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4 June 2017 | Pentecost


El Greco Jesus with Woman at the Well MASSES: SAT: 5:00 PM; SUN: 8:00, 10:00 AM, 12:00, 4:00 PM; DAILY: 9:00 AM CONFESSIONS: Mon-Sat: 8:30 AM; Sat: 4:00-4:45 PM M s g r . M i k e H e h e r , P a s t o r , [email protected], 562 -431-0721 Ext. 14 F r . B e n T r a n , P a r o c h i a l V i c a r , [email protected], 562 -431-0721 Ext. 11 F r . R o b e r t V i d a l , P a s t o r E m e r i t u s , [email protected] D e a c o n P e t e r N g u y e n , [email protected] A m y P a p a g e o r g e s , D i r e c t o r o f F a i t h F o r m a t i o n , [email protected], 562 -431-0721 Ext. 16 J y l l i a n R h o d e s , Y o u t h M i n i s t r y / C o n f i r m a t i o n , [email protected], 562 -431-0721 Ext. 15 J a n C o o p e r , F r o n t O f f i c e , [email protected]

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St. Anne

4 June 2017



entecost is an ancient feast, one of three when Israel had to present itself before Yahweh in Jerusalem each year. The word Pentecost indicates a feast that is celebrated “fifty days” following Passover. Its meaning has evolved over the centuries. Pentecost started as a celebration of the harvest, a day of joy and thanksgiving, during which the first fruits produced by the land were offered to God. Then the feast came to be thought of as an anniversary of the covenant with God which was completed fifty days that followed the great Exodus from Egypt. After his resurrection Jesus had promised his disciples “within a few days you will be baptized in the Holy Spirit” (Acts 1:5). The gift of the Holy Spirit and the signs that accompanied it—the wind and the fire—are like other manifestations of God found in the Hebrew Bible. The apostles praise the wonders of God by “speaking in tongues” which, although unintelligible in themselves, the Acts of the Apostles reports that “each one heard them speaking in his own language” (2:6). The miracle of each one being able to understand these tongues was a sign of the vocation of the Church to go out and share the good news with all the nations. Christ, dead, risen and exalted at the right hand of the Father completed his work by sending the Holy Spirit on the apostles. Pentecost is the fullness of Easter. At the beginning of creation, all people spoke a common language. When some of them, wanting to make a name for themselves, started building a tower to reach up to heaven, God came down to take a look. For their hubris God confused their language so they could not communicate with each other. Just as God predicted, that stopped the

building of the city with its great tower. The division made at Babel finds its opposite here at Pentecost and is its healing. Pentecost is also a graduation day for the apostles and their speaking in tongues was their commencement address. From then on, the saving mission was not Jesus’ alone but also theirs to go out in his name and to gather the Church through their preaching, baptizing and formation of communities of believers wherever they went. With the gifts and charisms given to them, they had what they needed to accomplish this dynamic apostolic work. The Church lives in the fullness of time now which will be completed when, on the last day, the Lord will return in glory. By temperament I am not particularly charismatic. I went to some charismatic prayer services when I was younger but never got close to being “slain in the Spirit” as they called it. My experience of the Holy Spirit is more like the prophet Elijah; after surviving a great fire and an earthquake, he put on his mantle and stood at the entrance of his cave because he had heard a tiny, whispering sound and knew it was God. However the Holy Spirit comes to you—whether with signs and wonders or in the silence of your heart—you will know it because it changes your life. Y