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Pentecost Sunday, 30 May 2004



1. Today the Church is celebrating the Solemnity of Pentecost, which recalls the miraculous outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon Mary and the Apostles in the Upper Room.

Fifty days after Easter, what Christ had promised the disciples came to pass: that they would be baptized with the Holy Spirit (cf. Acts 1: 5) and would thus be clothed in power from on high (cf. Lk 24: 49) to have the strength to proclaim the Gospel to all the nations. Inspired by the fire of the Spirit, the Apostles came out of the Upper Room and began to speak about the dead and Risen Christ to the faithful from every country who had arrived in Jerusalem; each one heard them speaking in his or her own native language.

2. With Pentecost, God fulfilled the plan he had revealed to Abraham to give life to a new people. The Church was born, the Mystical Body of Christ, scattered across the world. She is made up of men and women of every race and culture, gathered together in faith and in the love of the Most Blessed Trinity to be a sign and an instrument of the unity of the whole human race (cf. Second Vatican Council, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church Lumen Gentium, n. 1). Conformed by the Holy Spirit to Christ the new man, believers become his witnesses, sowers of hope and artisans of mercy and of peace.

3. Let us now turn to Mary Most Holy, whom we contemplate in the Upper Room as she receives the gift of the Holy Spirit, together with the Apostles and disciples. Let us confidently invoke her maternal intercession, so that the miracles of Pentecost may be renewed and all people can accept the Good News of salvation.


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