I pray for others it is an act of real love, our love connected to God’s love – in all its power – and is truly a blessing for them.
Whether it is through the formal prayer of the Church, the prayer of Spiritual Communion, through novenas, the rosary, devotions or simply heart-felt conversations with the Lord, let us continue to pray for one another, our community and for those whose research and dedication will make it possible for human contact to once again be a source of blessing.