May 26, 2007

Vigil of Pentecost

Pentecost is one of those rare celebrations--along with Christmas and Easter--that has separate Scriptures for the vigil Mass and for the Mass of the day itself.

At the liturgy tonight, Jesus is in Jerusalem for the feast of Tabernacles. He proclaims of those who believe and will receive the Holy Spirit:
"Rivers of living water will from within him."

The Spirit is not something imposed on us, as it were, from above. Because God has united himself to our very nature in the humanity of Christ, the Spirit dwells within us.

Just as Moses brought forth water from the rock in the desert--and as Paul assures us, "the Rock was Christ"--so will the Spirit empower believers to bring life and refreshment to those who suffer in the danger and deserts of this tired world.

And just as the prophet Ezechiel saw rivers of living water flowing out from under the Temple of the New Jerusalem, so it will be with us who have become, in Christ, temples of the Holy Spirit. The living water is the power of the Resurrection for the renovation and healing of the whole world.

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