PentecostFATHER GEORGE W. RUTLER
Today all that our Lord had planned by his Incarnation, Death, Resurrection and Ascension is fulfilled when He fills the Church with the Holy Spirit
Last Sunday the largest number of children in the history of our parish made their First Communion with Our Lord. They are very young, but in that moment they became 2,000 years old and, more accurately, they entered heaven on earth. Today, one of our liveliest parishioners, Margaret Bradshaw, celebrates her 106th birthday, with vivid memories of her First Communion nearly a century ago as one of the first beneficiaries of the decision of Pope St. Pius X to extend Communion to children. She gets younger with each Communion.
All this is the measureless gift that Christ gives us by letting us share in the bond of love between Him and His Father. "Pour out your Spirit" we pray on Pentecost, but only because the Holy Spirit has already moved us to want Him. A fourth-century inscription on the gravestone of a Christian in Asia Minor expresses the hope of all who have received the Holy Spirit: "Here sleeps the blessed Chione who has found Jerusalem, for she prayed much."
Pope Benedict XVI is the ninth pope in the lifetime of Margaret Bradshaw. Remembering his own First Communion in 1936, the Pope recently told a child: "I understood that Jesus had entered my heart, He had actually visited me. And with Jesus, God Himself was with me. And I realized that this is a gift of love that is truly worth more than all the other things that life can give."
May the Holy Spirit on Pentecost enliven us to pray as John Donne did:
Father George William Rutler. "Pentecost." From the Pastor (June 12, 2011).
Reprinted with permission of Father George W. Rutler.
Since 1988 his weekly television program has been broadcast worldwide on EWTN. Father Rutler has published 17 books, including: Cloud of Witnesses - Dead People I Knew When They Were Alive, Coincidentally: Unserious Reflections on Trivial Connections, A Crisis of Saints: Essays on People and Principles, Brightest and Best, Saint John Vianney: The Cure D'Ars Today, Crisis in Culture, and Adam Danced: The Cross and the Seven Deadly Sins.
Copyright © 2011 Father George W. Rutler
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