Celebrating “The God with Feathers”


By Sister Catherine Cleary, OSB

Today our church celebrates the feast of Pentecost, so called for the “Pente,” or 50 days after Easter Sunday.

You know the story: after the crucifixion, the Apostles  were  gathered in the Upper Room when  the Holy Spirit descended on  them (Acts 2:1-42).

Who is that?

Of the 3 persons in the Holy Trinity, I suspect the Holy Spirit is least known.

When I asked a 9-year-old student of mine if he knew who it was, he responded, “You mean the God with feathers?”

The gifts of the Holy Spirit are wisdom, understanding, counsel,  strength, knowledge, and of fear of the Lord (Isaiah, 11:2).  We can pray to the Holy Spirit for these gifts for ourselves.

St. Paul tell us that the fruits of the Holy Spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians, 5:22). We would do well to pray daily for any one of these wonderful traits, as well.

Pentecost signifies more than a celebration of the Holy Spirit:

It’s a celebration of the birthday of the Church, for it was through the coming of the Holy Spirit that the new Church began to form. It also marks the beginning of the active apostolic work of the Church.

Happy Pentecost!

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