• Wartakanlah Injil kepada segala makhluk.
    Mrk 16:15

  • 你们往普天下去, 向一切受造物宣传福音
    谷 16:15

  • Everything is possible by the power of the Holy Spirit’s Grace.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • Segala sesuatu menjadi mungkin dalam kekuatan karunia Roh Kudus.
    St. Arnold Janssen

  • 我当传教士不是为主牺牲,而是上主给我的最大恩赐

  • Với sức mạnh Ân Huệ của Chúa Thánh Thần, Mọi việc đều có thể được.
    St Arnoldus Janssen

  • Preach the Gospel to the whole creation./Anh em hãy đi khắp tứ phương thiên hạ, loan báo Tin Mừng cho mọi loài thọ tạo
    Mk 16:15

  • There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit.
    1 Cor 12:4

  • And the Word became flesh and lived among us.
    Jn 1:14

  • Let the word of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you.
    Col 3:16

  • To proclaim the Good News is the first and greatest act of love of neighbour.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • 传扬天国福音是第一且最大的爱近人行动

  • Có nhiều đặc sủng khác nhau, nhưng chỉ có một Thần Khí/
    1 Cor. 14:4

  • 圣言成了血肉,寄居在我们中间
    若 1:14

  • Ada rupa-rupa karunia, tetapi Roh satu
    1 Kor 12:4

Friday, 07 June 2019 12:22

Pentecost Sunday - 2019

Written by Fr Elmer Ibarra SVD


Pentecost Sunday
John 20:19-23

Fr Elmer Ibarra 150 BestLet me start with a story that I read from an article by a good friend of mine, Fr Atilano Corcuera, SVD. A contractor was asked to make a building for homeless blind people. He wanted to cut corners and thus earn more profit by making rooms without windows. He thought that anyway the patients were blind and can’t see so he thought it would make no difference if the rooms had no windows. As the clients moved in, at first it seemed as though everything was working fine. However, as time went by, the clients started becoming sick and even a couple died. When a doctor was called to see the problem, the doctor said that even if the clients are blind, a room without a window makes the air stale as there’s no ventilation. And the sunshine can’t come in so there’s no warmth inside the rooms even if the blind people can’t see the light. So windows were installed and in no time at all things started to improve. And the clients started to get better and had more life than before and more importantly, no more sick clients.

Today, we celebrate the feast of Pentecost. In the first reading, we see the disciples huddled in a presumed locked room fearful of the Jews. Good thing that they still followed the instructions of Jesus before he ascended - to stay in Jerusalem. Then all of a sudden, there was a strong wind that entered the house and then the Holy Spirit arrived as tongues of fire and descended on them and they were filled by the spirit. With this they were transformed from fearful men to courageous disciples ready to proclaim the message of Jesus Christ. They were so filled by the Holy Spirit that everybody seemed to understand the disciples even if they came from different countries.

Pentecost Holy Spirit 450The feast of Pentecost has Jewish roots like many of our Christian feasts. The word Pentecost is the Greek word of the Hebrew’s Festival of Weeks, which is a harvest festival. More importantly, it is the day the Jews celebrate as the day Moses received the Ten Commandments 50 days after the Exodus. And Jews consider this day as the start of Judaism. For us Christians, we celebrate this day as the coming of the Holy Spirit and the start of Christianity as we know it. Some theologians would even say that this is the anniversary of the Church.

For some of us, we celebrate Pentecost as the Feast of the Holy Spirit. And one of the aspects of the Holy Spirit is its ability to unite. In the book of Genesis, when human beings started challenging the authority of God by building the tower of Babel in an effort to stay in one place therefore defying the commandment of God to disperse, God confused them by having them speaking different languages instead of the one language that they were used to. So then, they couldn’t continue with their effort of building the tower. However, on the feast of Pentecost, when human beings became humble before God, the Holy Spirit made us understand God’s message even in whatever language.

Unfortunately, we live in a world where the message of God is being drowned out by the message of money and materialism. The tower of Babel is now replaced with towers of office buildings dedicated to make more money. We are now challenging God by speaking the language of profit and how to make it more and more to the comfort of a few but to the detriment of many.

We as Christians are called by the Spirit to continue preaching the message of Christ. The message that somehow may make us poor if we live its principles. The message that sometimes would make life difficult because it tells us to love our enemies instead of hating them. But it is a message that if we preach and live it out, it will make our hearts humble and peaceful as well.

St Joseph Freinademetz, one of the first Divine Word Missionaries who went to China where he had to struggle to learn the language, once said and let me paraphrase it: “Let us preach with the language that everybody understands and that is the language of love.” As we celebrate Pentecost Sunday and the end of Easter, let us be open and be moved by the power of the Holy Spirit. Let us continue to preach with the language of love.



Last modified on Friday, 07 June 2019 12:28