May 28, 2023

Someone dies and we say he kept his spirit alive to the end; or we say that ‘his spirit lives on’.
A word we talk of easily.
It’s something elusive, you can’t pin it down. It comes from somewhere. Maybe from parents, a spirit of endurance or being able to make it through tough time; or from our prayer and faith.
We talk of good team spirit, or of a person who kept joyful and courageous to the end.
Today is the feast of the Spirit of God, alive, active and joyful.

The flame of the Spirit of love is the flame of God. The tongues of fire over the apostles and the followers of Jesus were flames of love, the Spirit of God that would burn on the inside forever. Pentecost is the flame of God’s own love, given to his followers to mark the birth of the community, the body of Jesus, the church.

It is the spirit of forgiveness always, a gift of the first Pentecost. Did this blow in our own country during the visit of the British queen, when the Good Friday Agreement and other peace agreements were signed, when the call came for a new reconciliation among people hurt badly in the times of the troubles?

Compassion, mercy, forgiveness and a hope for justice for all are gifts we ask from the Spirit who blows among us strongly today.

On each inbreath, pray
‘Come, Holy Spirit’,
live in me and in all of us
as you lived in Mary and the apostles life.

Donal Neary SJ