Happy Pentecost! This wonderful feast is the birthday of the Church. Today’s readings speak of the role of the Holy Spirit within the Church and in our everyday lives. It is the Spirit that enabled the Apostles to speak of the the wonders of God in many tongues (Acts 2:11). It is the Spirit that enables us to discern God’s will, to listen to God, and to have the courage to respond to that call.
The work of the Spirit is vividly shown in religious life. There are “different forms of service” (1 Co. 12:4), but the same Lord and the same desire: Christ. And so, the Church is enriched with active communities of nurses and teachers, missionaries and social workers, as well as contemplative monastics and hermits, monastics. Different forms, but serving the same Lord and working toward union with God—the goal of religious life. The Spirit is in our midst daily. I can only speak from my own experience: in my few years as a nun I can see the work of the Spirit in our daily lives. It is the Spirit that enables us to “listen with the ear of our hearts” (RB Prologue); to obey without delay (RB 5); to “abandon whatever is at hand and hasten with the greatest speed” to the Divine Office (RB 43). And the Spirit helps the juniors to honor the seniors, and the seniors to love their juniors (RB 63). It is with our hearts full of gratitude and joy that we join the Church today in singing: Come, Holy Spirit, come!