Monday, May 24, 2010

Belated Pentecost Reflection

“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 filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim.” (Acts 2: 2-11)

On that day of Pentecost, a fire was lit; it burned in the hearts of all disciples of Jesus. They went out and began proclaiming the Good News, by word and actions, and they passed on that fire to others. During times of persecutions, the flame may have dwindled, but it continued to burn in the hearts of the survivors. It would eventually spread throughout the world.

Now it appears to some that the flame is dying out, in Europe, England, Canada, and the United States. A church historian would describe this area as “the ice belt.” Aspects of modern culture, rampant consumerism, breakdown of civility, loss of trust in Church leadership, have dampened the flame. Many are looking to the faith communities of the southern hemisphere to keep the flame alive. But I say that as long as there is a tiny flicker in our communities, in our hearts, the Spirit can blow, and the flame will burst forth again.

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