Pentecost (Whitsunday)

Our Lord laid the foundations of His Church during His public life, and after His Resurrection He gave it the powers necessary for its mission. It was by the Holy Ghost that the apostles were to be trained and endued with strength from on High.  At Pentecost we celebrate the first manifestation of the Holy Ghost among our Lord's disciples and the foundation of the Church itself.

We read in the gospel that our Lord foretold the coming of the Paraclete to His disciples and the epistle shows us the realization of that promise.

It was at the third hour of the day (Terce, nine o'clock in the morning that the Spirit of God descended upon the Cenacle and a mighty wind which blew suddenly upon the house, together with the appearance of tongues of fire within, were the wonderful tokens of His coming. Taught by the "light of Thy Holy Spirit" (Collect) and filled by the gifts of the same Spirit poured out upon them (Sequence), the apostles become new men to go forth and renew the whole world (Introit). It is Mass (which traditionally celebrated at the third hour, immediately following the office of Terce), that we also receive the Holy Spirit whom our Lord "going up above all the heavens, on this day sent down...on the children of adoption" (Preface); for each of the mysteries of the yearly liturgical cycle brings forth its fruits of grace in our souls on the day the Church keeps its anniversary.

During Advent we raised to the Incarnate Word the cry "Come Lord, and purge the sins of Thy people'; at this season, let us with the Church, say to the Holy Ghost, "Come, O Holy Spirit, and fill the hearts of Thy faithful, and kindle in them the fire of Thy love" (Alleluia)

Of all the ejaculatory prayers this the most beautiful and necessary, for from the Holy Ghost, that "sweet Guest of our soul" flows all our supernatural life.