When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled, they were all in one place together. And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were.
Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim. (Acts of the Apostles 2:1-4)
Our Catholic Church proclaims seven gifts of the Holy Spirit that help us to sustain the moral life. These are permanent dispositions that make us docile in following the promptings of the Holy Spirit: Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel, Fortitude, Knowledge, Piety, and Fear of the Lord.
In faith, as we accept the gifts of the Spirit, we begin to see effects in our lives. These effects then make changes for the better in our lives and in the world. The tradition of the Church lists twelve fruits of the Holy Spirit, perfections that the Holy Spirit forms in us as the first fruits of eternal glory: Charity, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Generosity, Gentleness, Faithfulness, Modesty, Self-control, and Chastity. (Catechism of the Catholic Church #1830, #1831, #1832)
Come, Holy Spirit, fill my heart with your holy gifts. Let my weakness be penetrated with your strength this very day that I may fulfill the duties of my state in life conscientiously, that I may do what is right and just. Let my charity be such as to offend no one and hurt no one’s feelings; so generous as to pardon sincerely any wrong done to me. Assist me in all the trials of life, enlighten me in my ignorance, advise me in my doubts, strengthen my weakness, help me in all needs and embarrassment, protect me in temptations and console me in all afflictions. Graciously hear me, O Holy Spirit, and pour your light into my heart, my soul and my mind. Assist me to live a holy life and to grow in goodness and grace. Amen. (Samuel Cardinal Stritch)
On this Feast of Pentecost, may we each seek the gift of the Holy Spirit! Take time in prayer in these days of Pentecost to reflect upon the gifts and the fruits of the Holy Spirit.
In what area of your life are you in most need of the Spirit’s help? Then beg the Spirit to touch you in that area of your life.
Allow God’s great gift of the Holy Spirit to transform you!