- Acts of the Apostles 2:1-21 or
- Ezekiel 37:1-14
- Psalm 104:25-35, 37
- Romans 8:22-27
- John 15:26-27; 16:4b-15
God has opened the hearts of the faithful people by sending them the light of his Holy Spirit. We pray that God will give us right judgement in all things and joy in the strengthening of the Holy Spirit.
In today’s reading from Acts of the Apostles, we hear of the experience of the apostles on the Day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit filled them and they were able to tell people of “every nation” under heaven in their own languages the great things God has done for us.
The church began in the passionate blaze of the Spirit, when boundaries of languages and cultures were transcended for a time and all heard the good news in their own language. The consuming fervor of the disciples communicated itself to all who encountered them and allowed for the remarkable spread of the Gospel throughout the known world.
Ecstasy is only part of the story, however, The work of living the Gospel depends more on sure, slow, steady, patient work – attentiveness, prayer, sacrifice, action. We continue to savor the Pentecost moments – the ecstatic experience of being released in the dance of the Spirit – but we live in the steady gaze of the first disciples, encouraging us to grow slowly, steadily deeper into an equally passionate commitment in the Spirit as those first disciples did.
As the Wind is your symbol, so forward our goings. As the dove, so launch us heavenward. As water, so purify our spirits. As a cloud, so abate our temptations. As dew, so revive our languor. As fire, so purge out our dross. Amen. (Christina Rossetti, “The Complete Poems of Christina Rossetti, vol. 2.” Louisiana State University Press, 1979.)
Visit the Prayer Book Guide’s page on Pentecost for reflection questions and more about this feast day.